July 2, 2010, Simcoe, Ont. - Annex Publishing & Printing Inc. has acquired the popular
firefighting website and magazine, Firehall.com, to bolster its fleet of fire
industry magazines, websites and other digital offerings.
Annex has published Fire Fighting
in Canada, which provides news, coverage and
analysis of key issues facing fire management, since 1957, and Canadian
Firefighter and EMS Quarterly, which focuses primarily on firefighters and
training issues, since 1977.
Firehall.com is a 12-year-old website
providing an excellent forum for exchange among firefighters and others
involved in the fire industry, and it boasts impressive traffic numbers. The
site averaged more than 100,000 visitors a month in the first three months of
2010. Some 35,000 to 45,000 of these visitors are "unique visitors." In January
alone, the site had 6.9 million hits.
Annex group publisher Martin McAnulty
describes Firehall.com as "a good brand with good traffic – a good fit for our
group." He adds that it will meld particularly well with Canadian Firefighter
and EMS Quarterly, which serves a rank-and-file
audience of firefighters. He expects that the acquisition will speed Fire
Fighting in Canada and Canadian
Firefighter and EMS Quarterly toward
their goals of being the digital leaders in the firefighting industry. McAnulty
does not expect to make any significant changes to the current mix of content
and features on the Firehall.com site, other than adding some of the more
in-depth content from Canadian Firefighter and EMS Quarterly.
Cris Leonard, CEO of Firehall Online Inc., says the
acquisition "is a win-win benefit for both parties. It will allow Annex to take
the website and magazine to a new level, while complementing their current
offerings. For our company, soon to be known as Wingate Products Corporation,
we will now be able to apply more focus on our product lines, which are
available to emergency service departments through our online stores,
Firehallstore.com and Wpc.ca."
With this acquisition, Annex
Publishing becomes a one-stop shop for up-to-the-minute news, key current
industry NFPA standards information and training materials. The Annex Bookstore
sells training manuals, books, videos and other educational materials specific
to the fire industry. Its offerings include Fireground Strategies, Hazardous Materials Incidents, Structure Protection in the I-Zone and some 50 other titles.
Publishing & Printing is one of Canada's largest business-to-business
publishing companies, with more than 26 titles and 25 active websites. The
privately held company is based in Simcoe, Ont., and runs a modern printing and