Typically in this space for our annual Industry Forecast Issue I review the top news stories from the year just ended. Closing the books on the past 12 months by surveying what transpired across the security landscape is a good way to prepare for and surmise what portends for the New Year. However, this time around there’s a twist. For my money the biggest story, which occurred late in 2013, was the sale of the industry’s leading publication. As you may have guessed, I am referring to Security Sales & Integration!
I am excited to announce that EH Publishing of Framingham, Mass., has purchased SSI and its sister publication, Campus Safety, from Torrance, Calif.-based Bobit Business Media. SSI, which was founded in 1979 as Alarm Installer &Dealer and celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2013, spent 25 years as a Bobit property. Some of you may recall the magazine’s origins, being launched by Bob Bargert out of his Calabasas, Calif., home as a vehicle to truly and fairly represent the voice of alarm dealers and installers (as opposed to vendors). Bargert, who passed away in 1993 at age 68, was elected into the Industry Hall of Fame in 2004.
Bargert’s original vision and continuing legacy, I am thrilled to report, has never been in better hands. EH Publishing, like Bobit Business Media, is an independently owned B-to-B publishing company serving both print and electronic platforms, as well as producing a variety of tradeshows and events. However, the firms’ market expertise and industries served are as dissimilar as the climates in which their headquarters sit.
Bobit primarily focuses on automotive and transportation businesses while EH, which was founded in 1994, covers a variety of technology-related fields. Virtually everything EH touches — including Commercial Integrator for commercial systems integrators, Channel Pro for IT integrators, CE Pro for home systems integrators and Electronic House for consumers — has a security component. The same holds true for EH’s other leading media products and events that include commercial technology (Tech Decisions), worship technology (Worship Facilities Expo), robotics, logistics and pro audio.
Looking at that impressive portfolio, when you take stock of what a natural tie-in and extension of what EH is all about, the absence of a dedicated security brand becomes conspicuous if not glaring. By the same token, that type of progressive, technology-driven and business-savvy environment is ideally suited to SSI’s core principles and mission. That’s why in essence this acquisition is a marriage made in tech media heaven. At the risk of opening an old wound of my new Boston-area colleagues, it’s analogous to the Red Sox selling Babe Ruth to the New York Yankees.
As someone who has poured a lot of blood, sweat and passion into this publication for more than 15 years, I am elated to join forces with such like-minded professionals. In particular, it is gratifying to be reunited with the man who in many ways I view as my industry mentor and also a good friend, Jason Knott. To know him — which many of you do from the decade he spent as editor and publisher of SSI that culminated a couple of years after I came aboard and from his past 13 years guiding CE Pro — is to hold him in the highest regard. I now have the distinct pleasure to work with Jason once again as he takes on the role of SSI’s Editorial Director.
Another key appointment to lead SSI onward and upward is Steve Nesbitt (see this month’s Industry Pulse section). Meanwhile, the publication’s editorial staff including Rodney Bosch and Ashley Willis not only remains intact but is being expanded with EH veteran Arlen Schweiger assuming managing editor duties. Plus there is a whole host of fantastic, friendly, and highly skilled associates supporting and furthering SSI’s cause — especially online where you will see substantial enhancements.
I know everyone at EH is fully committed to SSI being the industry leader. What this means for you, the reader and security professional, is a seamless transition with even bolder, better and more valuable technology and business information to help you reach new plateaus of success. Happy New Year indeed!
Editor-in-Chief Scott Goldfine has spent more than 15 years with Security Sales & Integration. Follow him online via the Under Surveillance blog at securitysales.com/blog.