25% decrease in sales, magazines are disappearing


The magazine industry is on a clear decline.

According to the ‘2020 Magazine Industry Survey’ published by the Korea Press Foundation on the 26th, the sales of 1777 magazine businesses in the survey population as of 2019 were about 7775 billion won, a 24.9% decrease from the 2017 survey. Considering that the sales amounted to KRW 1.862.5 billion in 2012, the sales of the magazine decreased by more than 1 trillion in 7 years after the popularization of smartphones, and the influence of the magazines sharply decreased.

The number of magazines issued per year was an average of 64,575 as of 2019, a noticeable decrease from 2017 when it was 9,258. The average sales per business also decreased by 15% over the past two years to 438 million won, down to a third level from 1.25 billion won in 2012. The largest annual sales volume of the population businesses was’less than 100 million won’ at 44.9%. The rate of closure of magazine companies was also 8.5%, a significant increase from 2.6% in 2017.

Of the 1475 responding magazines, 61.4% of paid magazines and 38.6% of free magazines were found, but in terms of circulation, the number of paid copies was 31,073 (43.4%) and the number of free copies was 33,502 (56.6 %). The average selling price per magazine is 1367 won. The sales composition was in the order of magazine sales revenue 39.6%, advertising revenue 34.2%, and other revenue 23.9%. The composition of the magazine industry expenditure was in the order of printing production cost 41.3%, labor cost 26.2%, article/content production cost (coverage cost, manuscript fee, etc.) 14.5%, and distribution cost (mail, courier, etc.) 10.2%.

The number of workers in the magazine industry was 9104, a 25.1% decrease from the 2017 survey (12,154 people). Compared to 2012 (17,748), the number of workers decreased by about half. The average number of employees per company was 5.1, with 39.8% of businesses with 2 or less employees and 35.1% of 3-5 companies. 76.5% of the workers were regular workers, and by job, 32.8% were journalists and 28.5% were photography, editing and design jobs.

The distribution of magazines was in the order of online/offline subscription 44.3%, offline 25.6%, and online 8.3%. 45.2% of respondents said that they are conducting online services. 20.7% of respondents said,’It is not currently implemented, but there are plans for online services in the future’. Newspapers are subject to deductions from this year, but magazines are not subject to deductions. It is highly likely that the magazine industry has contracted further in the aftermath of last year’s Corona 19. The magazine industry survey has been conducted every other year since 2011.

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