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August 2, 2017

I recently had the honor of representing Pet Age as the first media brand to attend a Petland annual meeting. Founded in 1967 by Ed Kunzelman, the pet store franchise is not only celebrating 50 years in the industry, it’s also enjoying the news that Entrepreneur magazine named Petland the number 32-ranked franchise in the world. Th e operation has full-service retail pet centers across the U.S. and Canada, as well as in Mexico, Japan, China, South Africa, Brazil and El Salvador.

What caught my attention throughout the seminars and trade show, which included Segrest Farms, Zoo Med Laboratories and Coastal Pet Products, was the overall atmosphere that seemed more appropriate for a family reunion than a business conference. Serious topics were discussed, of course, on subjects that ranged from SEO and social media strategies to in-store marketing and sales tracking. However, this was a celebration of its founder and the impact he’s had on Petland and the industry as a whole.

Kunzelman has never been shy about his passion for fishkeeping, and he founded Aquarium Adventure in 1995. The aquatic side of the industry has always held a place in my heart, as well, which is why I’m proud of the content that is jammed between the covers of our August issue.

In addition to our superior, wideranging coverage that we deliver on all animal categories, this issue features a Focus On spread devoted to products best described as “aquatic essentials.” There’s also a What’s In Store profile that spotlights Aquarium Zen, which owner Steve Waldron proudly admits is greatly infl uenced by the late master aquascaper Takashi Amano. We also offer a special preview of this year’s Marine Aquarium Conference of North America
(MACNA), which is the oldest of its kind in the country.

I am pleased to announce that we will be attending MACNA, which takes place August 25 to 27 in New Orleans. If you can make the trip, we hope to see you in the Big Easy. Until then, read on. There’s plenty of entertaining and business-building information that awaits you. Enjoy!

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