Local News

Business Leader Magazine To Go National

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Dan Davies, publisher of

Business Leader

magazine since he founded it in 1989, has a new partner and plans to take the concept of the magazine nationally along with a series of websites.

"It was always my dream to have a series of Business Leader magazines around the country," Davies told WRAL.com. "As time went by, I found out I did not have the expertise nor the energy nor the resources to make it happen. But I've always looked for a person to make it happen."

The "person" is Eran Salu, a founder and a managing director of SG Capital, an investment bank in Los Angeles. Salu, who has been involved in mergers and acquisitions since 1993, has assumed majority ownership in Business Leader Media that Davies co-owned along with partner Martin Seligson. Seligson has been bought out of the partnership, Davies said. Davies retains a minority ownership interest in the publishing company.

"He's in investor with a vision," Davies said of Salu.

"I wanted to do this," he added. "Being a minority shareholder in the corporation doesn't reduce my equity at all, and this certainly brightens my future."

Launching a new venture is exciting for Davies, who acknowledges on his firm's Web site that he has long been infected by the "entrepreneurial virus".

"I'm loving this," he said. "I wish I were 20 years younger."

Working with Salu, Business Leader has purchased two national magazines (Money 'n Profits, Opportunity World) and related Web sites. By acquiring the magazines from United Communications, Business Leader Media will gain a national presence on newsstands across the country, Davies said.

Business Leader Media will continue to be based in Raleigh, and the company is in the process of hiring several additional personnel, including editors, designers and sales people.

Davies declined to disclose financial details of the moves, but said the overall investment would exceed $1 million.

"Our intention in 2007 is to launch a national version of Business Leader in addition to the local version," Davies said. "The national magazine will focus on leadership and on medium and small businesses. We also will have a whole package of Web sites designed to support that effort."

Davies will continue to oversee day-to-day operations, he added.

Salu, whom Davies said would move to Raleigh from Las Vegas in the near future, had been seeking an opportunity to enter the media business.

"He's been interested in creating a media package that could be a primary source of information for owners of small- and mid-sized businesses," Davies said. "He sees that as an integration of print and the Web."

Business Leader will continue to publish a local version of Business Leader as well as its quarterly The Park Guide plus The Corporate Relo Guide. Various networking events and other programs coordinated by Business Leader will also continue, Davies said.

The company's family of Web sites is being expanded to include TotalBusiness.com, small-business-forum.com, smallbusinessguides.com and bestinbusiness.com. Business Leader acquired those from Total Business Media.

The Business Leader Web site will be remodeled as a national business Web site with previous RTP-area content moving to a locally focused Web site, Davies said. Business Leader owns RaleighDurham.com as well as ResearchTriangle.com.

Salu earned a master's in business from the Wharton School, a law degree from the University of California Berkeley School of Law and an accounting degree from the University of Maryland. Before launching SG Capital, Salu worked at Morgan Stanley as well as Ernst & Young.

Davies moved from the Midwest to Raleigh in 1989, when he launched Business Leader. Before launching his publishing career, Davies worked for Merrill Lynch, Gillette and Six Flags.

The investment by Salu in Business Leader and the ensuing acquisitions were brokered by Enlign Business Brokers in Raleigh.

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