Founded by Jean Prouvost (who also launched Paris Soir and Paris Match), Marie Claire was born twice, first as a weekly in October 1937, where it saw such immediate success, that police were asked to keep watch over newsstands to keep order. This success was further proved by phenomenal newsstand sales; Marie Claire sold 500,000 copies of the first issue and in 1939 nearly a million copies on the eve of World War II.
Marie Claire was a magazine ahead of its time, offering not only the latest in fashion and beauty but also delivering serious and provocative journalism. It was this contemporary and unique combination that immediately proved so successful. With Marcelle Auclair the original power woman at its head, Marie Claire became the first modern women’s fashion magazine. From the beginning, the goal of Jean Prouvost was to speak to women of all ages and all walks of life; he wanted Marie Claire to be a magazine that spoke to both “la petite Française” and “la Duchesse d’Aven”.
Marie Claire was born a second time in October 1954 with the same founder, Jean Prouvost, the same editor, Marcelle Auclair, and the same mission: “to open up the future for women, help them make their own way through changing times. Inform them about subjects that are rocking their world, give them a voice to share the challenges they face and those of the changing society they live in”.
Marie Claire’s originality was also accredited to its high-end production. The magazine was produced on luxury paper, with a fresh, modern and airy layout. The magazine was filled with beautiful illustrations and fashion sketches that balanced luxury and affordable ideas.
When Jean Prouvost left Marie Claire’s helm in 1976, Evelyne Prouvost, one of his granddaughters created Groupe Marie Claire. Evelyne became Chairman of the company, regrouping feminine titles of the Prouvost empire. Evelyne loved magazines, had an insatiable curiosity about culture and was committed to journalistic excellence. She was a giant of the publishing world and a great champion of women. In 1989 Evelyne Prouvost was named “Business Women of the Year,” winning the Veuve Cliquot prize.
Arnaud de Contades became CEO of Groupe Marie Claire in 2004. Since becoming CEO, Arnaud focused on driving diversification and amplifying the digital transformation of the group. With successful launches including Stylist and magicmaman (the leading parenting media brand in France) and a premium portfolio of women’s, parenting and lifestyle brands, Groupe Marie Claire now reaches an influential and connected audience of over 12 million.
Arnaud de Contades continued to accelerate the international development of Marie Claire, launching Marie Claire in Czech Rep., Hungary, Romania, Ukraine, Indonesia, and the Middle East. Through fashion-focused magazine brands, extensive digital platforms, social media platforms and by meeting readers face to face, Marie Claire now connects with an audience of over 90 million internationally.
Today Marie Claire is present in 29 markets around the world including Europe, the Americas, Asia Pacific, South Africa, and the Middle East, making Marie Claire one of the most widely recognized women’s fashion media brands in the world.
GROUPE MARIE CLAIRE
Groupe Marie Claire is a multimedia company that develops its many brands both on and off-line. With more than 50 websites and 80 editions in the world, Groupe Marie Claire continues to evolve and diversify across video, data, e-commerce, social media, licensing, book publishing, experiences, and events.
In addition to Marie Claire and its sister magazines, Groupe Marie Claire also publishes: Stylist, Avantages, Magicmaman, Cosmopolitan, Mariages, Marie Claire Idées, Cuisine et Vins de France and La Revue du Vin de France plus many websites. Discover more about Groupe Marie Claire here.