And another RBI print title discovers that the world is a cold and friendless place as it is announced that Community Care is to close.
Publishing director Trevor Parker said: “The upheaval in the public sector has seen advertisers question the value of print advertising [and] print recruitment revenues falling by 86 per cent in the last five years”
A wee bit of news from last week that slipped almost unnoticed onto the wires: RBI have sold off Quadrant Subscription Services to the mailing company Air Business.
QSS are in the boring but important world of managing magazine subscriptions – banking money, answering queries, generating the data of who should be mailed each issue. It’s a low margin, volume-driven business with a diminishing number of major players.
What Air Business want to do with a company losing clients and operating a geriatric computer system is anyone’s guess, but the sale is indicative of RBI’s flight from the printed word. When they had dozens of titles that needed to be mailed out to subscribers it made sense to own the company that managed that reader relationship. Now they don’t, it doesn’t – QSS are ill-equipped to manage digital subscriptions (i.e. they can’t do it) and the investment needed to bring their systems up to date is huge.
Has anyone counted how many magazines remain at RBI? Does anyone want to place a bet on when the last one will close or be sold?
More death at RBI as they offload Computer Weekly and MicroScope to TechTarget – who promptly announce the closure of the print editions. Another couple of B2B controlled circulation titles bite the dust and yet more free desks at Quadrant House.
Another one bites the dust with RBI. Personnel Today will drop its weekly print edition from 29 June to go online only according to Press Gazette. This is a further reflection of the fact that advertising losses in print are structural rather than cyclical and that the controlled circulation B2B model is broken. Publishers’ hopes that B2B and recruitment advertising would return to their printed products as the economy staggers its way out of recession are increasingly forlorn.
From the Guardian:
Reed Business Information is to make 18 staff redundant as part of a restructuring that will include the closure of 130-year old Contract Journal.
This follows the pattern of death by a thousand cuts for RBI.
Just when you thought that RBI were getting dull again, up pops this from Press Gazette:
Ian Smith, the chief executive of business publisher Reed Elsevier, has resigned with immediate effect after little more than eight months in the post.
Reed Elsevier announced that Smith resigned “with mutual agreement” and has stepped down today from the company’s board.
Elsevier chief executive Erik Engstrom has been appointed as his replacement.
A company spokesman told Reuters that Smith had been the wrong man for the current economic climate. “Ian and the board decided it wasn’t the right role for him in the current economic circumstances… There is no disagreement on strategy.” [my emphasis]
I love it when everyone agrees about everything, don’t you?
According to the FT Reed Elsevier has sold another division of Reed Business Information.
My old mate Crispin Davis’s stated aim at the start of last year’s wonderful divestment pantomime was to find a buyer for the whole shebang; his successor seems to be in the process of getting rid of small pieces at a time in the hope that no one outside of Quadrant House will notice.