The big guessing game in the American magazine world at the moment is which well-known publication is the target of Felix Dennis?
In an interview to be published in Folio this week, the noted British publisher revealed that he is negotiating to buy the foreign rights to an American magazine that he believes would sell well in such countries as India, China and Russia. His only other clue is that it is a magazine whose name will surprise everyone.
At the moment it is a magazine that is “perfectly respectable” – but also “totally tedious”. Not one that get’s your juices going, he admits. Dennis believes he can change that, all it needs is some promotion – and investment. Not just in paper, but electronically too.
He believes a deal for the “overseas rights” is near, perhaps within the next two months. All that stands in the way is the suspicion that the American company that owns the magazine will insist on what he calls “schmuck insurance” – that is that he won’t “flip” the magazine and within five to ten years will sell it for a huge profit – and they will be left looking stupid.
He claims he had never heard the term “schmuck insurance” before, not until he started negotiations. Now he says he loves the term, it’s what keeping him busy at the moment – and the only thing that’s delaying a conclusion to the deal.