Haymarket revs up to take on bikers market

Two Wheels Only: relaunching

Haymarket Publishing has entered the motorcycling market by acquiring Two Wheels Only, the independent magazine that was launched last April by a group of former IPC and Emap journalists.

The company is setting up a motorcycle division at its Teddington headquarters and plans to invest heavily in the title, which will be relaunched.

Grant Leonard, who was Superbike Magazine publisher at IPC before he left to form Two Media, is publishing director of the new division. Simon Bowen, also a founder of Two Media, is commercial director.

Emap Active is currently the biggest player in the motorbike magazine market, publishing Bike, Motor Cycle News (MCN), Performance Bikes and Ride. Leonard said: "We will be going head-to-head with Emap’s Bike magazine. We’ve been slightly starved of investment but we will now have an intense promotional campaign.

"Having Haymarket’s tremendous resources behind the magazine will give us everything we need to get TWO to market leadership," he added.

Haymarket had previously concentrated on the motoring sector and currently publishes What Car?, Autocar, Autosport, F1 Racing, Motorsport News, Motor Sport and Classic and Sports Car.

Haymarket managing director Simon Daukes said: "Building on TWO’s achievements is an ideal way for Haymarket to enter the motorcycling arena. We’re extremely keen to be in this market.

"We think our editorial excellence and understanding of enthusiastic audiences – so well-proven in motoring, football, consumer electronics and other areas – can be applied to great effect in the bike sector. We’re taking this very seriously and we’ll be on full throttle."

The nine editorial staff on the magazine have moved to the Teddington offices and Pat Eggington, who has previously worked on market leader MCN, will be joining TWO as publisher. Motoring journalist Steve Cropley will be an adviser to the magazine.

Leonard said Haymarket would be looking at more launches and more acquisitions within the sector following TWO’s relaunch.

Last year, he said the industry was experiencing the biggest boom in 20 years, but that motorbike journalists were disenfranchising potential readers by being "a little bit up their own backsides".

lA new independent magazine for motorcycling enthusiasts launched this week. Motorcycle Voyager will cover biking in exotic locations, world travel and off-roading as well as news, events and book reviews.

News, page 8

By Mary Stevens

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