Category Archives: Sports

Haymarket brings Stuff and FourFourTwo mags to Poland

Britain’s enthusiast magazine publisher Haymarket has agreed to licence its gadget title Stuff to the Ginza Media Group of Poland as of September 9, 2010. The cover price is set at 9,90 PLN (or about €2,50) and the print run is 50 000.

Stuff magazine is the UK’s cutting-edge guide to gadgets, gear and technology and is Earth’s most renowned gadget compendium.  Inspirational, witty and friendly, it has become the best-selling gadget magazine in the world. There are 22 international editions, all rammed to the virtual rafters with the world’s coolest kit.  Stuff also has: a new multimedia website, ; a brand new mobile site, ; an annual exhibition; and two of the Britain’s most successful podcasts.  Stuff’s editors travel the world to experience first-hand the very latest in entertainment technology and culture to ensure that all its features are at the cutting edge of the gadgets world.

Meanwhile, Haymarket also reached a licence agreement with Ginza for  its football (soccer) mag FourFourTwo to be published in Poland from September 15 on. The cover price will be 4,90 PLN (€1,30) and the print run is 30 000.

FourFourTwo stands for the very highest quality, unparalleled football knowledge and genuine authority – all delivered with passion, humour and flair. No other media channel gets deeper under the skin of football than FourFourTwo . Global superstars line up to be interviewed, lower-league clubs allow access all areas as we uncover the untold secrets of the game and award-winning investigative reporters dig out crucial stories that take us into the dark heart of football.


Germany: Fit For Fun gets a new look

The recent redesign of Fit For Fun (FFF), the fitness magazine published by the Verlagsgruppe Milchstrasse (part of the Hubert Burda Media empire), turned out to be not as brutal as it was rumoured.  In fact, it has more to do with an “editorial development” as Publishing Director Lutz Nierhoff told German trade magazine MEEDIA in a recent interview.

The magazine will now cover broader topics dear to the German fitness addicts and involve more celebrity profiles such as the workout routine of Barbara Becker (Boris Becker’s ex) in Miami or the editor’s take on its first swim with Olympic swimmer Paul Biedermann. The sections have been re-ordered and now list “Fitness & Sports”, “Food & Body”,  “Relax” and “Style”.

The Burda subsidiary chose to overhaul Fit For Fun after it noticed a changed attitude toward life amongst the magazine’s target audience. The brand, the magazine as well as all merchandising products will reflect the new refreshed look and feel of Fit For Fun.  The FFF name has a very emotional aspect as it touches readers’ feelings and well-beings.  In addition to print and online editions, there are also new FFF licensed products in the pipeline, including a forthcoming new series of books.  However, it won’t be limited to books, DVDs and Wii and DS applications, but will also include fitness products as well as training shoes and home appliances.

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USA: ESPN the Magazine is introducing new single-topic format per issue

ESPN the Magazine is introducing a new format with the issue that hit newsstands on August 13 in the U.S., devoting the bulk of each issue to a single sports topic or theme.

“Rather than continue to try to keep up with every single thing going on in the sports world, we decided to take a deep dive into single topics,” said Gary Belsky, editor-in-chief. This seems to signal that ESPN the Magazine’s Body issue featuring Serena Williams on the cover was a big success. It also signals closer ties between the magazine, which is moving from New York to the Bristol, CT, headquarters – and campus of ESPN – next year and the rest of the company’s various sports TV, radio and Web sites.

The first issue in the new format for ESPN the Magazine is the College Football Kickoff and will be followed in two weeks by the NFL Preview Issue, both of which are among the best-selling regular issues for rival Sports Illustrated each year.

Belsky said he doesn’t think ESPN the Magazine’s new single-subject focus will alienate readers since the upfront sections “Go” and “Play” will still carry 30 to 40 pages devoted to sports of all kinds in each issue. “We actually don’t think it’s a gamble,” said Belsky. “We think we’ve covered all our bases.”

ESPN the Magazine currently has a rate base of 2.000.000 copies and reaches more than 15 million readers every issue, of which 12M are men.  Click here to see the online media kit.

UK: Football magazine “MATCH!” unveils new look for new season

Bauer Media’s footy weekly MATCH! just relaunched on August 10 in the UK and is supposed to be “bigger and better” than ever!

According to Bauer, The magazine, which is led by editor James Bandy, will continue to lead the youth football magazine market, increasing the emphasis on the issues that are the most important to its young, footy-mad readership. Key editorial developments are:

Mates With The Stars! 
The world’s top stars have always loved MATCH!, but this season MATCH! is really stepping it up. Indeed, MATCH! will get the inside track on the best footy heroes, taking them on in penalty shoot-outs, playing them at FIFA and even getting them to show us around their house! In addition to this, in a new regular, “My Week”, MATCH! will get a footy star to reveal all the cool stuff they’ve been up to in the last seven days!

More News & Interviews Than Ever Before!
will have news from every Premier League team every week, as well as the Football League. We’ll have more interviews than any of our rivals, and chat to the big stars from the Championship, League one and League two!

