GrindMedia announced today it will stop producing print issues of TransWorld Surf following the magazine’s September book. The news follows GrindMedia’s acquisition of TransWorld’s titles (including TransWorld Business) in late May.
While the print issues will cease, TransworldSURF.com will carry on with Justin Cote and Zander Morton at the helm.
“TW Surf has served the surf community well since its launch in 1999 and has been integral to the growth of popularity of surfing globally,” SVP/Group Publisher Norb Garrett stated. “The current staff is putting out a terrific product, which makes the decision even more difficult. I personally want to thank all of the TW Surf team for their efforts and contributions.”
We caught up with Garrett to learn more about the decision:
When you were going through the process of examining the titles over the last month, what made it apparent that it wasn’t tenable to run three surf titles at this point?
The first question everybody in the industry asked us was “can you do three surf mags?” That was a question we needed to answer first before we did anything else. While we could have on day one just closed TW Surf, which would have made a lot of sense to a lot of people, I really felt that we owed the brand and the market an opportunity for us to understand more about how the brand fit into the space. That was information we couldn’t get until after we had the brand and could have the conversations with advertisers, people in the industry, and even people outside the industry. Over the last month we spent a lot of time asking that question and the answer we came up with was no.
While you were going through that due diligence, what did you personally learn about perceptions of the surf market, perceptions in the industry, and the robustness of surfing at this point?
The surf industry, as we all know, is going through change. Some of the biggest brands and businesses are recalibrating to fit today’s market. The surf industry is a fantastic industry. It is for the most part robust and exciting and forward leaning and continues to see particpation growth and interest outside of the endemic community. Surfing is featured in tons of advertising and hopefully the efforts of the new ASP will help the sport grow even larger. Our decision to close one of three print magazines shouldn’t be seen as a reflection of a hurting industry, it’s more a reflection of us recognizing that it’s the best way for us to move forward as a business.