It was announced today (23 January 2020) that Pest has a new owner, Lewis Business Media (LBM). LBM is an independent, specialist business to business publisher. Pest founders, Frances McKim and Helen Riby say the move has secured an exciting, long-term future for Pest.
Lewis Business Media (LBM) was formed in February 2012 by the Lewis family. Based in Uckfield in East Sussex, the company continues to be family-owned and publishes a range of specialist titles in both print and online media. Now employing 22 people, the portfolio includes a number of titles in the agriculture sector as well as a number of magazines for niche professions. Pest is therefore a natural fit. The acquisition was completed on 22 January 2020.
Lewis Business Media (LBM), is a family-owned and managed publisher based in Uckfield in East Sussex. As yet, they have little knowledge of the professional public health pest control market – but are keen to learn and get involved. They will be at PPC Live. They do already produce magazines for the farming sector including: Agronomist & Arable Farmer, Pig World, Poultry Business and a magazine called OverTheCounter which is aimed at those who work in country stores.
Helen Riby comments: “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.”
No moonlight flit!
But, as Frances McKim explains: “Pest control won’t be getting rid of us that easily! Rest assured we are not doing a moonlight flit, never to be seen again. We will still be involved making sure things get handed over smoothly and providing editorial content – although obviously, over the longer term, our contributions will reduce.
She continues: “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.”
Simon Lewis, LBM managing director says: “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!”
Enhanced digital offering
Simon continues: “We plan to retain all that is great about the print magazine delivering news, analysis, technical advice and business features, and we will be looking to enhance the digital offering. The new editor will be Simon King who certainly has some big shoes to fill! Simon is 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 so they, of course, sell pest control too – so there is a natural cross over. Advertisers will be looked after by the new commercial team lead by Emma Sharp, sales director.
“The new Pest team will all be at PPC Live in Harrogate on 11 March. We look forward to meeting readers and advertisers alike!” concludes Simon.
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.
Eleven years and counting: Issue 1 February 2009…
…to Issue 66 published in December 2019