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Open Media forges ahead

The publishing group that now incorporates the Algarve Resident newspaper continues to expand internationally with the launch of Essential Kuala Lumpur

Open Media has joined forces with the well-known Malaysian publishing house The Expat Group to launch the second Asian-market Essential magazine following the successful launch last year of Essential Macau and that of Essential London earlier this year.

The first edition of Essential Kuala Lumpur hit the streets of the Malaysian capital in early July and will be published quarterly.

The magazine is a high-quality, 132-page volume produced to the highest international standards featuring stunning fashion shoots, in-depth content on style and luxury, and insider information on the best aspects of fine living in the Malaysian capital.

The principal target audience of the magazine is wealthy Malaysian nationals, who are reached through distribution channels such as an exclusive direct mail agreement with Malaysia’s second largest bank CIMB, reaching 5,000 of the bank’s wealthiest clients.

The magazine is also aimed at the luxury segment of the tourism market with in-room distribution at premium KL hotels such as Mandarin Oriental.

The Essential magazine concept of luxury “destination lifestyle magazine” was first created by Open Media in 2000 with the Algarve edition, followed shortly by other regional editions elsewhere in Lisbon and Madeira. The company’s first launch in Asia was Essential Macau, which has been published bi-monthly since April 2011 in Chinese and English.

Open Media CEO and founding partner Bruce Hawker told the Algarve Resident: “The internationalisation of the Essential magazines project is based on synergies between our company with our offices in Lisbon and the Algarve and our joint venture partners in other countries such as The Expat Group with their team on the ground in Malaysia. This allows for a unique blend of local and international content.

“Diversification is key to our survival in these challenging times,” added Bruce. “The acquisition of the Algarve Resident for example, was equally important to us, strengthening our position on our home turf in Portugal whilst we search for new opportunities in other countries.”

To find out more about Open Media and to view online editions of Essential magazine, visit