Esquire calls time out for print in Malaysia

Malaysian publishing house Blade Digital Media has ceased publication of Esquire Malaysia. The publication first hit the Malaysian market in April 2011. In a statement to A+M, CEO Mark Harvey confirmed that as of January 2020, it is no longer publishing Esquire Malaysia.

Owned by American mass media conglomerate Hearst Communications, Esquire Malaysia was first published in by Mongoose Publishing in Malaysia. Mongoose Publishing also previously published Men’s Health and Women’s Health in Malaysia before the magazines' operations ceased in 2017. A quick check by A+M found that Mongoose Publishing's website is no longer available.

Meanwhile, according to Harvey's LinkedIn, he was the COO of Mongoose Publishing between March 2000 to June 2018 in Kuala Lumpur. In July 2018, he took on the role of CEO of Blade Digital Media. According to Blade Digital Media's website, the publisher said it is a digital-first media house and over the years, has also developed a special projects division which offers custom publishing and content solutions.

In Singapore, Mongoose also published the Esquire Singapore brand and later handed the licence of Esquire Singapore to Indochine Media Ventures in 2017.

Time Out, Expatriate Lifestyle and Essential Education

Meanwhile, Blade Digital Media will continue to publish the digital versions of Time Out Kuala Lumpur and Time Out Penang, as well as its homegrown brands Expatriate Lifestyle and Essential Education. On its website, it stated that: "Upon taking over the publishing of Time Out Kuala Lumpur in January 2018, we radically transformed [it] into a digital media brand after it was published for 10 years previously as a monthly magazine. We also did the same for Expatriate Lifestyle."

In 2017, Time Out Group extended its licensing agreement with Mongoose Publishing in Malaysia for another five years for Time Out Kuala Lumpur and Time Out Penang. However, Time Out Group took over the direct management of Time Out Singapore from its then licensing partner Mongoose Publishing. Mongoose Publishing had been publishing Time Out Singapore since November 2012.

A quick check by A+M found that most of the articles on Time Out Kuala Lumpur are currently advertorials by BH Fitness, ClassPass, Traders Hotel, The Singleton, and Sofitel Kuala Lumpur Damansara. Additionally, it also publishes curated lists on menus, restaurants and music, as well as the latest events in Kuala Lumpur. Meanwhile, the latest article posted on Time Out Penang was in July 2018.

Harvey told A+M that there are no plans to discontinue Time Out Kuala Lumpur. "We remain committed to offering curated content on the best things to do in the city and continue to provide our advertising clients with exciting opportunities to connect with our audience," he added.

Separately, Expatriate Lifestyle has been around since 2003, according to its website, and helps expats who are new to Malaysia navigate daily life and settle in effortlessly. Topics it covers include the latest events, travel, education, food and health. Some of the clients it works with include Martell, Traders Hotel, The Edison George Town Penang, and Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur.

Meanwhile, Essential Education is a guide to help Malaysian families decide on the most suitable private and international education for their children. Among its list of clients are International School of Kuala Lumpur, Alliance Française Kuala Lumpur, British International School of Kuala Lumpur, and Nexus International School Malaysia.