Regardless of what segment of the marine industry you call home,companies simply can’t expect to meet the challenges of today with yesterday’s tools and expect to be in business tomorrow. The same holds true in the publishing world. And that’s why we at Boating Industry magazine are so thrilled about a recent change in our own corporate alignment, and perhaps more specifically, the additional resources that come along with it.
But before I get ahead of myself, a brief history: Ventura, Calif.-based Affinity Group Inc., purchased Ehlert Publishing Group 11 years ago. In 2002, Ehlert purchased Boating Industry magazine, and shortly thereafter Trailer Boats, Bass & Walleye Boats and eventually Powerboat magazine joined the arsenal of boating titles and events.
Like any corporate acquisition, it has admittedly taken us a great deal of due diligence and time to align our assets in a way that makes the most sense and greatest impact for our large team of employees internally, and of course externally to our vast audiences and business partners on both the trade and consumer sides of the business.
Which brings us to today. Recently, our parent company, Affinity Group, Inc., announced a new corporate structure, new company name and a new logo. As part of this process, our boating magazines will now be part of a division called Affinity Media, and our consumer boating shows will be a part of a division called Affinity Events. Although our name has changed, our traits and values remain firmly intact. In fact, this evolution makes us an even stronger business partner in helping you reach your goals.
Now, as one strong, focused company we can reach boating consumers like no other company in the nation. The combined portfolio of media solutions — encompassing dozens of publications, Web sites, events and clubs — has resulted in a consumer database of 6 million outdoor recreation enthusiasts. This truly makes us the central information resource and point of contact to consumers across North America who enjoy the boating lifestyle.
The companywide vision for Affinity is simple: Strive to be America’s champion for fun, freedom and adventure of recreation in motion. In fact, our new corporate tagline, “Recreation in Motion,” best portrays the image that we diligently strive for — a positive, enthusiastic force for people who enjoy their free time aboard a boat, personal watercraft, RV, snowmobile, motorcycle or ATV.
For Boating Industry, this is a particularly exciting time. When the magazine published its inaugural issue back in 1929 — yes, it has been around that long — I doubt that publisher James W. Peaslee could, in his wildest imagination, dream of a day that saw his then-fledgling title become such an integral part of a much larger organization…one that is a powerful force not only in the boating realm, but also in the RV and powersports markets.
Ironically, in his inaugural column in 1929, Peaslee wrote: “Our job has just begun, for we have charted a long course for our craft — a course with no end in sight — no limit to its possibilities.” I couldn’t have said it better.
Just a few months ago, our editorial team used this space to share with you — our loyal readers — our vision for what Boating Industry strives to be in print, online and in person: Your trusted source for proven solutions that deliver you real results. The additional resources afforded us by this new corporate structure will only help us to better deliver on that vision.