Competition in the sports magazine sector is mounting with Emap,
Haymarket and IPC all planning to launch new titles in the near future.
Both Emap and Haymarket are running ads in the national press this week
to recruit editorial staff but are remaining tight-lipped about the
formats of their magazines. It is understood that they are both likely
to be football magazines to capitalise on the success of their existing
Haymarket sources say that dummies have been prepared for a ‘technical
magazine which will place heavy emphasis on BSkyB’s sports coverage’.
IPC, which publishes Shoot, could not be contacted about its plans.
News of the forthcoming launches comes in the same week that Keith
Young, owner of Parliamentary Communications, announced he will launch
Britain’s first daily sports newspaper, Sport First, on 6 June.
The broadsheet will focus on football but cover other sports. It will be
edited by Bob Harris, former executive sports editor of the Sunday
Mirror, who is putting together a team of more than 30 full-time
journalists and IT staff. The title hopes for average daily sales of
100,000 copies to a predominantly male ABC1/C2 readership.
However, advertising agencies are sceptical about whether the market can
sustain further sports titles after a hectic round of launch activity
last year. Both Emap and Haymarket did well with their respective titles
Match and Four Four Two. Match, the biggest-selling sports magazine,
passed the 200,000 copies sales mark for the first time in its 15 year
history and Four Four Two sales rose by 25 per cent to 83,000.