Crash of magazine sales speeds up, Time Inc. down 13% in just 3 months

Crash of magazine sales speeds up, Time Inc. down 13% in just 3 months

By PAUL BEDARD • 12/3/15 11:50 AM

A decade-long implosion of magazine sales, led by weekly news mags, appears to be speeding up, with major name brands like Time suffering double-digit declines in just the last three months, according to the group that has charted the death of print.

MagNet Data reports that newsstand and other retail sales fell 10.3 percent in the third quarter of 2015, from 128.8 million to 115.5 million. The cash lost: $69 million, or a one-year drop of nearly 10 percent.

The media blog site MediaPost sized the ongoing trend this way: "The downward trend in newsstand sales is continuing — and may even be gathering speed."

MagNet found that the weekly category, where most news magazines are, was hit the hardest. "Looking at title sales it is still apparent that the weekly category leads the decline factor," said the analysis.

Synchrony Financial, in conjunction with Reuters, polled over 3,000 American consumers to learn more about effective customization and offers.

Some examples of the decline in the third quarter:

• Time Inc. sales down 13.1 percent, revenue off $11.3 percent.

• Hearst sales down 21.9 percent, revenue off 20.3 percent.

• Wenner Media, publisher of Rolling Stone, down 15.9 percent, revenue off 15.1 percent.

• Conde Nast sales down 9.3 percent, revenue off 7.2 percent.

Many print magazines have already failed and been turned into websites. Those that have survived have been in a death spiral of spending and staff cuts. Jann Wenner, for example, slashed his payroll 10 percent, downsizing his firm that includes Rolling Stone, Us Weekly and Men's Journal.


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