Magazine article Folio: the Magazine for Magazine Management

Small-Business Buyout

Magazine article Folio: the Magazine for Magazine Management

Small-Business Buyout

Article excerpt

Small business is fast becoming big business, now that major players like Time Inc. and Gruner+Jahr USA are beefing up their business-book lineups. To keep pace, publishers are eyeing new economy titles as they go on the auction block and are fishing for niches that diversify business portfolios. The latest reported deal has Business Week's owner, The McGraw-Hill Companies, close to acquiring independently owned Entrepreneur Media. And while Entrepreneur CEO Peter Shea was tight lipped about the negotiations, he did discuss the thinking behind the trend and the trials of independent publishing.

Are you selling the company?

We've been contacted by the usual suspects interested in the small-business market. If they call us, we talk to them. If the right business proposition were to come along, we'd be open to discussing it.

Were you looking for a buyer?

No. We're still nicely profitable, although we're less profitable than we were last year. We'll get through this period of time, and I think we're poised to take some marketshare away from some people.

What's behind the small-business magazine buildup? Why are big publishers suddenly interested in this sector?

Being an independent is becoming more difficult because of the dynamics of the business--circulation and newsstand [declines], and postal increases. So it's a very opportunistic time for the bigger publishers to make strategic acquisitions. And the small-business market has taken on new importance. If you look at it statistically, 98. …

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