Is Playboy Screwed?

playboy_harkleroad.jpgThe magazine Hugh Hefner started is in serious trouble. During a conference call yesterday, interim CEO Jerome Kern said the company lost $156.1 million in 2008, which is terrible considering it posted a $4.9 million profit the previous year. When asked if Playboy might sell off its namesake magazine, Kern responded, “Yes, we’re open to discussions.”

Even before yesterday’s announcement, the media world knew Playboy was having a tough year. First, it eliminated 80 jobs. Then, CEO Christie Hefner left. Just last month, it moved to Chicago, bumping digital head Jimmy Jellinek up to editorial director and kicking former ed Christopher Napolitano, who refused to relocate his family to the Windy City, to editor-at-large.

Who knows what’s in store for the famous mag, but it ain’t good.