Dauphin Media Group, until recently the Toronto-based contract publishers of Holmes magazine, has been selected by the National Football League (NFL) to publish NFL Magazine. The decision has prompted some head-scratching among U.S. media types who have never heard of the company.
Adweek magazine published an online item about the "obscure Canadian publisher" in which it referred to Dauphin's sketchy track record, most recently in a dispute with the Holmes Group that resulted in suspension of the eponymous magazine (and, possibly, a future day in court.)
Despite how peculiar the choice of Dauphin may seem, NFL vp of media strategy and development Kevin LaForce defended the partnership, telling the [New York] Post, “It’s a small shop out of Canada. We did our diligence and we feel comfortable they can execute.” He added that, under their licensing deal, Dauphin will pay a fee and share ad revenue with the NFL. The magazine’s first issue debuts next month.
The Post reported that the monthly magazine will have a distribution of 400,000 copies and a cover price of $4.99 and a subscription at $19.99.
An NFL press release quoted LaForce:
"Every issue of NFL Magazine will offer advertisers a unique vehicle for accessing avid NFL fans. We have more than 180 million fans who spend nearly two hours each week reading about the NFL; as the League's magazine, NFL Magazine will provide fans with unparalleled access to the game of football."Dauphin Media also publishes Canadian Architecture & Design Magazine and had announced last October that it was intending to launch a men's magazine called The Male Perspective. The company opened a New York office last January on the strength of the success of Holmes (launched in November 2009) in both Canada and the U.S. However a dispute apparently over royalty payments and distribution reporting led Dauphin to suspend Holmes effective December. The Holmes Group is looking for a new publishing partner.