One of the biggest stories in B2B media in 2016 was the creation of EnsembleIQ out of three well-known but disparate trade publishers.
In February of last year, Stagnito Business Information merged with Edgell Communications in a deal backed by private-equity firm RFE Investment Partners. Then, in April, the company expanded again with the acquisition of the Path to Purchase Institute. With the Path to Purchase acquisition, that company’s founder and CEO, Peter Hoyt, was named CEO of the combined company.
But last month, after just more than a year on the job, Hoyt left the company in a move initiated by the board of directors. A search is on now for a new CEO, and Alan Glass, the executive chairman of the company, said a replacement is expected by year’s end.
“When we appointed Peter as CEO of the combined companies, we recognized that Peter’s tenure in this role would not be long-term,” Glass tells Folio:. “This was something that matched up with Peter’s own personal goals and desires after the sale of his company. We asked Peter to take this on and he willingly did so and did a nice job. He remains on the company’s board of directors and will help in leading our strategic way forward.”
For his part, Hoyt said Glass has always been the brains behind the creation of EnsembleIQ.
“He has had a long, very successful career as a B2B publishing executive,” Hoyt said. “He has done this sort of thing before. What he accomplished with CFO magazine and surrounding offerings that they developed is nothing short of astounding.”
In the ’90s, Glass was a senior executive with Primedia, which at that time was a nearly-$2 billion magazine-publishing behemoth. In 2000, Glass formed Commonwealth Business Media after leading a management buyout of the company from Primedia. That was also done with RFE, the PE firm that owns Ensemble IQ.
In 2006, Commonwealth was acquired by United Business Media, and Glass continued in his role there until the end of 2008.
The aggregation of Edgell, Stagnito and Path to Purchase (and later the addition of the Rogers Communications brands that focus on retail and consumer packaged goods in Canada) created a company of substantial scale, with more than 40 brands in the served markets. It also marked the end (for now) of two storied B2B names on independent companies — names that date back decades: Edgell and Stagnito. Both Bob Edgell and Harry Stagnito were significant players in B2B media, and several of their children carried on the family names in business media.
Going forward, Glass tells Folio:, the plan is to continue to execute on its mission to serve the retail and consumer package markets “with industry leading content, events and research that are viewed as indispensable to our customers everyday needs, primarily in North America.”
“We have a ‘customer first’ strategy whereby we can offer a multiple number of information solutions across channels and in a variety of formats,” Glass added. “We have a great platform in place, a very strong management team, very supportive shareholders and an active M&A program in place.”