The big business magazines are tanking along with the economy. McGraw-Hill is trying to dump BusinessWeek while it still can. Earlier, Condé Nast pulled the plug on Portfolio. And Forbes has shed a large portion of its staff this year.
In Q2, magazine ad revenue dropped an average 22% year-over-year, according to the Magazine Publishers of America. The big business mags had it even worse: BusinessWeek was down 30%, Forbes down 35%, and Fortune down 43%. Even the Economist, which has outperformed its peers in recent years, was down 20%. (Subscription revenue and online revenue — the lone source of growth for many publications — is not included in these tallies.)
It’s possible this is just a cyclical market, and that business magazines will somehow stabilise (or at least discover smaller, but still profitable, businesses on the web). But probably not without a lot more downsizing.
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