Cap Cities/ABC Titles Are Music to Millionaire's Ears

By Silber, Tony | Folio: the Magazine for Magazine Management, March 1, 1991 | Go to article overview

Cap Cities/ABC Titles Are Music to Millionaire's Ears


Silber, Tony, Folio: the Magazine for Magazine Management


NEW YORK CITY-Gerry M, Ritterman, the publishing entrepreneur who made a fortune selling Soap Opera Digest in 1989, has leapt back into the magazine world with the purchase of Capital Cities/ABC, Inc.'s Schwann catalog and Musical America. The deal was completed in late January. The price was not disclosed.

The Musical America and Schwann catalog groups include seven separate properties, publications that cover the classical and contemporary music scenes and catalogs that list artists and recordings. They are hybrid publications, circulating in music stores to business owners and music enthusiasts. Musical America, the 93-year-old flagship, has a circulation of about 20,000.

Soap Opera Digest legend

Ritterman, 41, has a colorful publishing background, including such posts as CFO of Charter Publishing, general manager of the Financial Times of London and planning director for CBS Publications. But he is perhaps best known for the remarkable turnaround and sale of Soap Opera Digest. He bought it in 1986 for "9 million, poured $1 million into a redesign and sold it three years later to Rupert Murdoch for $70 million.

He also made headlines in 1988 with his Soap Opera Digest ad campaign that parodied other promotional efforts, such as Rolling Stone's "Perception/reality" and Cosmopolitan's "The Power Behind the Pretty Face. …

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