Lewis Business Media has acquired independent magazine Pest, Pest+ enews and its associated website – until recently published by Foxhill Publishing.
Pest founders and Guild members Frances McKim and Helen Riby say the move has secured an exciting, long-term future for the magazine and website for pest management professionals.
Based in Uckfield in East Sussex, family-owned Lewis Business Media publishes a range of specialist titles in both print and online media – including in the agriculture sector.
Pest was launched in November 2008, since when it has established itself as a leading independent source of information for pest professionals, not only in the UK, but around the world.
The acquisition by Lewis Business Media was completed on 22 January 2020.
Helen said: “We are very proud of what we’ve achieved with Pest over the past 11 years, but there is a limit to how much two people can do.
Finding a new owner to take the publication on to its next stage hasn’t been easy. Our most important consideration was to ensure the publication retains its independence.
We are very happy that our search has been fruitful. In Lewis Business Media we have found a small, specialist, independent publisher with all the right skills to nurture our baby.”
Both Helen and Frances will still be attending events, involved making sure things get handed over smoothly and providing editorial content – although their contributions will reduce over the longer term.
Frances said: “Both Helen and I would like to thank all our readers for their encouraging comments and contributions and our advertisers for their commitment and financial support.
“Thanks are also due to our Technical Advisory Board members who have always been very generous with their advice.”
Lewis Business Media managing director Simon Lewis said: “I am very pleased we have completed this latest acquisition and I’m looking forward to getting involved in the pest control industry.
“Frances and Helen have done a great job running the magazine since its inception and I’m delighted they have both agreed to join the Technical Advisory Board and will continue to provide some content – so their expertise will not be lost.”
Simon said Lewis Business Media planned to retain all that is great about the print magazine delivering news, analysis, technical advice and business features – and would be looking to enhance the digital offering.
The new editor will be Simon King, currently the editor of OvertheCounter, the magazine for Suitably Qualified Persons (SQP) in the UK – the professional qualification required to sell certain animal health products.
The majority of SQPs work in country stores and sell pest control products too – so there is a natural cross over. Advertisers will be looked after by the new commercial team, led by sales director Emma Sharp.
The new Pest team will all be at PPC Live in Harrogate on 11 March.
Our photo shows Pest founders Helen Riby, left, and Frances McKim.