The Best Features!
Want to know how to make it in footy? Want to know what pre-season training at a professional club’s like? Want to know why Barcelona are so good? Want to know who’s wearing which boots, in what colour, what they’ve got stitched on their boots and why? These, and loads of other brilliant features, will all be in MATCH! this season!

More Matchman!
The New Adventures Of MATCHMAN is a 16-page weekly pullout featuring great cartoons, posters and competitions, and is in addition to the usual 68-page magazine!

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USA: “Skyboxx”, a new sports magazine with strong focus on the Miami Heat, to launch this August

The Miami-based founders of The Source and Hip Hop Weekly are betting that LeBron James and his new team, the Miami Heat, will be so popular nationally that 20 or more pages of Heat coverage every issue will attract readers from all over the country.

“The Miami Heat are poised to become a franchise on the level of the New York Yankees, the Dallas Cowboys, the Showtime Lakers of the ’80s — teams that have broad appeal, that have followings beyond their local markets,” said David Mays, publisher of Hip Hop Weekly, which he started along with Raymond “Benzino” Scott.

As told to AdAge, the first issue of the monthly magazine, called Skyboxx and arriving on August 3, is almost entirely devoted to King James, whose Cavaliers uniform on the cover can be peeled away to reveal a Heat jersey underneath.

The new magazine is also meant to skew slightly more female than other sports magazines in the U.S. by including significant amounts of style and lifestyle coverage. Women make up 23% of the Sports Illustrated audience, 21% of ESPN the Magazine‘s audience and 17% of the Sporting News audience, according to a recent round of GfK MRI research.

“You’re going to get good sports journalism but you’re going to get it meshed with a celebrity weekly format that will attract a broader audience,” he said. “When I say format I mean the look and feel of those magazines — shorter stories, bigger pictures, more provocative headlines and lots of style and lifestyle photos.”

However, there are still many out there who doubt this strategy.  The Yankees, Cowboys and Lakers are brands that took Continue reading

Germany: Why Gruner + Jahr bought football mag “11 Freunde”

Gruner +Jahr announced earlier this week that it had bought the independent football culture magazine “11 Freunde” (11 friends, for the 11 players on a football/soccer team), based in Berlin.

According to a recent report by German trade publication MEEDIA, here are the five key reasons why the Hamburg magazine giant bought “11 Freunde“:

  1. 11 Freunde is a high-quality lifestyle publication that cover football and everything around it.  The editorial team of sports journalists is top-notch and the finished product is of premium quality in looks and editorial content.
  2. The 11 Freunde magazine has much “optical opulence”, as MEEDIA wrote, which refers to its glossy aspect, hence making it a great fit within the other G+J portfolio.  Plus, the magazine’s work has been heralded by its peers many times over at magazine awards (finishing #2 at Germany’s Lead Awards for instance).
  3. G+J Publishing Director Volker Breid and 11 Freunde’s editor on chief Phillipp Köster look like they are getting along very well.  And the Hamburgers has also reportedly promised total editorial freedom to the Berliners.
  4. The ad sales of 11 Freunde have lots of potential in G+J’s opinion. Handled in-house out of Berlin until now, the ad sales team will soon be joining the ranks for G+J Media Sales headquartered in Hamburg and will benefit from their own client and agency contacts.
  5. To start a new lifestyle magazine catering to sports enthusiasts would have cost G+J a heck of a lot more than to buy a 51% stake in 11 Freunde (although the official purchase price was not released).  According to MEEDIA, 11 Freunde has been profitable with revenues upwards of €1 million.

Now, the only thing that’s missing is why are the two owners of 11 Freunde, Philipp Köster (editor) and Matthias Hörstmann (Publisher) selling a controlling stake in their magazine so soon?  11 Freunde currently circulates 78 839 copies per issue, a figure that’s expected to keep growing under the new G+J ownership (circ. was up 10,% in December 2009 YoY).

UK: Football controversies always come in “handy” for British tabloids

British tabloids are still raging with headlines about goalie Robert Green’s blunder during England’s opener against the U.S. over the weekend. 

The very trashy News of the World even added insult to cheekyness when it printed “Hand of Clod” on top of Robert Green’s picture during the mishap.  It’s not the first a hand is subject to controversy in the football world and British papers have always had a hand in the dirty post-game backlash…

It all started with Maradona’s “Hand of God” during the 1986 World Cup (Argentina vs. England).

Next to the original is a Lego recreation of Maradona’s “Hand of God” during the quarter finals of the 1986 World Cup .


Followed by Thierry Henry’s “Hand of Frog“, when the French captain used his hand during the last qualifying match against Ireland to deflect a ball so he could pass it to a teammate.  William Gallas then hit the winning header that sent France to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa instead of the Republic of Ireland.

The British tabloid The Sun then had a field day of course with that cover…

All in all though, football’s greatest tragedies have always come in “handy” for British tabloids, whether it involved the Three Lions or not!