Crain Communications Inc. and Plastics News have acquired two European plastics publications and their related portfolio of more than a dozen industry events from publicly held Emap Communications Ltd. in London.
Terms were not disclosed.
The cash transaction, announced to the London Stock Exchange July 27, greatly expands Plastics News' footprint in the global plastics industry.
Emap's polymer-related properties, headquartered in Croydon, England, include two publications - Plastics & Rubber Weekly and the monthly European Plastics News - as well as the Plastics Design & Moulding exhibition, about a dozen European-based conferences, and an annual industry awards event in the United Kingdom. Publishing and events director Andrew Beevers will transfer to Crain with the business, and will head up a team of 18 people in Croydon, south of London. Crain also will retain the existing editorial and sales staffs.
``This acquisition greatly extends the Plastics News brand into a key region where we had been underrepresented,'' said Crain Vice President and PN publisher Tony Eagan. ``Editorially, it means the readers of PN, PRW and EPN will gain access to even better global coverage via an expanded network of experienced reporters and correspondents. Commercially, it offers our advertisers and customers the opportunity for combination packages that will help them deliver their message to plastics processors from Shanghai to Prague to Chicago.''
In announcing the transaction, Crain Communications Chairman Keith Crain said, ``We are delighted about the opportunity this acquisition brings to deepen our coverage of this global market.''
With the acquisition, Crain has promoted Eagan to group publisher, responsible for overseeing PN, PRW and EPN. Eagan joined Plastics News in February 1989 as Philadelphia-based eastern regional sales manager. He subsequently moved to Akron and became publisher in October 1993.
The deal also marries two staffs with significant industry experience. Beevers and the top three editorial staffers have worked a combined 60-plus years with the Emap publications, while several Plastics News staffers have been with the publication since its March 1989 launch.
``Being part of Crain Communications not only gives us unrivaled editorial strength across the globe,'' Beevers said, ``but it also opens up exciting opportunities to grow our conference business beyond Europe and expand our online business into new areas.''
Crain will maintain its existing office in central London, home to European Rubber Journal, Urethanes Technology International and Business Insurance Europe. Crain also jointly owns and produces the international Utech polyurethanes conference and exhibition from its London office.
Emap's polymer business is profitable and has been growing. The 11,800-circulation PRW, now edited by David Eldridge, has been serving the U.K. plastics industry since 1964 and includes an active PRW.com Web site.
Emap acquired the English-language European Plastics News about 15 years ago. Started in 1974, EPN is the only pan-European magazine serving the entire plastics manufacturing sector, including the growing industry in central and Eastern Europe. It circulates to 13,800 subscribers in 20 countries. EPN editor Chris Smith, a 20-year Emap veteran, also serves as conference manager, organizing specialized business and technical conferences across Europe each year.
Emap launched the PDM show in 2005 as a three-day exhibition and conference in Telford, England, targeting U.K. designers, specifiers and manufacturers of plastics molded products. Currently on an 18-month cycle, the next PDM is scheduled for April 2008. Beevers expects the next show to be larger than the previous, 45,000-square-foot event that drew more than 220 exhibitors and nearly 3,000 visitors.
The group's annual, black-tie Plastics Industry Awards in London, launched in 2001, recognize the achievements of the U.K. plastics industry.
Akron-based Plastics News, which began publishing as a weekly newspaper in March 1989, already is active globally via its 11-year-old Web site PlasticsNews .com, and in Asia via its bilingual (Chinese and English) PN China eWeekly e-mail newsletter and Web site. PN also has several events - its Plastics Encounter regional U.S. trade shows and various conferences. Also complementing PRW is Akron-based PN sister publication, Rubber & Plastics News, a 36-year-old fortnightly newspaper that mostly covers the tire and rubber product industries.