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Digesting Readers Digest


Is there anything significant or interesting about yet another old familiar household name collapsing? Not really perhaps. The title will almost certainly survive (it has a suprisingly large  500k circulation in the UK) and on the face of it little would have changed.

But there is personal experience angle I could add. I was credit manager for one of Readers Digest’s largest suppliers during the 90’s. We manufactured VHS video tapes and CD’s for this very reliable and genuinely nice client. We had to often extend credit lines of up to £1m, but could we always get all the credit Insurance cover we required? No. Even at a time when insurance cover was remarkably easy to obtain, there were slight issues with Readers Digest.  And if i recall correctly, these revolved around their pension commitments and the stability of the US parent company

The message from this?  Well whether or not it was quite the self same issues that brought the group down or not, company failures can be a very slow burn.  It is often assumed that it takes a suddden shock or horrific decision to bring a company to its knees. This is definately not the case

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