Private Frazer’s Doomed Magazines

March 9, 2010

One for Godfrey’s sister Dolly

Filed under: consumer magazines — privatefraser @ 1:45 pm
Tags: ,

I hope this is a joke by someone. It demonstrates an almost heroic sense of the absurd.

The owner of the Lady, the 125 year-old weekly “journal for gentlewomen”, is understood to be working on a bid to acquire the assets of Reader’s Digest UK (Grauniad)

Obviously The Lady feel they can bring their superior marketing and ad sales expertise to the rescue of RDUK.

A couple of figures:

  • The Lady, current active paid circulation 28,362. Active paid circulation three years ago: 31,752
  • Reader’s Digest, current active paid circulation 439,442. Active paid circulation three years ago: 662,417

February 17, 2010

Hard to swallow

Filed under: closures,consumer magazines — privatefraser @ 10:14 pm
Tags:

Actually, even Private Frazer didn’t think it would really happen, but Reader’s Digest UK has gone into administration.

Although this may allow RDA to offload its pension obligations to the Pensions Protection Fund, it isn’t actually clear that this will mean that the magazine continues. (more…)

February 2, 2010

Indigestible

Filed under: Chair by the door,consumer magazines — privatefraser @ 1:17 pm
Tags:

Stand back, ladies and gentlemen, and see if the once great Reader’s Digest crashes and burns.

The US-based company has been in Chapter 11 (protection from being wound up while restructuring) since August, and were expected to emerge, butterfly-like, in the next couple of days.

However, as The Guardian and others report:

The magazine’s US parent company… said UK regulators had not approved a rescue plan to resolve “a …significant unfunded liability within its UK pension scheme.  In light of this …  RDA … notes that unless the pension deficit issue is resolved it will no longer be able to support the UK business indefinitely”

While much of this is the accountants’ version of brinkmanship, it’s not inconceivable (though improbable) that the UK arm would go into administration and be reborn as some other entity. The only people to suffer would be the employees and the pensioners, so no worries there really.

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