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Trader Publishing Co., the nation’s largest publisher of classified advertising magazines, has acquired RV America.com and Wheelers RV Resort & Campground Guide from Tempe, Ariz.-based Web Site Management Inc.
The RV America.com acquisition enables Norfolk, Va.-based Trader Publishing to increase its web hosting and management services for dealers across the country, said Tim Custer, general manager of RV America Web Services, a division of Trader Electronic Media that is now utilizing the RV America brand name.
“RV America.com is an acquisition we made because one of the focuses for our company is to get more into the web services business,” Custer said.
Trader was previously hosting websites for about 100 RV dealers across the country. But with the RV America.com acquisition that number has now grown to about 250 dealers, he said.
The buy extends Trader Publishing’s expansion mode, having recently acquired boats.com and yachtworld.com. Perhaps best known for its local Auto Trader, Boat Trader and RV Trader publications, Trader Publishing operates over 700 print magazines and 35 websites.
Custer said there would be no disruption in operations or changes in service to RV America.com customers. However, RV America.com’s technical operations will be relocated from Phoenix to Virginia Beach, Va.
Web Site Management Inc., founded by CEO Dan Holt and President Don Magary, launched RV America in 1995. In May, Web Site Management acquired the rights to Wheelers RV Resort & Campground Guide from Print Media Services Ltd. of Elk Grove Village, Ill.
But while Trader Publishing now owns the publishing rights for the Wheelers directory, Custer’s company is licensing those rights back to Magary so that he can move ahead with his plans to produce a CD version of the Wheelers directory for 2006.
While Web Site Management employees were not retained as part of the acquisition, both Magary and Holt will provide consulting services to Trader Publishing, Custer said.
In a separate transaction, meanwhile, Web Site Management acquired RV News from Holt, who plans to retire, Magary reports.