THE Irishman behind British fashion bible Vogue for the last three decades is to retire at the end of the year.
Born in Kilkenny, Stephen Quinn has been Publishing Director of British Vogue for more than 26 years.
He will retire at the end of the year after new Editor Edward Enninful's first edition hits shelves in December.
As an orphan raised by adopted parents in Ireland, Quinn took the ferry to England at the age of 17 to seek his fortune.
He studied accountancy, but soon moved to advertising sales on Nova Magazine, and later on Over 21 Magazine, before moving to Hearst as Ad Manager on Harpers & Queen, now Harper’s Bazaar.
“It’s been a privilege to champion Vogue with intensity, passion and ferocity. I’ve relished every day in the office, every skirmish with an agency, every meeting with a client," Mr Quinn said as news of his retirement was announced.
He added: "I will leave Vogue in the strongest position possible and with a crack commercial team in place.
"2018 will be my time, but first I’m looking forward to ensuring the December issue, the debut under the editorship of Edward Enninful, is a blockbuster from a commercial perspective, and will relish securing every possible business opportunity between now and the end of this year.”
Mr Quinn joined Condé Nast in 1988 from Hearst to launch British GQ.
Four years later, in 1992, Stephen oversaw his first issue of Vogue as Publishing Director, with then Editor Liz Tilberis.
That same year Alexandra Shulman left her role as Editor of GQ to join Vogue as Editor, the continuation of a working relationship between Stephen and Alexandra which lasted more than a quarter of a century.
Stephen will continue as Publishing Director of Vogue, which celebrated 100 years in 2016, until December 22.
News regarding his successor will be announced shortly.
Stephen Quinn and Vogue in numbers
During his time at Vogue he has...
Published 312 issues
Sold 42,600 display ad pages (and counting)
Secured total ad revenues in excess of £430million
Albert Read, Managing Director of Condé Nast Britain said: “Stephen Quinn has steered the Vogue business spectacularly for more than a quarter of a century, and is still working at maximum power in his seventies.
"Stephen brings a unique level of charm to each meeting and exchange, while his reputation as a firebrand is well recorded.
'He is a strident defender of the fashion bible, and an executive who relishes a battle.
"One of the great characters of the media industry, respected and loved by all his staff and those who work alongside him, Vogue House and the fashion and media industries will miss the ebullient and very mighty Quinn,” he added.
“I have known and worked with Stephen for more than 40 years. He is, without doubt, the senior advertising honcho in the magazine industry – a distinguished negotiator and business operator known to every client, to every brand President and MD, to every agency – in London, in Milan, Paris and New York,” said Nicholas Coleridge, Chairman of Condé Nast Britain.
“Stephen has sold more glossy advertising than anyone else alive in Britain today. He holds incredibly strong views, is famous for his outbursts, is well read, a brilliant motivator. And he always wears red socks.”
Stephen Quinn was inducted into the PPA Hall of Fame in 2015, other Awards include the 2015 CEW Special Industry Award; the Fragrance Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award (2010) and the Lifetime Achievement Award from Magazines Ireland (2016).