Wide net cast for next Arena editor six months after Giles Hattersley exit

Bauer Consumer Media owned men’s monthly Arena has been casting a wide net to attract a new editor since Giles Hattersley returned to his job as Sunday Times chief interviewer in March after just a year at the helm.

Press Gazette has learned that Bauer has been approaching editors and senior staff on a number of men’s magazines, but has struggled to fill the post.

Hattersley joined the title in early 2007 and relaunched it with more of a fashion edge. The redesign failed to stem losses with a monthly circulation of 25,532 in the second half of 2007, down 27 per cent year on year.

Arena executive editor Mat Smith who had worked on the magazine for six years, took charge of the title on an interim basis, but left last month to join Esquire. Anthony Noguera, group editor-in-chief of Arena and stablemate FHM, is in charge of the title until a replacement editor is found.

An editor of one rival magazine said that Bauer had been ‘casting a wide net’to fill the role within the magazine and newspaper industry, and a senior editor of another rival title said that candidates might be questioning the future of the title.

He said: ‘It seems a lot of people have been asked and a lot of people have turned it down.”

According to one industry source, Arena is expected to report another ABC decrease when the six-month magazine industry figures are released next week.

But a spokesperson for Bauer said: ‘Arena will deliver a healthy ABC and we look forward to announcing a new editor shortly.”

Also set for another decline in sales is Dennis’s struggling men’s monthly Maxim, which was reported to have sold just 24,000 copies of its April issue. Its average circulation for the last six months of 2007 was down 40 per cent year on year to 78,463.

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