PLBY Group

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PLBY Group, Inc.
Founded1953; 70 years ago (1953) in Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
FounderHugh Hefner
HeadquartersChicago, Illinois, U.S. (1953–2012)
Los Angeles, California, U.S. (2012-present)
Area served
Key people
Suhail Rizvi
Ben Kohn
(President and CEO)
RevenueIncrease $147.7 million (2020)[1]
Increase $13.61 million (2020)[1]
Decrease −$5.27 million (2020)[1]
Total assetsDecrease $412.13 million (2020)[1]
Total equityDecrease $83.02 million (2020)[1]
Number of employees
211 (2020)[2]
SubsidiariesPlayboy Enterprises
Lovers Edit this at Wikidata

PLBY Group, Inc. is an American global media and lifestyle company founded by Hugh Hefner as Playboy Enterprises, Inc. to oversee the Playboy magazine and related assets. Its headquarters are in Los Angeles, California.[2]

The company is focused on four primary business lines: Sexual Wellness, Style & Apparel, Gaming and Lifestyle, and Beauty & Grooming.[3][4] Today, PLBY Group, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the development and distribution of content, products and high-profile events that embody both "eroticism and fine art", alongside wellness[citation needed] and apparel retailing.[5] It is in the top twenty most licensed brands globally.[6]


Sales of Playboy magazine peaked in 1972 at over 7 million copies.[7] By 2015, the circulation had fallen to 800,000.[8] The company completed its shift to consumer products in 2020 with the shuttering of the magazine division, and is now known to generate more than $3 billion in consumer spending annually across 180 countries.[9]

Playboy Enterprises, Inc. made its initial public offering on November 3, 1971, at $23.50.[10]

Playboy ran forty Playboy Club properties from 1960 to 1986 and operated casinos in England from the mid-1960s to 1981, when they lost their operating license. Playboy also operated a casino in Nassau, Bahamas, from 1978 to 1982.[11] From 1981 to 1984, the company was a partner in the Playboy Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Playboy Enterprises was denied a permanent New Jersey gaming license and was forced to sell out to its partner, which changed the name of the hotel/casino to the Atlantis Hotel and Casino. The company returned to the nightlife business with the Playboy Club at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, which opened in 2006[12] and closed in 2012.[13] Other Playboy Clubs opened in Cancun, Macau, and London in 2010 and 2011.[14] Meanwhile, the company said it would open at least three Playboy stores in each of the next three years.[15]

The Age reported in October 2008 that, for the first-time ever, Hugh Hefner was selling tickets to his celebrity-filled parties to offset his cash-flow problems due to setbacks Playboy Enterprises had suffered, including decreasing Playboy circulation, decreasing stock value, and ventures that have yet to turn a profit.[16] Christie Hefner released a memo to employees about her efforts to streamline the company's operations, including eliminating its DVD division and laying off staff.[17]

In March 2011, founder Hugh Hefner succeeded in a bid to take Playboy Enterprises private after 40 years as a publicly traded company. He partnered with private equity firm Rizvi Traverse.[18]

Playboy Enterprises closed its former headquarters in the top office floors of 680 N. Lake Shore Drive in Chicago, Illinois, in April 2012.[19] In January 2013, the company said it employed 165.[4]

In 2018, less than a year after Hugh Hefner's death, his estate sold its remaining Playboy shares of 33%, worth $35 million, to Icon Acquisition Holdings LP. The money was split between Hefner's widow and his four children.[20]

On 18 March 2020, CEO Ben Kohn announced that the Spring issue of the magazine would be the last to be printed, and the publication would be online-only going forward.[21]

In October 2020, Playboy Enterprises announced a reverse merger with Mountain Crest Acquisition Corp, a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). On 11 February 2021, PLBY Group, Inc. completed its merger and began trading on the Nasdaq stock market under the PLBY ticker. PLBY Group, Inc. and its subsidiaries, including Playboy Enterprises, is headed by Ben Kohn, chief executive officer, president and director.[22][23]


The company has three reportable segments: Licensing, which includes licensing of Playboy brands to third parties; Direct-to-Consumer, including sales of third-party products through its owned-and-operated e-commerce platforms; and Digital Subscriptions and Content, including the sale of subscriptions to Playboy programming and trademark licensing for online gaming products.

