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Online Ads Help Drive Growth in Computer Publishing Industry

A 14.8% increase in net revenues among trade computer magazines drove growth in the U.S. market for computer magazines, books, online/electronic-based publications and newsletters, journals and looseleafs in 1997, according to an industry report.

"Computer Publishing Market Forecast 1998" is the latest research report from Simba Information Inc. The U.S. computer publishing market grew 12.1% to an estimated $3.01 billion last year, the report found.

And it is forecast to grow another 14.9% to $3.46 billion in 1998, with the magazine and book segments continuing to dominate the industry. Computer magazines, which represent the largest segment of the industry with a 56.7% market share, are projected to grow revenues 13.3% to $1.93 billion this year.

Growth in revenues from the online/electronic-based segment of the computer publishing market continued to outpace all other market segments in 1997, rising 66.6% to an estimated $233.3 million. The electronic segment, which includes dollars generated via Web advertising and CD-ROMs, is forecast to grow another 50% to $350 million in 1998, the report said.

This growth will continue as the Internet plays an increased role in computer advertisers' media plans and computer newsletter/looseleaf publishers transfer more print content into electronic formats. However, the online/electronic-based segment still represents only a fraction of the overall computer publishing industry, with a 7.7% market share in 1997.

Stamford, CT-based Cowles/Simba Information is a provider of news, analysis and market research reports on the media and information industry.