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Readly building a platform for the magazine industry - over 13 million digital magazine issues sold in 2017

Press release   •   Feb 15, 2018 21:29 GMT

As the magazine industry pores over the latest set of ABC figures, with the usual picture of mixed results, Readly, the digital magazine newsstand, has delivered a massive 53% year-on-year rate of growth for the July to December 2017 period. Looking across the full year, Readly cleared over 13.2m issues read: in 2017, Readly subscribers opened 13,231,960 issues of UK magazine brands. This compares with only 1.3m in its first year of operation in 2014 – a tenfold increase in three years.

Readly’s growth rate in the UK accelerated from the second half of 2016 on. This has been the result of a big increase in consumer promotional activity through partners, such Vodafone and McDonalds, as well as mainstream advertising – Readly has recently been using Channel 4 TV ad campaigns – and a growing social media presence.

Ranj Begley, Readly UK’s Managing Director, said: “While pushing up our subscriber numbers, both in the UK and overseas, remains a key priority, we have been putting more stress on subscriber engagement, encouraging our existing subscribers to read more. Back in 2015, the average Readly reading time was 5 hours per month; this has now risen to 7.5 hours. We are becoming more embedded in our customers’ lives, with 40% of Readly subscribers using the app every day. The average is 4.5 reading sessions per week with each session typically lasting for 22 minutes.”

Readly is the UK’s leading digital newsstand and has pioneered the all-you-can-read subscription with a monthly fee of £7.99 which gives consumers access to a range of 620 UK magazine brands as well as a growing inventory of over a thousand international titles.

Working more closely with publishers

Begley: “As our subscriber numbers grow, we are working even more closely with publishers to complement their own direct-to-consumer activity. This is based on three key factors:

  • First, Readly is reaching new consumers in a new way – what most publisher-direct activity finds difficult to achieve cost-effectively. A large proportion of our users also have subscriptions to services such as Netflix, Spotify and Amazon Prime – they often have different demands of what a “magazine subscription” should deliver. This is a largely new audience for most publishers and is growing their total footprint. Linked to this, much of our increase in reading times is due to on-the-move “snacking” which is what the Readly service is designed to cater for rather than just the traditional at-home “me-time” print experience.
  • Second, as the whole background noise of the internet becomes louder and the cost of maintaining a digital presence rises, Readly provides a high-profile platform for publishers in an intensely competitive channel with no upfront costs or risk.
  • Third, publishers are beginning to use the really granular data we generate on how their magazines – both the editorial and advertising – are being consumed. We often work with them to help tweak and improve their products.”

Our latest growth figures prove that Readly has become an important promotional shop window for the whole magazine industry as well as delivering both revenue and insight at the same time.”

All about READLY

Readly is a digital service which lets customers have unlimited, “all-you-can-read” access to hundreds of national and international magazines in one app for just £7.99 per month – both streamed and downloaded. Ultra-fast, easy-to-use and convenient – each subscriber can access the inventory on up to 5 devices across the major operating systems – the service has an increasing range of functions, including advanced zoom, bookmark, search and sharing tools. In addition to all the consumer benefits, Ready offers a powerful, risk-free route to market for publishers who can also track how their content is being consumed.

The Readly operation was launched in Sweden in March 2013, but now has offices in the UK, USA and Germany and a rapidly growing user base in more than 50 countries, making it the world’s leading digital platform for reading magazines online. Readly UK started operation in the Spring of 2014 and now deals with 80 UK publishers, promoting 620 UK magazine brands, in addition to a growing inventory of over 1,000 international titles.

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