Saving Single Copy Sales

The realities behind magazine distribution

David Pecker
American Media

Several years ago, I had the honor of being the keynote speaker at the ABC Conference. The topic of my remarks was the challenge we as publishers would be facing at the newsstand.

I stated that there would be enormous difficulties in getting our magazines to the newsstand if the consolidation of wholesalers and retailers (which at that time was just beginning) continued. I also predicted that 50 percent of consumer titles would disappear from the newsstand because wholesalers would refuse to distribute them.

Now, it seems, my comments have been proven all too true. The biggest crisis we're facing in the year 2001 and beyond, bigger than postage and paper costs, bigger than the prospect of declining ad revenues, is the chaos – and the possible total collapse – of the magazine distribution system in the United States.