Brooklands returns to TV tie-tins with music launch

Brooklands has confirmed its first foray into the weekly magazines market with a revival of the Popworld music brand in print.

Popworld Pulp , which launches on 11 April, will be a spin off of the Channel 4 music programme and will be the second incarnation of Popworld as a magazine.

The first was launched in 2002 and was backed by pop svengali Simon Fuller, but collapsed before a full year in print.

The launch is the first Channel 4 extension by Brooklands since it closed a number of TV linked titles last year.

Location, Location, Location, Supernanny, You Are What You Eat and Property Ladder were closed before the end of the year after the publisher said they were collectively unprofitable and it was unwilling to invest further in them.

The music weekly market has become increasingly competitive but stable with both NME and Kerrang!

posting an ABC of 74,206 and 85,377 respectively. Magazines aimed at the younger end of the market have found the going harder and last year Emap’s Smash Hits! and Sneak were both closed.

Hannah Verdier, a former Smash Hits staffer, will edit Popworld Pulp. She previously worked on MTV.com and launched AOL’s teen site. Verdier said she was under no illusions about the challenge to make the title work in print, but said the competitive cover price, £1.49, and the magazine’s irreverent, inclusive take on music, would win over readers. It will focus on new music and cater for a wide range of tastes including emo), R&B, indie pop and rock.

It will also feature user-generated content, using Popworld’s two websites to provide reader ratings and opinion.

The title is aimed at the 16-24-year-old market, but Verdier said she hoped it would reach readers as young as 14 who were using the MySpace website to tap into new bands and were attending under-18s gigs.

Colin Hubbuck, who was on the launch team of Emap’s Zoo, is deputy editor at the title and the zippy style of Emap weeklies is understood to have influenced the new launch. The magazine has an editorial and commercial team of 11.

On its place on the newsstand Verdier said: “We come out on the same day as NME and Kerrang!and we’re cheaper than them – so they are the main two competitors. But I don’t see that we are going to come in and just compete with them. I think people who used to read Smash Hits! and also people who read Nuts and Zoo might pick it up because they want a fast read about music.”

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