US teen magazine Seventeen could launch in the UK if new owner the Hearst Corporation decides to boost its presence overseas.
Hearst announced the purchase of Seventeen from Primedia last week.
Launched in 1944, Seventeen claims to be the largest monthly beauty/fashion magazine in the US for females aged between 12 and 24. According to Hearst, it reaches one in two US teenagers.
The title was originally put on the market for $200m (£125m) but the price fell to $180m after several bidders, including CondÃ© Nast, pulled out. The acquisition is expected to boost Hearst’s presence in the US teen market following the success of its Cosmopolitan spin-off CosmoGIRL!.
Given the launch of UK editions of Esquire and, more recently, CosmoGIRL!, which has eight editions worldwide, there is a possibility that the National Magazine Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Hearst Corporation, may also consider bringing it to the UK.
Terry Mansfield, a director of the Hearst Corporation, said it was possible but stressed that the US was four years ahead of the UK in terms of magazine publishing. He told Press Gazette: “It is a possibility, but our immediate priority is developing the newly launched CosmoGIRL!.
“We have acquired GrÃ¼ner + Jahr and Aim Publications and Hearst has done tremendous work in developing the Oprah magazine.”
Mansfield added: “We are global players and at the end of the day the teen market in the UK is very exciting. I am not saying we are going to bring it to the UK, but as with all of our acquisitions, Hearst will be looking at the international potential.” The acquisition is expected to be complete by the second quarter of 2003. The purchase also includes 14 international editions, a number of Seventeen spin-off publications and teen website seventeen.com.
Despite speculation that there will be too much overlap between CosmoGIRL! and Seventeen, Hearst says the titles will operate independently with separate editors and publishers.
By Ruth Addicott