Revealed: Emap magazines' real ABCs

Emap was forced to strip out bulks and non-controlled free copies after being found guilty of infringing ABC rules over multiple sales.
Emap released new ABC figures for 14 of its titles, including Red, Top SantŽ, New Woman, Pregnancy & Birth, Here’s Health and FHM. It has pledged not to include bulks in its figures again.
According to the new figures, Q now shows a year-on-year drop of 20 per cent for the six months to the end of June – almost twice as much as the 10 per cent fall it previously claimed.
Q’s revised figure of 160,950 is also considerably lower than its previously claimed ABC, which was 180,168 for the period ending June 2002.
Mixmag revealed a 26.2 per cent drop to 74,070, compared with the marginal 0.1 per cent decline and ABC of 100,336 reported in August.
Smash! Hits has posted a fall of 27 per cent as opposed to its original claimed 4.3 per cent decline. Its new circulation figure is 145,149, against a previous figure of 190,177.
The Face has suffered an increased drop, posting a new figure of 48,913 and a fall of 19 per cent compared with its previous ABC of 52,119 and decline of 13.3 per cent.
Arena now reports sales of 31,418 and a year-on-year drop of 32 per cent, compared with its earlier claim to be down 24 per cent.
Another casualty was Here’s Health, which has owned up to a 10.1 per cent drop instead of a claimed 0.1 per cent decrease.
Chris Boyd, chief executive of ABC, said it was a routine inspection. "Emap has co-operated fully and worked closely with ABC to identify the extent of the issue so that the details could be brought to the market without delay," he said.
Emap singled out Arena, Mixmag, Q, Smash! Hits and Here’s Health as the key titles affected. It said the rest were "inconsequential".
Although Emap claimed the question of compensation was largely negated because advertisers knew the bulk copies were delivered to relevant audiences, Paul Thomas, managing partner at buying agency MindShare, told Press Gazette: "If there are substantial falls we will have conversations to see what Emap will do about compensation. I would look at the percentage drop and look at getting back the percentage of money we invested."

Ruth Addicott

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