SI Swimsuit Issue Still Delivers Strong Print Revenue, But Future Could Be Digital
SI will celebrate the 50th anniversary of its annual swimsuit issue this year and it "has become the magazine's best-selling issue, accounting for some 7% of total annual revenue," according to CNBC's Ross Westgate. Westgate: "The continued success, though, comes as the industry has been trying to (fight) off headwinds facing other forms of print media. The global magazine market is still expected to reach $83 billion by 2017." Panmure Gordon media analyst Alex Degroote said the success of the swimsuit issue is "probably a one-off" because the "trend in mature Western markets is gently downward, but absolutely there can be growth in emerging markets or in other markets where maybe magazines to date haven't really sold so well." He added, "Digital is taking up a lot of the slack," but the "question is whether or not digital is charged for." At the moment, publishers' revenues "are declining," but the hope is most publishers "are able to use pay walls" ("Worldwide Exchange," CNBC, 1/20).