January 16, 2017 Last Updated 2:18 pm

Canadian Business Media Association merger with Magazines Canada completed

This move was announced back in February of last year, so long ago that I had forgotten all about it. But the two sides have completed its merger and last week was able to celebrate its completion.

Best of luck to all involved, but I definitely have a few things to say (as you’d expect).

First, I’ve worked on both the consumer and B2B side of the publishing business and can with certainty that B2B needs to representatives. Sadly, the ABM is long gone here in the US and what remains is a shadow of its former self, as is the industry itself. T

Second, an association merger involving the consumer and B2B sides of the business could be a great thing, as both sides of the business have important things to say to the other. This could work, and not just be a cost savings move.

Finally, whatever happens going forward, one hopes those leading the association understand that the role of any industry organization is to promote the interests of its members, not merely to snow the public into believing that its industry is the greatest things since sliced bread. Here in the States, the association representing magazine publishers seems to believe its job is to convince everyone that the magazine industry is the fastest growing business since personal computers. It’s not, everyone knows it, and saying otherwise has made a laughing stock out of everyone involved.

When I joined McGraw-Hill and began attending construction industry events, some of my best friends, those I loved to hang around with, were the Canadian B2B publishers – one working for Rogers in Toronto, another with his own company based in Vancouver. I miss hanging around with them and talking shop.

Things are tough all over the B2B publishing world, but it is still a great business, with great people in it. So, best of luck to all involved.

Here is the announcement on the merger from Magazines Canada:

Toronto, Ontario – January 12, 2017 – The Canadian Business Media Association (CBMA) has merged with Magazines Canada. CBMA, Canada’s national association for B2B media, voted unanimously to dissolve the association and merge with Magazines Canada, the national trade association for all magazine media. This is a history-making move for the two associations, which will join their impressive legacies, stretching over 40 years for Magazines Canada and 95 years for CBMA.

Under this agreement, all CBMA members will be incorporated into Magazines Canada’s membership. With the addition of former CBMA titles, Magazines Canada’s membership grows to nearly 400 magazines, including 125 business media titles. Magazines Canada has also created a new business media advisory committee to advise its board of directors and ensure that the association effectively serves its B2B magazine members.

“Magazines Canada has been a leading supporter of the B2B industry for many years now, and this merger is a great step for our sector. It strengthens our voice on the national stage and improves our ability to coordinate on projects that will mean a brighter future for business media,” said Scott Jamieson, Vice Chair of Magazines Canada’s board of directors and Director of Content and Engagement for Annex Business Media, a CBMA member.

“This move is exactly what we need to do to align our efforts to build a foundation for a stronger trade press in the future,” said John Kerr, CBMA President and CEO of Kerrwil. “In a digital age, having both the consumer and trade press under one roof just makes a ton of sense and I am personally looking forward to rolling up my sleeves to support the next efforts.”

The merger was unanimously approved at a special meeting of the CBMA’s membership on November 29. As Magazines Canada members, former CBMA titles will be eligible for exclusive member services and discounts on events such as the Business Media Leadership Summit on February 6–7, 2017 and the national MagNet conference on April 25–28, 2017.

The CBMA also brings to Magazines Canada its annual awards program in honour of Kenneth R. Wilson, which recognizes the best of the Canadian business press, including multiplatform content and design. The CBMA Board had previously decided it would not hold the awards in 2017 due to the planned merger with Magazines Canada. Plans for 2018 will be based upon the recommendations of Magazines Canada’s new business media advisory committee.

The CBMA and Magazines Canada will celebrate the merger at a reception today, January 12, 2017 at 6 pm at Le Germain Hotel at 75 Bremner Blvd. in Toronto.

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