OLD Media Moves

Forbes magazine seeks an investor

May 4, 2006

Advertising Age is reporting that business magazine Forbes is seeking an investor to buy a stake in the company, but what the money would be used for is unclear.

ForbesReporter Nat Ives writes, “Other executives in the business-magazine category speculated that Forbes may want extra cash to fund a new assault on Europe with a region-specific edition. It served Europe and other regions with Forbes Global from 1998 until last summer, when it remade the title as Forbes Asia.

“The business-magazine sector has been sluggish, of course, and Forbes magazine has felt the effects. Its ad pages almost held flat in the first quarter, slipping 0.4%, and fell 2.9% last year, according to the Publishers Information Bureau.

“But Forbes also collected $63.8 million in ad revenue during the first quarter, more than any competitor, and up 4.4% from $61.1 million during the first quarter of 2005, according to estimates by TNS Media Intelligence.

“That $63.8 million also represents nearly 25% of the ad revenue brought in by a competitive set comprising Forbes, Business Week, The Economist, Harvard Business Review, Conde Nast Publications’ Wired, Barron’s from Dow Jones, Time Inc.’s Fortune and Business 2.0 and Mansueto Ventures’ Inc. and Fast Company.

“Forbes.com has also become a tremendous asset to the company, to the point that Forbes.com President-CEO Jim Spanfeller told attendees at last year’s American Business Media conference in Boca Raton, Fla., that its ad revenues would “probably” exceed that of Forbes magazine in “about 18 to 20 months.” That was 12 months ago.”

Read the rest here.

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