Tag Archives: BusinessWeek


Biz magazines underperform industry in first quarter


The 14 business magazines underperformed the rest of the magazine industry in the first quarter, according to data from Publishers Information Bureau.

Combined, the business titles reported a 2.95 decrease in advertising revenue to $245.4 million and a 5.9 percent drop in advertising pages to 2,289.43. That compares to a 1.6 percent decrease in ad revenue and a 4 percent decrease in ad pages for the overall industry.

The performance continues a trend of the business titles underperforming the industry. The 14 business magazines reported ad revenue of $1.33 billion in 2013, down 4.8 percent from 2012, according to data from the Publishers Information Bureau. In comparison, the consumer magazine industry reported a 1.1 percent increase in 2013.

The best performing business magazine for the first three months of 2014 was Inc., which reported a 25.9 percent increase in advertising revenue to $8.7 million and a 24.1 percent increase in ad pages to 101.32.

Behind it was Entrepreneur, which reported a 14.3 percent rise in advertising revenue to $23.2 million and a 14.9 percent increase in ad pages to 267.39.

Barron’s also reported a strong quarter, with advertising revenue rising 6.7 percent to $16.8 million and ad pages rising 3.1 percent rising to 305.87.

Among the big three business magazines, Forbes posted the best results, but all saw a decline in advertising revenue and advertising pages.

Forbes posted a 4.1 percent drop in ad revenue to $40.4 million and an 8.7 percent decline in ad pages to 242.98 for the quarter. Bloomberg Businessweek had a 6.6 decline in ad revenue to $33 million and a 10.6 percent drop in ad pages to 204.41, while Fortune had a 7.4 percent decline in ad pages to $38.5 million and a 10.8 percent decline in ad pages to 243.47.

The worst-performing business magazine was Black Enterprise, which had a 44.9 percent drop in ad revenue to $2.1 million and a 46 percent decline in ad pages to 44.61 in the quarter.

To review all of the data, go here.


NYSSCPA names financial journalism award winners


The New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants announced the winners of its 2014 Excellence in Financial Journalism Awards.

The nationwide contest — the 31st annual this year — recognizes reporters from the national and local press whose work was published, posted or broadcast in 2013 and contributed to a better and balanced understanding of business or financial topics. Winners were selected by judges from the NYSSCPA and the New York Financial Writers Association who ranked submissions on accuracy, quality and thoroughness of research.
This year’s winners will be honored during a luncheon ceremony May 1 in New York City.
Book – Business/Financial:
Gregory Zuckerman for  “The Frackers: The Outrageous Inside Story of the Billionaire Wildcatters” (Portfolio/Penguin). In five years, the United States has seen a historic burst of oil and natural gas production, easing our insatiable hunger for energy. A new drilling process called fracking has made us the world’s fastest growing energy power, on track to pass Saudi Arabia by 2020. But despite headlines and controversy, no previous book has shown how the revolution really happened.
Print & Online:
Trade Press Category – News/Investigative:  David Evans, Bloomberg Markets, for “Fleeced by Fees.” Even as Wall Street has found countless ways to trick and profit excessively from its customers, the fees charged by managed futures funds are outrageous by all standards— and hidden.
Trade Press Category – Features: Janet Hewitt, Mortgage Banking, for “That Other American Dream” an in-depth look at the senior management and business strategy behind Ellie Mae, a unique company in the mortgage technology field that has found a way to be a success story in the face of epic headwinds.
Trade Press Category – Opinion: Kenneth Silber, Research, for “Who’s Kidding Whom?” a piece that focused on the risks of financial advisors “living in a bubble” and filtering out adverse information about public opinion and the political climate.
Consumer Press Category – News/Investigative: Cam Simpson, Bloomberg Businessweek, for “Stranded”  which follows the incredible tale of 1,500 Nepalese men as they are recruited in their homeland by job brokers who charge fees for the service, then flown to Malaysia where they’ll work at a Flextronics plant assembling cameras for the new phone. Once there, they’re stranded when Apple moves assembly to another plant.
Consumer Press Category – Features:  Peter Elkind and Doris Burke, Fortune,for “Amazon’s (Not So Secret) War on Taxes,” where the pair reveal how Jeff  Bezos’ company successfully battled to preserve his company online sales-tax exempt status by demanding, wheedling, suing, threatening, and negotiating—and how new alliances and strategies among Amazon’s enemies finally began turning the tide.
Consumer Press Category – Opinion: Dan Primack, Fortune, for “Where is Calpers’s Governance When You Need It?”, in Fortune, in this, one of his ongoing commentaries about private equity, venture capital, Wall Street, mergers and acquisitions, and other deal-related topics, Primack chides the corporate watchdog for its complicity in allowing a third-party “placement agent” to channel Calpers’s investments toward a private equity fund, all the while portraying itself as an unwitting victim
Category – Segment Running 10 Minutes or Less: Richard Quest, CNN International – In the summer of 2013 Richard Quest travelled to Texas to investigate both the day-to-day work of fracking, and its long-term economic impact.
Category – Segment Running More than 10 Minutes: Scott Cohn, CNBC, for “Critical Condition: Saving America’s Cities,” the historic bankruptcy of the city of Detroit in 2013 was not an isolated incident. As this series shows, no major city is without at least some of the same issues that sent Detroit over the edge.
Category – Segment Running 10 Minutes or Less:  Alisa Parenti with producer Tracy Johnke, Marketwatch.com Radio for “Housing on Fire: Tips for Buyers and Sellers” – As the housing market started to heat up again, Parenti and Johnke had a very simple goal: To help buyers and sellers maximize their positions in the finally-improving real estate market.
Category – Segment Running More than Ten Minutes: Gordon Deal, Wall Street Journal This Morning, 16-day segment series decoded the government shutdown’s impact on real people, the economy and business.
Fast Company

