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Posts Tagged ‘Muscle & Fitness’

Muscle & Fitness Aims to Pack a Punch in India

Wednesday, January 28th, 2009

Fitness enthusiasts will soon have help at hand. All those body-building tips they yearn for will be available in a monthly package. Muscle & Fitness, a US monthly magazine on body building and fitness, is set to hit the stands this summer. Its publisher, American Media Inc, has secured the magazine’s title rights from a local publisher who had been printing the magazine without permission.

Arnold Schwarzenneger, the Hollywood hunk, had worked with the magazine as its Editor-in-Chief for 7 years. Schwarzenneger was groomed by Joe Weider, the magazine’s founder, over 35 years ago.

The lifestyle of sports and film celebrities like Sylvester Stallone, Evander Holyfield, Dwyane Johnson is frequently featured in the magazine. In India, it has Bollwood stars Sanjay Dutt and Salman Khan on its advisory board.

Muscle & Fitness is priced at $5 a issue in the US. Its promoters are also into health-related allied business like sports nutritional products, high-end protein drinks etc. In India, the magazine will be published by Health is Wealth Media Private Ltd, the Indian arm of its US publisher.

“We have managed to secure the title registration for Muscle & Fitness after a two-year legal battle with a local publisher. The publisher had been bringing out the magazine illegally after adding an extra ‘S’ to Muscle and registering the title with the Registrar of Newspapers for India (RNI),” said Raj Makhija, CEO, Health is Wealth.

“We were confident that we will publish the magazine. We had started working with celebrities, guiding them on their muscular and fitness needs. We worked with John Abraham for Dostana for three months in Miami…our protein and health drinks are used by leading cricketers. We may bring in foreign investment of up to $1 million over five years. Initially, our target is a monthly circulation of about 50,000,” added Makhija.

But with recession eating away the advertising revenues to magazines, will the venture survive? Makhija said 50 per cent of the content for the Indian edition will be produced locally to ensure relevant content and possible local advertisements. “This is a specialised magazine for people who are already into fitness and for those aspiring to take fitness religiously. It will have specialised advertising only, related to health and fitness domain, sports, and sporting events…this coupled with subscription by fitness clubs and gymnasiums should work in our favour,” he added.

Either Arnold Schwarzenneger or Sylvester Stallone is expected to come to India for the launch. sometime in July-August. The magazine will be priced at Rs 100.

Over 2-dozen foreign magazines are unable to enter India, despite getting all other necessary government clearances because their titles have been already registered with the RNI by local publishers.