Canadian Magazine Industry News
18 September 2008,     NATIONAL
Study: Canadian magazine dollars and copies up, market share down
Michael J. Fox

According to a new study conducted by Rogers Publishing Ltd., Canadian publishers took in 38% of the $870 million spent by Canadians on audited magazines in 2007. U.S. single copy sales earned the most revenue, accounting for 45% of dollars spent, while 24% went toward subscriptions to Canadian mags. Compared to 2003, "total dollars are up slightly," writes Michael J. Fox, senior vice president of circulation and development at Rogers, "but copies are up more."

Fox's report tallies Canadian single copy and subscription sales based on numbers from 228 Canadian and 551 American titles, all of them audited by either the Audit Bureau of Circulation (ABC) or BPA/Canadian Circulations Audit Bureau (CCAB).

Here are some more keys facts and figures noted in the report:

  • Total spending on magazines in Canada is up $20.6 million.
  • Market share for Canadian magazines is down from 41% in 2003.
  • In 2007, Canadian magazine sales consisted of $207.8 million in subscriptions and $125.7 million in single copy sales.
  • Single copy sales for Canadian magazines are up $11.6 million compared to 2003, while U.S. sales are down $24.4 million.
  • It's the opposite on the sub side. Canadian revenues are down $24.4 million while the U.S. figure increased by $46.4 million. The closure of TV Guide, combined with lower selling prices for some high-circulation titles, accounts for the Canadian decline, according to Fox.
  • When the metric of total copies  is used, subscriptions for Canadian magazines account for more than half. Total copies of 348.1 million consist of 65% of subscriptions and 35% of single copies.
  • U.S. single copies sold for $4.57 on average versus $3.42 for Canadian titles.
  • Subscriptions for U.S. magazines in Canada averaged $3.09 a copy in 2007, while Canadian magazine subscribers paid $1.16 a copy on average, down from $1.40 in 2003.
  • The top 25 sellers in Canada (of which 10 are Canadian) total $383.6 million in sales, which is 44% of the total market.
  • The top 10 publishing companies (three are Canadian, one, Reader's Digest, operates in both countries) total $512 million or 59% of total sales.

Click here to download a full PDF version of this excellent report.

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