It seems like only yesterday that I was kicking myself for missing the inaugural issue of Portfolio – Conde Nast’s glossy competitor to Fortune, Forbes, and the like. Well, I didn’t miss it — I think I still have it — but I meant to write a review of it very early on since I figured many of our customers are regular readers of the aforementioned competitors, or the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, Barron’s, or the Financial Times. The least I could do is offer up my thoughts on it, in case it was something worth reading, or ignoring. By the time I got around to it, the second issue was on the newsstands and I figured it wasn’t really topical at that point.
I did like the magazine, although admittedly, I never bought another issue. It had some great writers including Michael Lewis and Felix Salmon. It included some interesting lifestyle articles, but nothing that you don’t also see in its competitors. It’s unclear what it’s differentiator was other than glossier paper.
The first issue — pictured left — perhaps symbolized the end for the magazine. It was…covered in gold. The magazine was started with a $100 MILLION budget just 2 years ago. In a bull market, perhaps there was a room for another self-congratulatory business mag, but in this economy, evidently, we already have all that we can bear.