Saveur‘s publisher Merri Lee Kingsly pointed us to an error in the Publishers Information Bureau numbers for the first half of 2009.
In recently released ad page and revenue statistics, PIB said the epicurean magazine was down 14.83 percent compared to the January to June numbers from last year. However, Kingsly said the stats agency had incorrectly compared its January to May numbers from 2009 to January to June numbers from 2008, resulting in a serious error.
A spokesman for the Magazine Publishers of America said the error in Saveur‘s numbers stemmed from the magazine’s June/July double issue. In 2008, ad pages and revenue from that issue were counted towards the first half of the year, but this year those numbers were counted towards the third quarter.
The error has since been corrected, and Saveur‘s real numbers for the first half of 2009 are 193.61 ad pages — up almost 11 percent from last year — and $8.3 million in reported revenue, an increase of 19.2 percent year over year. This growth despite the tough ad environment means Saveur is the fourth top earner for monthly magazines, Kingsly said.
“I realized something was wrong when we didn’t get any press coverage after the PIB released their numbers,” Kingsly said. “I went back and looked at the numbers and realized that there had been a big mistake. We’re very proud of our accomplishments and the fact that we rank fourth in ad pages is huge.”
PIB has recognized its error and promised to post a notice alerting users to the change. In a letter sent to Kingsly obtained by FishbowlNY, PIB president Wayne P. Eadie apologized for the oversight.
“In this incredibly challenging ad environment we can certainly appreciate the importance of correcting this in a timely and appropriate manner, and we apologize for the appearance of other than stellar first half performance for Saveur,” Eadie said.