Magazines News South Africa

Zigzag relaunches with two print editions a year

The local surfing magazine Zigzag will print two bumper, premium editions per year, Winter and Summer, starting this July.
Image supplied. Zigzag, South Africa's surfing magazine will relaunch with two print editions a year
Image supplied. Zigzag, South Africa's surfing magazine will relaunch with two print editions a year

Zigzag is the third longest-running surf print magazine in the world and established itself as the mouthpiece of the South African surfing community and the global authority on surfing in Africa.

Last year it was announced that the print edition would end in December 2023, which has been in print since 1976.

Recently it was acquired by the Rebel Media Group, a European media and marketing conglomerate and dedicated youth culture specialist, which says it continues to publish Zigzag across print, digital, and social media platforms.

The Rebel Media Group (Rebel Media) specialises in niche board and youth sports productions. No stranger to the South African surfing scene, it is the creator of the Rebel Sessions big wave events held at Dungeons in Cape Town.

Under Rebel Media aims to increase the value through more pages, better quality paper and print production, with the same original and excellent long-form surf content readers have come to know and love for almost 50 years.

Zigzag’s online and social media operations will generate fresh content and projects, with several new Zigzag initiatives planned for the second half of the year.

Embrace more African continental surf movement

Christian Herles from Rebel Media Group says Zigzag has been the flagship voice of South African surf culture for 48 years, and now is the time to embrace more of the African continental surf movement.

“The plan is to produce content across our various touchpoints to bring this knowledge to the European surf tribes… and vice versa. Through Zigzag, the European and African surf cultures will get to know each other better, allowing for a deeper understanding and enjoyment of the amazing people, locations, and experiences we can all have in each other's turfs," says Herles.

Herles adds that the support of Rebel Media’s other publishing assets such as Prime’s skiing, surfing, MTB, snowboarding, and WavePoolMag will enable Zigzag to tap into the different core audiences who ‘share these values’.

Experienced local team

Aside from Rebel Media's input, there is an experienced local team on Zigzag.

Greg Ewing returns as managing editor and archivist.

After over two decades in the fold, his intimate knowledge of the brand and high-quality visuals will prove invaluable in sourcing A-grade surfing content while supporting Zigzag's loyal visual contributors and nurturing the next generation of African surf content creators.

He is also responsible for preserving and digitising Zigzag's extensive archive, documenting South African and African surfing culture and expression.

Commenting on this new journey, Ewing says: “After working on the last Zag and seeing the reaction and feedback, it really hit home how strong the brand Zigzag is and how it has a place in so many people's lives, far beyond surfing. I’m really happy that it lives on and excited to be involved in the next chapter.”

Jazz Kuschke has climbed aboard and will take charge of Zigzag's editorial across all the magazine’s channels: print, digital, and live. He is a heavyweight editor, journalist, content marketing specialist and a longtime Zigzag contributor.

His extensive experience includes contributions to Red Bull, The Mission flyfishing magazine, and niche titles and brands such as Men’s Health and Bicycling, among others.

“The surf industry and media landscape have both evolved significantly over the past decade and with this new incarnation, Zigzag is perfectly positioned,” says Kuschke. “Zigzag is the pinnacle of surf journalism in Africa and I can’t be prouder to bear the torch — it feels like everything I’ve done in my career has built up to this.”

Creating continuity, Zigzag's former owner and publisher Andy Davis will act as an editorial consultant. Davis says this marks a new chapter in Zigzag's long and proud history.

“I was told, when we bought the magazine in 2013, that no one really ‘owns' Zigzag and that we are all just custodians. We hold the line for the community in service of the glory that is surfing in Africa! It has been an honour,” says Davis, adding he is proud to hand over the custodianship of this iconic surfing brand to Rebel Media.

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