As of the 2020 re-organization the business had four main market categories:

  • Sexual Wellness, comprising own-branded lingerie and sexual amenities including CBD products. This segment contributed over 40% to revenue in 2020.[24]
  • Style & Apparel, comprising licensed fashion sales globally, especially in China, where it is the leading men's fashion brand with over 3500 stores. This segment contributed around 52% of revenue in 2020.[24]
  • Gaming and Lifestyle, comprising its chain of licensed Playboy Clubs and digital gaming ventures in partnership with Scientific Games and Microgaming.[25] This segment contributed 3% to 2020 revenue.[24]
  • Beauty & Grooming, comprising skincare, beauty and grooming products. This segment contributed around 2% to revenue in 2020.[24]

The company's Playboy Foundation provides grants to non-profit groups involved in fighting censorship and researching human sexuality.


The company licenses the Playboy name, the Rabbit Head design and other images, trademarks, and artwork to "appear on a wide range of consumer products including apparel, accessories, footwear, lingerie, jewelry, fragrances and home fashions." Its licensed products generate "more than $3 billion in global sales in more than 180 countries."[26] The company's trademarks and copyrights are critical to the success and potential growth of its business as "Playboy is one of the most recognized, celebrated and popular consumer brands in the world."[27] In 2019, Playboy ranked number 21 among the Top 150 Global Licensors by License Global magazine.[28] As of 2013, the licensing accounts for about 65% of revenue.[29]

PB Lifestyle Ltd. is promoted by Mumbai-based entrepreneurs. Following their interests in media and entertainment, PB Lifestyle Ltd. has signed the master and exclusive franchise/licensee agreement with Playboy Enterprises USA (for ten years) for the use of the Playboy brand in India for various businesses.[30] PB Lifestyle representatives have also stated that the company will adapt the Playboy brand to suit India's decency standards and will not allow content/material that is deemed "lascivious or appealing to prurient interests".[31]

Playboy first entered the Chinese market in a 1988 licensing deal with Hong Kong-based Chaifa Group. By the early 1990s, Licenses were divided into subcategories of products and sold to mainland manufacturers. The company claimed roughly 650 stores by 2003.[32] This had grown to 3100 by 2015.[33] The company has attempted to open a club in Shanghai, once in 2004,[34] and again in 2017.[35] In May 2015, Playboy signed a 10-year licensing agreement with Handong United to manufacture and distribute fashion apparel.[33]


In December 2019, Playboy Enterprises acquired the online retailer Yandy for an undisclosed sum.[24] In February 2021, PLBY announced the acquisition of the sexual wellness retailer Lovers for $25m in cash.[36][37] In October 2021 Plby Group acquired Dream, a social content platform that provides creators with tools to interact directly with their fans. This acquisition was used to support the launch of Playboys creator community that has gone live at the 20th December 2021.