Fast Company is finalist for Magazine of the Year


Fast Company was named Thursday as one of five finalists for Magazine of the Year by the American Society of Magazine Editors.

The National Magazine Awards will be presented on Thursday, May 1, at the New York Marriott Marquis.

Bloomberg Businessweek and Money also received two nominations, while Wired received five nominations, including a nomination in the design category.

Bloomberg Businessweek is a finalist in the single-topic category for “Five Years From the Brink,” Sept. 16-22.

Money is a finalist twice in the personal service category for for “The Massachusetts Experiment,” June; “Worker, Heal Thyself,” August; and “Obamacare: Game (Really) On,” October, by Amanda Gengler; and for “101 Ways to Build Wealth,” May.

Wired is a finalist in the leisure interest category for “Crazy Good! Locos Tacos, Umami Burgers, Fake Meat, and the Miracle of Processed Food,” October.

Bloomberg Businessweek and Wired are also finalists in the tablet category, while Wired is a finalist in the multimedia category for “Vision Quest,” by Clive Thompson, September print issue and at wired.com.

Fortune is a finalist in the public interest category for “Dirty Medicine,” May 15, “Maker of Generic Lipitor Pleads Guilty to Selling ‘Adulterated Drugs,’” May 13, and “The Latest to Claim Fraud at Generic Lipitor Maker Ranbaxy: Its Owners,” May 23, by Katherine Eban.

Finally, Wired is a finalist in the feature writing category for “Dangerous,” by Joshua Davis, January.

See all of the finalists here.

Bloomberg keyboard

Bloomberg Media CEO: We will add digital products, invest in print and radio


Bloomberg Media CEO Justin Smith has posted a strategic plan for our the financial media company plans to grow its business going forward.

Here is an excerpt:

The future of media and influence is digital and our first major step will be to align our efforts with this profound market shift.

The trend lines not only point to digital, but also towards further media fragmentation. Consumers are replacing “one size fits all” experiences with patchworks of deeper, more narrowly casted content environments that provide depth, context and community.

Today, we offer consumers two digital entry points in Bloomberg.com and Businessweek.com, but the differences between them are not as clear to consumers or advertisers as they could be. Bloomberg.com is a general business offering, but users rely on it primarily for its markets and finance content. Businessweek.com is a magazine companion site still searching for its digital rhythm. Our digital branding and product strategy needs to be clear and intentional. Consumers should have no doubt about the nature and value of our digital offerings.

Our strategy calls for building out a portfolio of new digital assets that better align our content offerings to global business audience segments. This realignment will help us go bolder and deeper, signaling to consumers outside of finance that Bloomberg has the media products for them, while providing advertisers with a more targeted way to reach their most important audiences.

And another:

Print will be complemented by critical extensions into digital, TV, and live events (as we did with Businessweek’s ‘The Year Ahead’). We will also expand our international footprint through more aggressive licensing efforts. Transforming our print publications into wholly multi-platform brands will propel them to their fullest potential.

Bloomberg Businessweek’s sensibility and range — witty, visual, forward-looking and global — will power our march into the larger global business audience across all platforms, while maintaining weekly print editions.

Bloomberg Markets will offer the same award-winning market insight and expertise, but the editorial focus will expand to a wider financial professional audience.

Bloomberg Pursuits is quickly becoming one of the premium global luxury magazines and a platform for luxury advertisers to market their products to a coveted audience. With its rapid success, we are going to increase print frequency and integrate Pursuits across platforms, including TV and events.

