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POM hires former Bike editors, will launch mountain bike title

Published November 17, 2020

BOULDER, Colo. (BRAIN) — Pocket Outdoor Media is expanding deeper into bicycle media and adding scale to its Active Pass membership by hiring five Bike magazine editors who were furloughed this fall. The crew will lead the effort to launch a new mountain bike title in 2021.

A360 Media announced in October that it would furlough Bike’s staff and immediately “pause” the magazine as well as several of its other outdoor media titles. 

Pocket will launch the new brand with a website in December; the first of four quarterly print issues will be published in the first quarter of 2021.

Pocket’s other bike-related brands include Bicycle Retailer & Industry News, VeloNews, VeloPress, VeloGear, Roll Massif and Triathlete

Mountain biking is one of the most common activities among readers of all POM media titles, which include ski, running, yoga, climbing and wellness brands, said Pocket’s CEO, Robin Thurston.

“Twenty-six percent of Pocket’s 29 million followers ride mountain bikes,” Thurston said. 

While VeloNews covers some mountain bike competition and product news, a dedicated mountain bike title was an obvious opportunity to expand Pocket’s connection to all parts of the cycling world. The new title will add value to the Active Pass membership while the mountain bike interest among all Pocket’s readers will make it easier to launch a new title.

“By syndicating mountain bike content across the total network we will have an incredible head start at building traffic and circulation,” Thurston said.

Thurston said Pocket will reveal the title’s new brand in December. Internally it is known as “the Phoenix Project.”

Pocket hired Bike’s former editor-in-chief, Nicole Formosa, along with Ryan Palmer, Anthony Smith, Travis Engel, and Satchel Cronk.

“Hiring this team makes a statement about our faith in the power of great content,” Thurston said. “Yes, brands can be important, but artful storytelling is our north star.” 

Formosa (who was BRAIN’s international editor before joining Bike in 2013), said the new title will reach a broad audience of recreational mountain bikers, including those who discovered or re-discovered the sport during the pandemic. It will provide category-leading photography and product reviews and expanded video offerings, she said.

“We’re so excited to build on the long legacy of Bike magazine, as well as reach a new audience through Pocket Outdoor Media’s wide-ranging community of folks who love being outdoors,” Formosa said.

“The Bike-born ethos of long-form storytelling, beautiful photography, authoritative gear reviews and compelling video projects will Iive on in this new project, alongside a greater focus on creating more daily engagement, expanding our sense of community, and creating greater inclusivity for riders from all backgrounds and skill levels. We can’t wait to get started.”

For editorial inquiries, contact Formosa at For advertising and other partnership inquiries, contact Rob Hudson at

Besides the bike-related brands, Pocket’s portfolio includes Yoga Journal, SKI, Backpacker, Climbing, Women’s Running, Better Nutrition, Clean Eating, SNEWS, The Voice, the Fly Fishing Film Tour, Oxygen, Podium Runner, TrailRunner, Gym Climber, Rock & Ice, Paleo, Muscle & Performance, and Warren Miller Entertainment. Pocket’s most recent acquisition was of the event photography company FinisherPix, which it added in November. 

In 2020, Pocket launched Active Pass for its endurance brands, with benefits that include exclusive premium content, VeloPress books, magazine subscriptions, Roll Massif event access, and training plans through a strategic partnership with Today’s Plan. Active Pass will roll out across the entire POM network in the coming months.

Staff members of the new title on a recent meeting in Utah. Anthony Smith photo.

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