A regional publisher learns from lean times how to adapt, flourish, and position itself for an even brighter future
By Katy Ibsen
It was spring of 2017, just shy of the one-year anniversary of our acquisition by a larger publishing company. I sat across the table from our various new directors, reviewing Sunflower Publishing’s business strategy. We’re a small city/regional magazine publishing group. Our new owner, Ogden Publications, Inc., is a national consumer magazine publisher.
With a pinch of pride, I ran through the many titles we publish, the clients with whom we work, and the seven full-time employees who make up our staff. We were on pace for 67 publishing events for the year. Of that tally, 52 percent was self-published work and 48 percent was custom publishing. We had forecasted over $1.7 million in gross revenue with a near 30 percent profit margin.
As I digested my own spoken words, I realized why our new ownership had been so intrigued with Sunflower Publishing: We had created an efficient and profitable approach to city/regional publishing.