Private Frazer’s Doomed Magazines

March 31, 2014

And another…

Filed under: closures,consumer magazines,Corporate bollocks — privatefraser @ 7:04 pm
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As Private Frazer mentioned last month, it isn’t a question of if, but when the “lads’ mags” category will finally be put out of our misery, and the latest inevitable closure is IPC’s Nuts magazine. IPC have form in flogging dead horses to any buyer with a smart suit and plausible manner, so the fact that even they couldn’t offload this turkey (I will mix whatever metaphors I choose, thank you very much) suggests that the pool of stupid, wannabe publishers is not as deep as previously.

Now that Nuts is toast, Bauer can presumably declare victory and shut Zoo without loss of face.

Corporate bollocks award of the day goes to Paul Williams, managing director of IPC’s Inspire division. “After 10 years at the top of its market [you know what they say about scum always rising to the top], we have taken the difficult decision to propose the closure of Nuts … IPC will provide impacted staff with all the support they need during the consultation process.

Impacted“? You mean “fired” Paul, or “redundant”, surely?

March 7, 2014

Bad Hair Day

Filed under: closures,Corporate bollocks — privatefraser @ 5:15 pm
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Immediate Media have taken the clippers to the loose fringes of their list and cut off Your Hair (final issue will be 12 March) and Hair Ideas (closing on 27 March).

According to an email from Dominic Lobley, Immediate’s PR Manager (have they already dumped the publisher?): “We have made this decision due to the changing print market for all hair titles which recently has declined at an even greater rate than originally anticipated.” (I know, I know – and he also uses the word “impacted”, thus scoring double points in today’s crapspeak awards.)

 

September 6, 2013

Future Tense

Filed under: consumer magazines,Corporate bollocks,Future Publishing — privatefraser @ 8:24 am
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With an inevitability that would make an Ancient Greek dramatist utter a long, low whistle of appreciation, the ongoing tragedy of Future Publishing moves into yet another act.

This week Mark “Dead” Wood has announced 55 redundancies – on top of the vacancies that haven’t been filled since it introduced a recruitment freeze in July. Dead has blamed (again) the delay in the launches of new games consoles (an argument wonderfully skewered by MCV in July) and the bumpiness of the road to digital. And expect both these arguments to be taken out for long walks again later in the year.

The underlying problems of Future are twofold – the short termism that being a publicly-quoted company engenders, forever chasing a positive spin to put onto its City trading updates, and the fact that Future has always had pretensions to be a Premiership side when really they’re towards the foot of the Championship. They are not Celtic or Aberdeen, more a Morton or a Cowdenbeath. (more…)

August 8, 2013

Future Imperfect

Filed under: closures,Corporate bollocks,digital only,Future Publishing — privatefraser @ 7:30 pm

I’d promised myself not to do it. Here I am sunning myself on the lovely Isle of Barra, where the temperature has climbed to a balmy 14 degrees, so I shouldn’t be playing with yon interweb.

Plus, it’s not to do with the demise of any printed products, but some of those new-fangled digital titles. And it’s about Future Publishing* so it seems like kicking a man when he’s down.

Then again, when a man’s down is the easiest and most effective time to put the tacketie buits in.

So our old pals in Bath have announced the death of two of their products in the last few weeks. The first was Tech, a “weekly international iPad magazine aimed at busy technology enthusiasts,” who were far too busy to read or to buy the product, and the second was Tap! the digital zombie left when the print version of the title was axed last year.

Even then I might have left mentioning these new corpses were it not for the comment about the closures that Nial Ferguson, Future’s MD of technology, film and games made to MediaBriefing , “there is learning in everything we do, and we’re looping that learning back across our teams as we drive on.”

“Looping that learning” – a phrase to savour.

 

 

*I know they’ve dropped the word ‘Publishing’ from their company name as that is so last century, so I feel it right and proper to go on using it, even if only to irritate Mark Wood.

April 12, 2013

Less Ink on Less Paper

Filed under: B2B magazines,Chair by the door,Corporate bollocks — privatefraser @ 4:12 pm

News from Hammersmith as Haymarket offload Nursery World and Printweek to the Mark Allen Group. The value of the sale (which will be of interest to Haymarket debt watchers), is not mentioned.

Printweek will be relaunched as a fortnightly. (Presumably called Print2weeks)

Jane Macken, md of Haymarket Business Media is quoted as saying, “The sale of the titles allows HBM to concentrate on its core markets in line with the company’s group growth strategy.

That’s growth as in “growth (sic)”.

 

h/t to Mr X (I suspect that’s not his real name)

 

February 4, 2013

New Year, Old Story

Filed under: Chair by the door,consumer magazines,Corporate bollocks — privatefraser @ 8:58 am
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The news that IPC are going to lay off 150, or 8%, of their staff as part of “organisational changes” definitely puts the titles over at Auton Towers on the watch list.

Although IPC defenestrated as many of its underperforming magazines as it could in 2010, even it was unable to find enough mug punters to take all of its lame ducks. Couple that with IPC’s heavy dependence on advertising (there seems to have been little diversification into additional revenue streams) and you have major problems.

Of course, Private Frazer could be very wrong (it is my default position after all) and the cuts might be entirely because the US parent company needs to make big savings and the incredibly profitable UK arm has to share the pain. Yeah, as they say, right.

Watch this space.

Sylvia’s email to the IPC infantry can be read in full here. This is also where any new news will find a home.

IPC staffers with stories to share, please email private.frazer@hotmail.co.uk  Anonymity guaranteed.

November 27, 2012

Lack of Knowledge

Filed under: closures,consumer magazines,Corporate bollocks — privatefraser @ 4:20 pm
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Immediate Media have announced the, er, immediate closure of BBC Knowledge magazine.

At the foot of the magazine’s website you’ll find this bit of corporate bollocks:

The licence to publish BBC Knowledge Magazine was acquired from BBC Worldwide by Immediate Media Company on 1 November 2011. We remain committed to publishing a magazine and website of the highest editorial quality [my emphasis]

You wonder just how committed they were to a “website of the highest … quality” when they hadn’t updated their blog since March and their “latest updates” were posted in April.

 

August 2, 2011

Spot the difference

Filed under: Corporate bollocks,Future Publishing — privatefraser @ 2:04 pm
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Good news from Future! They announce that their digital sales have passed the £2m a year point.

More on that later and why these volumes probably represent only around 5% of their print sales, but first, a competition!

See if you can spot the difference between these two statements from Mark Wood, the CEO of Future UK

“Our UK print magazine sales are holding up well” (1 August – PR statement)

“Sales of UK print magazines on newsstand,… have … seen significant decline (around 10% year-on-year)” (15 July – memo to staff)

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