Able to continue, despite publisher liquidation

ONE of Scotland’s best-known magazine titles has avoided missing a publication deadline, despite the company behind it going into liquidation.

The disability magazine, Able – which has an UK-wide audience – was part of Craven Publishing Ltd, which was put into liquidation by its sole director, Steven Craven, just before Christmas.

Liquidators appointed by the court have sold the rights to the magazine to a new company, Dynamic Publishing Ltd.

Also transferred are the rights to Able’s sister title, Young and Able, and also two other magazines published by Craven: End of Term, aimed at school leavers, and Civvy Street, aimed at Armed Forces personnel preparing to leave. Dynamic also has the rights to the name, ‘Craven Publishing’.

Steven Craven is a shareholder in Dynamic.

Explaining why the titles weren’t marketed more widely, Kenny Craig, a director at Liquidators RSM Tenon, told “The business was sold to Dynamic Publishing Limited on January 5. Time was of the essence as the January edition of Able magazine was overdue and it was essential to have this printed and retain the confidence of the advertisers.”

Craven Publishing Ltd had liabilities totalling £350,000 and a creditors’ meeting is due within the next few weeks. While three members of Craven Publishing staff are understood to have been made redundant last month, Dynamic have retained nine – a mix of editorial and sales.

Steven Craven told allmediascotland: “Facing the reality of the situation in December and being forced to put the company into liquidation on the 23rd was obviously a very sad day, to say the least. Myself and team had made every endeavour to try and turn things around in these tough economic times.

“Over the Christmas shutdown, myself and James Glasgow – editor of the magazine – met with professional advisers to see if there was any way that we could put together the required finances to salvage anything and secure as many jobs going forward as possible. I am pleased that we were able to do that and am delighted to be working with James as a partner and fellow shareholder.

“It was important to maintain continuity for the customers and believe that without the massive overheads associated with Craven and with the new business plan that is in place we will be delivering a far stronger magazine and a much better return on investment for our advertisers from the get-go.”

He added: “2010 saw significant growth in Able’s distribution; 18 per cent to 31,375 via ABC. Now, under Dynamic, we are pushing toward a 45 per cent increase, bringing us over the 50,000 mark. We appreciate that it’s not simple numbers that make a magazine great, however, and – over and above the great strides we are making editorially – our dedicated marketing and distribution teams are ensuring that every issue of Able gets in front of the right audience – disabled people, their carers and healthcare professionals throughout the UK.”