  1. ^ a b c d e "PLBY Group Reports Fourth Quarter & Full Year 2020 Financial Results" (Press release). 23 March 2021. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  2. ^ a b "PLBY Group, Inc. Propectus". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  3. ^ "Playboy Men's Grooming –". Archived from the original on 4 November 2021.
  4. ^ a b Stattmann, Dean (19 May 2021). "The New (Old) Playboy". Men's Journal.
  5. ^ Lee, Chris (14 September 2013). "To Playboy magazine, sophistication is the new sexy". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  6. ^ "About". PLBY Group. Retrieved 19 March 2021.
  7. ^ "The Girls Next Door". The New Yorker. 20 March 2006.
  8. ^ "Hugh Hefner, Who Built Playboy Empire and Embodied It, Dies at 91". The New York Times. 27 September 2017.
  9. ^ Jasinski, Nicholas (11 February 2021). "Playboy Has Gone Public. Here's What to Know". Barron's. Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  10. ^ "Playboy Enterprises, Inc". 26 March 2006. Archived from the original on 26 March 2006. Retrieved 9 February 2023.
  11. ^ Playboy Chips and Tokens – The Rise and Fall of the Bunny Chip PDF
  12. ^ Bracelin, Jason (7 October 2006). "Bunnies Are Back: Palms' Fantasy Tower takes Playboy Club concept to new heights". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
  13. ^ "Playboy Club at Las Vegas' Palms casino closes". USA Today. AP. 4 June 2012. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
  14. ^ Kee Hua Chee (27 June 2001). "Playboy Bunnies a tourist attraction". The Star. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
  15. ^ "Playboy Pull A Rabbit". MSN.
  16. ^ "Party's over for Playboy king Hugh Hefner." The Age 18 October 2008. Retrieved 30 October 2008.
  17. ^ "Playboy Enterprises Does Restructuring; Shutting DVD Division For Online Focus; 80 Positions Will Go." Yahoo! Finance 15 October 2008. Retrieved 30 October 2008.
  18. ^ "Playboy Enterprises, Inc. Announces Closing of Acquisition by Icon Acquisition Holdings, L.P." (Press release). 4 March 2011. Retrieved 4 June 2017.
  19. ^ "Playboy's Move to Los Angeles Set for April 30". 17 January 2012. Archived from the original on 17 April 2012. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
  20. ^ "Hugh Hefner's Family Sells Their Remaining Shares in Playboy". Fortune. 3 August 2018. Retrieved 26 October 2019.
  21. ^ "An Open Letter To Our Team And Partners". Medium. 18 November 2020. Retrieved 13 March 2021.
  22. ^ Jasinski, Nicholas (11 February 2021). "Playboy Has Gone Public. Here's What to Know". Barron's. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
  23. ^ Maurer, Mark (25 March 2021). "Owner of Playboy Brand Looks to Invest SPAC Money in 'Sexual Wellness' Sector". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
  24. ^ a b c d e "Mountain Crest Investor Presentation". Retrieved 13 March 2021.
  25. ^ "Playboy CEO on telling the story from a female perspective". Retrieved 13 March 2021.
  26. ^ "About | PLBY Group". Retrieved 13 March 2021.
  27. ^ "IMG Brand and clients". Archived from the original on 30 September 2013. Retrieved 7 October 2013.
  28. ^ "Top 150 Leading Licensors of 2019". 27 November 2019. Retrieved 10 June 2021.
  29. ^ Bain, Marc (12 February 2021). "Playboy has big plans but Wall Street is unimpressed". Quartz. Retrieved 13 March 2021.
  30. ^ "Playboy Enterprises plans to open clubs, cafes and retail stores in India". The Economic Times. 1 November 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
  31. ^ "India to get first Playboy Club in Goa". BBC News. 1 November 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
  32. ^ Hunwick, Robert Foyle. "Playboy Is Ditching the Sex and Betting on China". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 19 March 2021.
  33. ^ a b "Playboy Expands Licensing Presence in China". PR Newswire (Press release). Los Angeles: Playboy Enterprises. 6 May 2015. Retrieved 19 March 2021.
  34. ^ "China officials halt Playboy club". 9 December 2004. Retrieved 19 March 2021.
  35. ^ "Playboy Club - Club, Shanghai | SmartShanghai". Retrieved 19 March 2021.
  36. ^ "Playboy Expands Direct-to-Consumer and Retail Store Reach with Deal to Acquire Leading Sexual Wellness Omni-Channel Retailer". PLBY Group.
  37. ^ Franklin, Joshua (1 February 2021). "Playboy agrees to buy sexual wellness chain Lovers". Reuters. Retrieved 10 June 2021.

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