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Editor's Notebook

Putting Change to Good Use

New faces from different places, moving forward with new opportunities – and you will benefit

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Change is good, we are told. Change brings opportunity. And so it is in our little corner of the world, where change has come at a cosmic rate.

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Change is never easy, as you know, but we see much opportunity in our future thanks to the addition of new faces and some new initiatives. More on the latter later.

Back in mid-April, David Moniz, publisher of both Tire Review and sister publication Fleet Equipment, left Babcox Media for his own new opportunity. That gave us the opportunity to strengthen our leadership with the hiring of two new publishers.

Randy Loeser has joined as the new publisher of Tire Review. Loeser comes to us from LINQ2 Communications in Cleveland, where he served as vice president of sales and operations since 2010. He also has worked for several national business-to-business publishers in a variety of roles, including business development, marketing and Internet products management.

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Randy brings a lot of energy and ideas, and we’re excited about our own future opportunities with him at the helm. He can be reached at [email protected]­babcox.com or 330-670-1234 ext. 285.

Across the hall, Dean Martin has been named publisher of Fleet Equipment. Many of you already know Dean; for the past 17 years, he has been a regional sales manager and associate publisher with Babcox Media. Previously, he was an executive with another business-to-business publisher.

Dean can be reached at [email protected]­babcox.com or at 330-670-1234, ext. 225.

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Denise Koeth, our managing editor and the person who really makes the engine run around here, also is experiencing some changes in her life. She and her husband, Ritch, anticipate the birth of their first child in August, and it is an exciting and anxious time for them both.

As she will return after maternity leave, Denise’s change gave us the opportunity to add more talent to the mix. Kristen Criswell has joined the Tire Review team as associate editor. A graduate of the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University, Kristen has served as a digital media specialist and publicist at two Air Force bases – her husband is an Air Force pilot – and started her career with a newspaper in Toledo, Ohio.

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Kristen can be reached at [email protected]­babcox.com, or at 330-670-1234, ext. 273.

Anyone who runs a business – like you – knows that each day brings change. Running a business, after all, is all about managing change. You either manage it, or it manages you.

We prefer to put our changes to good use.

Personally, I am very excited going forward. We had a strong team prior to all of these changes. Once the dust settled, combined with our roster of contributing writers and other resources, Tire Review is stronger than ever.

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We won’t waste that opportunity. As I mentioned, there are other changes in the works, some fantastic new opportunities for our readers and business partners alike in all-new realms and platforms. Stay tuned, as they say.

For now, please make welcome for our new team members and the latest additions to the tire industry.

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Speaking of change, many details are still to be worked out on Apollo Tyre’s proposed purchased of Cooper Tire & Rubber Co., so I don’t want to get too far ahead of anything. Apollo’s $35 per share offer has been accepted by the Cooper board, and shareholders will respond as they see fit – though there appears to be no real barriers.

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How the enlarged Apollo Tyre will look and act following the deal is still to be determined – and not by analysts and lawyers and pundits like me.

But as I stated in my blog just after the deal was announced, the significance of this deal cannot be overstated. This is big. Truly a game-changer.

Many expected a Chinese firm would make such a bold move – and that may yet come – but Apollo is no Third World wanna-be. Throughout the last decade, Apollo has positioned itself for this moment. It modernized significantly. It expanded its horizons beyond India, taking Dunlop in Southern Africa and troubled Vredestein in Europe. It changed its look and feel, and reshaped itself as a major player.

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And now it’s poised to be a Top 10 global tire company.

Some 25 years ago, we were all stunned when Bridgestone stepped up to buy the staggering and struggling Firestone Tire & Rubber Co. Analysts pooh-poohed that deal. So did dealers and others. And you see how that turned out.

Will Apollo-Cooper end that way? Only time will tell. Either way, it’s still a very big deal.  

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