MAGAZINE ABC: Take A Break's dominance of traditional weekly market grows

LONDON - H Bauer's market leader Take A Break avoided the worst of the sales slides in the real life and traditional women's weeklies sector as its circulation dropped 2.5% to 920,060 according to the latest magazine ABC figures.

Despite the minor change over the prior six-month period in the seond half of 2008, Take A Break's circulation was down 6.3% compared with its level in the first half of 2008.

IPC, which along with H Bauer dominates this sector, was hit by drops at all of its titles.

Chat, its closest challenger to Take A Break, fell to 434,929 copies per average issue, which was a 7.3% drop over six months and an 11.2% drop over a year.

H Bauer has its own problems with That's Life, which dropped 8.8% over six months to 386,875 and is down 10.8% over a year.

However, its other title Bella enjoyed a rare boost with an 8.9% period-on-period increase to 243,991. A year ago it was selling just 191,547 after a makeover that was poorly received.

Bella is still outsold by several other titles, including IPC's Woman's Weekly, which is now the closest rival to That's Life.

Woman's Weekly registered an ABC of 335,118 copies, down 1.6% period on period.

IPC's Woman registered 331,065 and was down 4.8% period on period, but has overtaken real life stablemate Pick Me Up, which had a disastrous 13.7% slide to 323,171. Pick Me Up is down 21% year on year from 409,112.

Love It!, which was launched against Pick Me Up by News International's now defunct News Magazines division, also suffered. Now owned by Hubert Burda Media, the title's circulation has fallen to 308,304 copies, down 9.2% period on period and 17.2% year on year.

It lies just behind DC Thomson's People's Friend, which dropped 4% period on period to 313,711, and just ahead of IPC's Woman's Own, which dropped 5.5% period on period to 307,407.

NatMag's Best was stable at 296,971, but its Real People fell 7% period on period to 201,960.

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