The cost of feeding Playboy’s Girls Next Door…

March 17, 2008

images8.jpegHow much is Playboy (PLA) spending to provide food, housing and other “personal benefits” for Holly Madison, Bridget Marquardt and Kendra Wilkinson, Hugh Hefner’s live-in girlfriends and the stars of The Girls Next Door on the E! Network? About $400K according to the 10-K that Playboy filed on Friday.

Although according to Wikipedia, The Girls Next Door has been around since 2005, this is the first time that Playboy is disclosing these costs in a filing, so it’s hard to say whether the $400K is more or less than in previous years. If you’re as familiar with this show as I was before I began working on this post, you can find more information about its three stars here.

There were a few other interesting disclosures in the Playboy filing: average monthly circulation in 2007 in the U.S. fell by about 200,000 copies to 2.8 million a month. Like most other forms of print media in the U.S., Playboy is definitely losing readers, dropping its guaranteed rate base to 2.6 million copies a month starting in January, down from 3 million.

In other countries, where Playboy licenses 24 different editions, circulation fell by 100,000 copies for a month, despite the fact that in 2007, the company added international editions in Columbia, Estonia and Georgia. Judging by the filing, the company ended its licensing agreement to publish in Indonesia, where despite not publishing any nude photos, the magazine was still pretty controversial.

One final note about Playboy: according to this Reuters story, Norway’s $378 billion sovereign wealth fund is being criticized by several groups in Norway for owning about $125,000 worth of Playboy stock.

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