Cycle World and Motorcyclist to Merge?

Brent Avis
by Brent Avis
Over this past weekend, we've been keeping our eyes on some interesting happenings in the publishing world. Specifically, there were rumblings of the EMAP/Petersen publishing company (that produces Motorcyclist, Sport Rider, Motorcycle Cruiser and other titles) being split up and sold to another concern, possibly even to Hachette (who publishes such titles as Sportbike and Cycle World).

For instance, first there was this news post from Yahoo about EMAP's losses in the past few years since buying into US-based Petersen Publishing Co.,and then just yesterday comes this Reuters report about EMAP's CEO stepping down due to "months of pressure" and "a ($774 million) write-down in the value of its U.S. magazine business..."

We sent a few e-mails up Petersen way yesterday and they insist that everything is going along just fine, they're very profitable, and nobody's the least bit concerned.

Still, various reposrts indicate that losses come from not only a decrease in advertising, stating, "the U.S. arm (of EMAP), which pulls in half its advertising revenue from the depressed automotive sector, saw underlying profit drop 25 percent... in the year to the end of March," but some reports also mention somewhat failed attempts at entering the digital domain.

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