Needham in shock move to US Maxim

Big changes are happening at the US edition of Maxim.

Keith Blanchard, who has been editor-in-chief for the past three years, is moving to Dennis Publishing’s TV and film unit as director of programming.

He is being replaced by Ed Needham, former editor of both the UK and the US editions of FHM and for the past two years managing editor of Rolling Stone.

A changeover had been predicted for several weeks, following a reported decline in Maxim’s news-stand sales and advertising. Once the envy of the industry, Maxim’s news-stands sales were down 15 per cent at the end of last year.

Needham is expected to give the magazine a much needed boost.

During his period at Rolling Stone he is credited with revitalising the magazine and increasing its circulation.

His relations with Jan Wenner, the owner of Rolling Stone – who retained the title of editor – have never reportedly been easy. There were, it is said, many editorial clashes. Nevertheless, Needham’s departure to Maxim took everyone – including Wenner – by surprise A successor at Rolling Stone has not yet been announced.

In his new position at Dennis Publishing, Blanchard will have responsibility for the company’s radio and satellite channels as well as overseeing the production of TV specials on US cable TV, plus the company’s newly formed movie-making unit.

By Jeffrey Blyth in New York

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