Canadian Magazine Industry News
10 June 2013,     MISSISSAUGA
Robert Kennedy Publishing taps out
Robert Kennedy Publishing closed its doors June 7 and has filed for bankruptcy. The company published a stable of well-known fitness brands including MuscleMag, Oxygen and Clean Eating.

According to a post on RX Muscle by Aaron Singerman, RX editor-in-chief and also a feature writer at RKP's MuscleMag International, RX Muscle was informed that RKP locked up Friday afternoon and production on print editions had ceased with "large sums of money" being owed to the company's printer.

Masthead had been attempting to contact RKP since a job posting went up on Media Job Search Canada May 9 for the position of editor-in-chief of MuscleMag, a role held by Dennis "Gino" Edwards (aka Johnny Fitness) since the publication's launch in 1974. An interview request was formally declined by managing editor Sarah Wells and voicemails and emails to several staff members including Edwards have gone unanswered.

A story on Hard Body News regarding the closure reports that group editorial director Bill Geiger had "quietly" assumed the role of editor-in-chief. "There was no press release announcing his hiring and unfortunately there’s been nothing posted from RKP officially on their sites or social media outlets," reads the post.

Robert Kennedy Publishing was founded by Robert Kennedy, who produced his first magazine with Edwards in 1974. Lore has it that the inaugural edition of MuscleMag was made at Kennedy's kitchen table. Kennedy died April last year due to complications stemming from skin cancer. His wife, Tosca Reno, took the reigns as publisher and chief executive officer shortly thereafter.

RKP's line of publications included MuscleMag International, Oxygen, American Curves, Maximum Fitness, Reps!, Clean Eating, as well as dozens of book titles with a similar focus on health and fitness. A Facebook post from Oxygen-Australia says the licensed editions of MuscleMag, Oxygen and Clean Eating will continue publication in Australia by Fitmedia.

According to Singerman's post on RX Muscle, Musclemag's Geiger is hoping the company's titles will relaunch under a new owner. "I'm sorry for all the talented editors, writers and photographers who have lost their jobs," Geiger said to RX. "We had a really great team but publishing as we know it is changing. Sadly the company was saddled with some costs it couldn't shed and ultimately that dragged us down."
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Wow, Torstar really seems to be on a mission to bankrupt one magazine after another....
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