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Magazine Publishers Worth Estimated at $58 million

08 Oct 2009

Ash Hunter, the head of the Hunter 5 group, which includes automotive publishing arm Just Magazines, made this year's Young Rich List edition of BRW placing him 28th with an estimated worth of $58 million.


"I wasn't very happy about it," Hunter told The Australian.


"We tried very, very hard to get off the list. I tried negotiating my way off for weeks and weeks and weeks. But once we realised we couldn't get off we decided to use it to our advantage and use the increased profile to increase the profile of our products."


Hunters father Shayne published a number of automotive magazines, including Unique Cars and Deals-on-Wheels which were sold to ACP Magazines.


After selling those to ACP Magazines, Shayne founded Just Magazines with the launch of Just Bikes in 1989.


Following the death of his father 11 years ago, Hunter took over the family business and its portfolio now also includes Just Cars, Just 4x4s, Just Parts and Just Trucks & Heavy Equipment.


The publishing arm accounts for slightly more than half of Hunter 5's business, which Ash Hunter has also expanded into a music label, a commercial property company, a food services manufacturing business and a glass factory.


The flagship title Just Cars increased its readership by 2.6 per cent from 227,000 to 233,000 in the year to June, according to the latest Roy Morgan readership survey.


Hunter says more Just titles are in the pipeline, all in the automotive area.


"My view is that niche is the way of the future and that really shapes how we're going to expand," he told The Australian.


"We're not interested in trying to go head-to-head with any of the majors out there."


Hunter was left as the media industry's sole representative on the Young Rich List this year after Jim Flynn and Nathan Berkley, co-founders of another specialist publisher, Derwent Howard Media, were taken off due to uncertainty surrounding the viability of their business, as previously reported in Publishing Edge.



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