Alpha Media Putting 'Maxim' Up For Sale
The magazine business is in a state of flux, with a rapid series of changes reflecting the continuing challenges facing publishers in a difficult
print advertising environment. In the latest development, Alpha Media announced that it is exploring a possible sale of Maxim, the lifestyle magazine and multiplatform media brand targeting
Alpha said it will also consider other arrangements, including taking on investors or partners for Maxim.
With print media in general on the rocks, Alpha is emphasizing the brand’s growing digital presence as it seeks a buyer or investor. Maxim content is currently available in various formats via iPhone, Android, tablet and Xbox Live, soon to be joined by PS3, Blackberry 10, Roku, and online TVs.
Maxim president Ben Madden stated: “We have evolved with the changing landscape, including our expansion and investment into video, digital properties, events, and new partnerships and products…” Currently, Alpha claims Maxim reaches an audience of over 30 million worldwide.
As noted, however, the picture on the print side isn’t quite as bright. In 2012, Maxim’s total print ad pages declined 22.2% compared to the year before, according to the Publisher’s Information Bureau, from 504 to 392. The 2012 figure is a long way from the magazine’s peak in 2002, when PIB tallied 1,224 ad pages. That’s a 68% decline over a decade.
Maxim changed hands several times during that period. In June 2007, Dennis Publishing sold Maxim and its corporate siblings, shopping mag Stuff and music mag Blender, to the Quadrangle Capital Partners in partnership with ex-Wenner Media boss Kent Brownridge, for about $250 million.
Stuff was shuttered almost immediately, in August 2007, and Quadrangle lost control of Maxim to one of its main creditors, Cerberus Capital Management, in July 2009. Blender was shuttered in March 2009.