Under one roof and ready to expand

by Lou Smyrlis

Every year at this time I take this space to comment on the developments and trends I believe will shape our industry in the years ahead.

This year I need to take a more inward-focused approach and share with you the changes that will reshape the publications I head as publisher and editorial director, Truck News, Truck West and Motortruck Fleet Executive. You see, 2015 proved to be a momentous year for us. After almost 30 years of intense competition with our rivals Today’s Trucking, Transport Routier and Truck and Trailer, owned by Newcom Business Media, we all came under one roof at the start of this year. Newcom purchased about a third of the assets of our former owners, Business Information Group, with my trucking group being the largest part. The bold move created the Newcom Trucking Group, the largest and most diverse publishing group dedicated to Canada’s trucking industry and the largest and most experienced editorial team.

Since the announcement we’ve devoted most of our time to fine-tuning back-office operations. With the coming of the new year, however, expect to see more visible, more exciting changes.

Truck News and Truck West will continue as the newspapers to the industry but we’ve added a full-time editor to Truck West as we build our presence in the West. Those of you interested in used trucks and trailers must check out our new Marketplace section, which is now linked with the TruckandTrailer.ca Web site and search engine.

One of the most significant changes will be our focus on a segment of the Canadian trucking market we felt has traditionally been underserved: truck fleet maintenance. Maintenance managers and service professionals are the backbone of every successful fleet. They play an integral part in vehicle and equipment decisions because no one knows more about vehicle and equipment spec’s and capabilities and how to keep vehicles on the road and generating revenue.

We believe they deserve a magazine of their own. And that’s what we will give them next spring as we launch Motortruck Fleet Maintenance, the only Canadian trucking magazine exclusively serving the information needs of maintenance managers and service professionals.

But we’re not stopping there.

We are also introducing a premier educational and networking event dedicated exclusively to truck fleet maintenance. In conjunction with PIT Group, we are bringing together the ATSSA, CTEA, OTA and TMTA to produce the Canadian Fleet Maintenance Summit. The Summit will bring all industry stakeholders – service professionals, manufacturers, researchers and enforcement officials – under one roof to discuss the most pressing maintenance issues and point the way forward. The event takes place April 13, 2016 at the International Centre in Toronto.  And there’s more…the Canadian Fleet Maintenance Summit is being held one day before, and at the same place, as the crown jewel of the Newcom Trucking Group: Truck World, the trucking industry’s largest show. Your pass to CFMS gets you into Truck World too.

I simply don’t have room on this page to speak to all the new touchpoints we are building into this industry and the investments in new staff and technologies we are making in the process. But let me say this: Next year will mark my 30th in journalism yet I find myself bursting with the enthusiasm of a rookie when I think of the positive changes ahead.

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