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Indiatimes Launches Luxury Blog Luxpresso; HealthMeUp & DigitalBE?

Update: Indiatimes CEO Rishi Khiani informs us, via email, that HealthMeUp is being launched next, alongwith a mens lifestyle blog.

Earlier: The latest from the Indiatimes’* stable is Luxpresso.com, a luxury site that, from what we’ve heard, is a part of its blog network. The site focuses on luxury goods for the India market, and looks like it will offer competition to the likes of the Vogue India and GQ India combine, with lifestyle content on fashion, accessories, travel, gadgets and celebs.

Do keep in mind that a company that the Times of India group invested in – Instamedia – has a blog called BornRich, which has similar content, but doesn’t target the Indian market. Luxpresso, strangely, is running ad networks (Tyroo and Adsense), which showcase non-luxury brands and sites:

Also note how the ‘Ads by Google’ is barely visible. Perhaps the site is currently testing ads, and will incorporate luxury brand advertisers later.

Luxpresso follows the rather eventful launch of their personal technology blog Technoholik earlier this year, and the pilot and puzzling disappearance of two other blogs – more on that below. Earlier this month, Alootechie had reported that other Indiatimes properties like Zigwheels (Auto), Golfingtimes (Golf), Wine Society of India (Wine) and iDiva (Women) are being transitioned to the blog network. iDiva appears to have already made that move.

Health and brand advertising verticals?

Earlier this year, Indiatimes had soft-launched two other blogs:

HealthMeUp: (dns points to Indiatimes, domain details cloaked) was live during July (Google Search and Twitter), and focused on personal fitness
DigitalBE*: appeared to focus on digital advertising, was live for a short while, and is apparently an online extension of Economic Times’ Brand Equity supplement and show of ET Now.

Both the sites are no longer active, and we’re awaiting a response from Indiatimes on the same (Update: HealthMeUp is being launched next). It’s unlikely that they’ve been shelved, and Indiatimes, as we had reported earlier, will have a network of blogs in the works, focusing on multiple domains. By the looks of it, the segments being carved out are with advertisers identified. It’s interesting to see Indiatimes take the vertical approach to content through blogs, while keeping its horizontal Indiatimes.com in-tact, possibly hedging its bets. The other key point to note is that at least three of these sites – Zigwheels, Technoholik and DigitalBE, will have counterparts in print and/or television, giving it the opportunity to cross-sell. The rollout is taking longer had been anticipated, though.

Indiatimes To Launch A Niche Blogs Unit; Our Take

* Disclosure:
– Indiatimes is an advertiser with MediaNama
– MediaNama, as a digital publication, may have areas of overlap and/or competition with Technoh0lik and DigitalBE

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