Ninety percent of Americans still listen to the radio — and news/talk/information is the consumers’ preferred format. We’ll continue to bring Bloomberg’s coverage to listeners in New York and Boston while broadening to reflect our new focus on the global business audience.

Read more here.

BusinessWeek B Schools

Bloomberg Businessweek seeks online reporter


Bloomberg Businessweek is seeking an Online Reporter for its Business Schools vertical. The reporter will cover a wide range of issues relevant to prospective MBAs, business school students and b-school alumni. They will also write content to accompany the annual business school rankings packages, and have the opportunity to write magazine stories.

Beyond the relevant professional experience, our ideal candidate will have grand ambition for our BSchools franchise and bring the voice, energy and vision needed to build on our strong history and foundation.


- Applicants should have 1-3 years of experience, a track record of very clean copy and above average reporting skills, and a unique voice.
- The ideal candidate will thrive in fast-paced environments; be comfortable producing a high volume of short but well-written blog dispatches daily while working on longer enterprise pieces at the same time; and have a tendency to become obsessed with every corner of a beat.
- Blogging experience and digital/multimedia fluency are ideal.
- Experience covering higher education or MBA issues is a plus, but not a must-have.
- An aptitude for jumping wholeheartedly into a new beat also works.

To apply, go here.


Bloomberg Businessweek seeks design editor


Bloomberg Businessweek is seeking a design editor.

The person in this role will have oversight of all design and data visualization for Businessweek.com. Additionally, this person should have experience with designers and developers. This role will be responsible for writing, editing and creating a design destination on the web and in the magazine that is focused on the intersection of innovation, technology, and companies.

-Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience
-Prior experience with designers
-Minimum of five years of experience as a design editor

To apply, go here.

BusinessWeek B Schools

Bloomberg Businessweek seeks B-school reporter


Bloomberg Businessweek is seeking a Junior Online Reporter Consultant for its Business Schools vertical. The reporter will cover a wide range of issues relevant to prospective MBAs, business school students and b-school alumni. They will also write content to accompany the annual business school rankings packages.

Beyond the relevant professional experience, our ideal candidate will have grand ambition for our BSchools franchise and bring the voice, energy and vision needed to build on our strong history and foundation.


- Applicants should have 1-2 years of experience, a track record of very clean copy and above average reporting skills, and a unique voice.
- The ideal candidate will thrive in fast-paced environments; be comfortable producing a high volume of short but well-written blog dispatches daily while working on longer enterprise pieces at the same time.- Blogging experience and digital/multimedia fluency are ideal.
- An aptitude for jumping wholeheartedly into a new beat also works.

To apply, go here.

Six covers

Bloomberg Businessweek’s six-cover story


This week’s edition of Bloomberg Businessweek rolled out with six different covers each featuring a low-paid worker in a story about raising the minimum wage.

Peter Coy wrote the story:

Raising the minimum wage is certain to be a wedge issue for Democrats in the midterm elections because it’s the rare redistributive measure that enjoys broad popular support. A Washington Post-ABC News poll in December found that two-thirds of Americans support a minimum wage increase. But to opponents, it smacks of Big Government heavy-handedness. That explains why politicians on both sides are loudly reminding their constituents of their ideologies. The back and forth, however, fails to address the real issues: What’s the right minimum wage? And what’s the fairest way for the world’s largest economy—historically a beacon of social mobility—to arrive at it?

The first question is a bit easier to answer. The original minimum wage, 25¢ an hour, was born in 1938 under similar conditions of economic hardship and class resentment. Labor Secretary Frances Perkins and President Franklin Roosevelt had fought for it for five years. The night before signing the Fair Labor Standards Act, in a radio fireside chat, Roosevelt said, “Do not let any calamity-howling executive with an income of $1,000 a day … tell you … that a wage of $11 a week is going to have a disastrous effect on all American industry.”

Coy goes on to talk about the argument against government setting pricing standards and why some free-market advocates dislike the interference. He then examines research debunking the notion that raising wages contributes to higher unemployment.

The Card-Krueger study touched off an econometric arms race as labor economists on opposite sides of the argument topped one another with increasingly sophisticated analyses. The net result has been to soften the economics profession’s traditional skepticism about minimum wages. If there are negative effects on total employment, the most recent studies show, they appear to be small. Higher wages reduce turnover by increasing job satisfaction, so at any given moment there are fewer unfilled openings. Within reasonable ranges of a minimum wage, the churn-reducing effect seems to offset whatever staff reductions occur because of higher labor costs. Also, some businesses manage to pass along the costs to customers without harming sales.

