CEO | 944 Media
At age 30, Marc Lotenberg, CEO of 944 Media, has assembled a fast-growing media conglomerate he likes to say is the â€ślargest regional lifestyle media group in the country based on circulation and frequency.â€ť According to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, the company circulates 240,000 magazines across 944â€™s seven markets monthly. In March, 944 acquired the assets of monthly culture and style title Six Degrees, pushing the companyâ€™s total monthly circulation to 330,000â€”or about four million copies per year.
â€śWe are one of the few publications that actually prints what we communicate to our partners and advertisers, and our distribution strategy is unmatched,â€ť Lotenberg says. â€śWeâ€™re a young team, so we also focus on digital and mobile.â€ť
Lotenberg launched 944 Media in Phoenix in fall 2001, financing the project by â€śmaxing outâ€ť eight credit cards. The first issue of 944 hit newsstands in January 2002. About a year and a half later, Lotenberg expanded the brand to San Diego. 944 later launched a Las Vegas edition, with the help of $250,000 from a pair of investors.
â€śOur investors told us if we could make it work, theyâ€™d open up their checkbook for further expansion,â€ť says Lotenberg. â€śAfter we launched a San Francisco edition last June, they increased credit facilities to $10 million.â€ť
944 also publishes editions in Los Angeles, Miami and Orange County, California. Last year, Lotenberg expanded further by launching an in-house events and marketing agency and Ink Grenade, a custom publishing and design firm. His online platform, 944.com, is expanding, too. â€śThe site gets approximately 2.5 million page views and 3.5 million impressions each month, with an e-mail database of about 200,000,â€ť he says.
Lotenberg says 944â€™s revenues were up roughly 7.5 percent in 2008 compared to 2007. Online, he says, accounts for about 10 percent of the overall revenue mix. â€śOur goal for 2010 is to grow online to about 25 percent.â€ť
VITAL STATS: 944 Media has a combined 4 million annual circ., with revenues up roughly 7.5 percent in 2008.