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People staffer Jen Garcia, one of the more well-known faces of the magazine on the West Coast, has left her deputy news editor gig to work for Whalerock Industries. But really, the Kardashians (and two Jenners).
Garcia joins the Lloyd Braun-led Whalerock — an independent and diversified media/tech company that creates, produces and distributes content on the web, TV and film — in an executive editor role that will see the veteran journalist oversee editorial content for Whalerock’s media hub partnerships for a bunch of famous sisters — Kim Kardashian West, Khloé and Kourtney Kardashian, and Kendall and Kylie Jenner.
Read More Kylie Jenner Teases New Beauty Site
The media hubs are due to launch this summer and are described by the company as interactive to “include original and licensed content and experiences. Each media hub will be unique to talent and enable them to directly interact with their audiences.” Whalerock is already in business with digital heavyweight Howard Stern and buzzy rapper Tyler the Creator under similar partnerships, which include subscription-based offerings.
While specifics of the Kardashian and Jenner sites have yet to be revealed, Kylie teased last week that her personal site will have a beauty focus. And it’s no doubt that each of the hubs will lean on the massive social media followings of the Kardashians and Jenners. (Kim alone has 33.4 million Twitter followers, 39 million Instagram followers and 25 million Facebook fans).
The move brings the respected Garcia closer to the family which she has covered extensively during her magazine career including her time at People. In fact, the entertainment and celebrity news expert has coordinated so much Kardashian coverage and worked so closely with the family — think babies, breakups, beauty and weddings — that Mrs. West had a few words to add in Whalerock’s press release.
Says Kardashian West, who most recently worked with Garcia on guest editing People’s BeautyWatch section: “I am thrilled to have Jen collaborate with me in launching this exciting new way to connect directly with my community. She has been there for many of my family’s important milestones over the past 10 years and I truly value her editorial perspective on lifestyle, fashion, and beauty.”
For her part, Garcia notes that she’s thrilled to join Whalerock, which already employs several former People mag staffers in senior roles. “The Kardashians and Jenners have proved they are not only an incredible force in the entertainment industry but cultural influencers and beauty and fashion icons of their generation and beyond,” she says.
Garcia has hosted many a red carpet for People TV, appeared on countless TV specials on behalf of the publication and has been seen on Good Morning America, Today Show, CBS Early Show, CNN, Access Hollywood and Extra.
Jess Cagle, editorial director of People and Entertainment Weekly commented on Garcia’s departure to THR. “I’m going to miss Jen terribly,” he says. “As if I needed another reason to be envious of the Kardashians.”
Braun’s Whalerock, also headed by president Jeff Berman and digital head Jared Heinke, is currently located in Santa Monica but is prepping for a move to the Pacific Design Center’s red building later this year. The company’s portfolio of sites also includes Wonderwall, Mandatory, Purple Clover, Mom.me and Moviefone, among others.
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