Writing for the Huffington Post, Jillian Berman’s headline said the story makes “a terrific argument for raising the minimum wage”:

The magazine made six covers featuring low-wage workers. Each person is seen holding up an answer to one of the following questions: “What is your biggest financial fear?” “What do you think you should earn?” and “What do you do?”

“I’m a cashier. I make people smile,” one sign reads. “I worry that the more time I spend working, the less time I have raising my children,” another one states.

The story accompanying the cover delves into how different stake-holders make the economic case for raising the minimum wage or keeping it the same (the federal minimum wage is a measly $7.25). Democratic lawmakers have proposed raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour (with President Obama’s backing), but the provision is stalled in Congress.

The affects of a minimum wage increase on the economy is one of the most hotly debated issues in economic research. Conservatives argue that a boost in the minimum wage would actually be worse for workers because it would make businesses more hesitant to hire. Six hundred economists, including seven nobel laureates, signed a letter last month backing a $10.10 minimum wage. The letter states that the “weight of evidence” shows that “increases in the minimum wage have had little or no negative effect on the employment of minimum-wage workers, even during times of weakness in the labor market.”

The timing of the story coincides with President Obama signing an executive order to raise the rate, Elena Schneider reported in the New York Times:

President Obama signed an executive order on Wednesday to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour from $7.25 an hour for federal contract workers starting in 2015, a promise he made in his State of the Union address last month.

“We are a nation that believes in rewarding honest work with honest wages,” Mr. Obama said Wednesday in a letter announcing the move. “And America deserves a raise.”

As Coy points out, the debate is one of economics, and also politics and elections. There are many sides and special interests that get factored into the discussion and decisions, but people need to make more money to survive. And that’s what the president is saying by issuing his executive order. The Bloomberg Businessweek piece is a comprehensive look at the politics and debate over the minimum wage and worth the read.

Biz media digital audience

Forbes leads biz media among digital audience


Lewis Dvorkin, the chief product officer at Forbes Media, writes about how business news media are attempting to increase their digital audience.

Dvorkin writes,”I saw the numbers in the chart below (November 2013) for the first time a few weeks ago when comScore came in to tell us about its multi-platform reporting capabilities. The light blue bars represent mobile-only domestic unique monthly visitors. The darker blue bars, desktop-only domestic unique monthly visitors.

“comScore says it’s still working on similar international numbers. comScore currently puts our international unique monthly visitors (presumably all desktop) at about 10 million, bringing the Forbes.com worldwide audience to about 36 million. (Note: comScore’s just-released December report increased our mobile-only number to 12.4 million; the Bloomberg-labeled bar includes both Bloomberg.com and BusinessWeek.com).”

Read more here.

Francesca Levy

Bloomberg Businessweek hires new editor to cover B schools


Bloomberg Businessweek has hired Francesca Levy, a senior editor at LinkedIn, to lead its coverage of business schools, reports John Byrne of PoetsandQuants.com.

Byrne writes, “Levy joined the magazine today (Jan. 27) and succeeds Louis Lavelle who abruptly left BusinessWeek in early November.

“For Levy, who has worked for Forbes and Associated Press, her new position is in one sense a return trip. As a reporting intern at BusinessWeek during the summer of 20008, she wrote features for BusinessWeek.com’s business school channel. She also produced slideshows, appeared in video interviews, and managed web forums.

“‘I’m charged with refreshing the coverage, which should be a challenge and a thrill,’ she says.

“Levy had been with LinkedIn for a little more than two years, serving as a senior editor for all aspect of content on the site, including LinkedIn’s Influencer program and its customer professional news website, LinkedIn Today. In that role, she edited original work from contributors, curated news and wrote regular posts. She also managed monthly feature content packages.”

Read more here. In addition, Bloomberg Businessweek also has made the following hire and appointment:

Jonathan Rodkin has been named rankings and research coordinator. He is responsible for redeveloping Bloomberg Businessweek’s rankings of MBA, Undergrad, Executive Education, EMBA, and Part-Time programs. After conducting interviews with key rankings stakeholders – including b-school students, alumni, administrators, faculty, and employers – Rodkin will focus on how to make the rankings more useful, comprehensive, and relevant.

Rodkin has a background in quantitative research design and survey analysis and was previously with the Strength in Numbers Consulting Group, a research and evaluation firm based in Brooklyn.

Ira Sager is the new business school commentary editor. Already a longtime member of the Businessweek.com team, he is now responsible for soliciting commentary and outside contributions for the B-Schools channel and will serve as the dedicated producer for the channel.