Steve Smith reports:

Claiming substantial gains in its digital and events programs for 2009, The Atlantic says its high profile relaunch last year and new business plan have paid off. While other books sank, the overall ad revenues for the brand grew 16%. Print revenue did drop “slightly,” the company says, but a 115% rise in digital ad revenues more than offset the loss. According to the latest PIB figures for the third quarter, ad pages for The Atlantic were down only 4.3% over same quarter 2008. The latest min Digital Box Scores shows that TheAtlantic.com attracts about 3 million monthly uniques to over 16 million page views.

According to publisher Jay Lauf, The Atlantic was able to expand its base of advertisers beyond the usual suspects in 2009. “Travel, luxury, auto, liquor and technology were among the new groups that helped us maintain close to last year’s revenue,” he tells minonline. “The common theme we seemed to hear was substance and intelligence matters more than ever.”

TheAtlantic.com site has expanded substantially this past year, adding new sections in food, politics and business to expand its inventory and offer potential advertisers more credible scale. Lauf says that site traffic has grown over 40% in the last year and 500% since 2007. The most recent addition, The Atlantic Wire, is a novel aggregator of opinions and columnists. Andrew Sullivan’s “Daily Dish” blog continues to be one of the most influential idea generators in the political blogosphere. TheAtlantic.com won this year’s Webby Award for Best Magazine Site and claims 40 new advertisers, including Porsche, SAP and Luis Vuitton.

The suite of Atlantic LIVE events also expanded with the Washington Ideas Forum and the State of the Union for Health Care, which helped drive that revenue up 27%. Subscription revenue across the paid properties also rose 18% in 2009.

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