Playboy Enterprises CEO Dissects Past, Present, Future

About the only thing Playboy Enterprises Inc. CEO Scott Flanders did not divulge to entrepreneur.com senior writer Kim Lachance Shandrow is the company’s current earnings. Otherwise, the 58-year-old exec was notably candid and specific about where the company has come from under his watch, where it now stands and how it might evolve.

One of the first things Flanders did after arriving in 2009 was slash company staff. Of the 535 non-Playboy mansion staffers on the payroll when he came in, only 11 remain. The CEO also bought back from Manwin the rights to playboy.com, which he had previously sold:

Last spring, Playboy recaptured full control of playboy.com “at significant expense” and relaunched it in August.

… Flanders says the consumer reaction to the overhauled site has exceeded his expectations. With a healthy bump in traffic from Playboy’s popular Facebook page, the number of unique visitors per month has quadrupled since June, a Playboy representative notes, from a low of four million uniques to an estimated 14.5 million last month.

Cash from that Manwin deal enabled Flanders to do a number of different things, including very profitably expand the licensing of some of the brand’s assets into China. He tells Lachance Shandrow that the magazine itself is currently breaking even.