|According to an analyst's report last week by the Commonwealth Bank, ACP Magazines appears to have been losing market share over the past couple of years to chief rivals Pacific Magazines and News Magazines.
As reported in The Australian, over the past two years, ACP's estimated revenue share has fallen from 51 per cent to 49 per cent while Pacific's has risen from 29 per cent to 31 per cent and News's from 11 per cent to 12 per cent, according to the report by media analysts Alice Bennett and Dominique d'Avrincourt.
It gave ACP an estimated 43 per cent circulation share against 29 per cent for Pacific and 13 per cent for News. Fourth was Fairfax Media with 1 per cent.
"Pacific Magazines appears to be weathering the storm better than ACP, both in terms of circulation declines and revenue impact," the report says.
But News Mags was the best performer thanks to its dominance of the stronger food category, in which it has a 75 per cent circulation share, with titles such as MasterChef, Delicious and Donna Hay, it says.
In contrast, while ACP has the largest stable of weekly magazines, many sit in the "challenged" women's and gossip categories.
From 2007 to 2010, the circulation of the 14 audited weeklies (excluding Quokka) had a compound average growth rate of negative 5.5 per cent, compared with a 2.2 per cent fall for newspapers and a 0.7 per cent lift in free-to-air TV audiences.
"While there is clearly a cyclical element to this we also see a substantial structural shift away from magazines, particularly in the more vulnerable women's/gossip magazines," the report says.
The CBA forecasts trading conditions will remain difficult, with magazine ad revenue predicted to fall by 3.5 per cent this year against a lift in the total ad market of 3.1 per cent.
However, the pain is not confined to magazines, with all traditional media experiencing a tough ad market so far this year. A Citigroup report says the print media's share of the ad pie will slip from 37 per cent to 35 per cent this financial year, with TV steady on 32 per cent and online rising from 18 per cent to 20 per cent.
Source: The Australian