Details About The OFA-ANLA Joint Venture

OFA ANLA merger

Why are ANLA and OFA creating this joint venture?
The industry is facing significant opportunities and challenges that require its national trade associations to respond as never before. In meeting those challenges, the national associations have a choice: to compete against each other or join together. OFA and ANLA have decided to join forces. Therefore, we are forming a joint venture that involves sharing resources, including appropriate staff, to expand the capacity of the organizations to better support our members and the industry.

How does the joint venture benefit OFA and ANLA members?
ANLA and OFA members will have access to the best of both of our organizations. OFA is the horticulture industry leader in technical and business development education, industry marketing and conducting a major trade show with international ties. ANLA is the industry leader in representing the industry before government, interpreting major industry trends and providing owner/senior management education.

What is the timing of the joint venture?
Working together on industry education and advocacy will begin with the 2012 activity year.

What does a joint venture in providing education mean?
Together, we are doing a thorough review of our current education programs. Where programs are duplicative or competing, changes will be made. Some programs may be combined and others reformatted. The goal is to work together to provide meaningful, cost‐effective education, both in person and online.

What does a joint venture in industry advocacy mean?
A larger grassroots network of constituents—people who vote—has a profound effect on government officials. With OFA and ANLA joining forces, the industry’s capacity to influence the federal legislative and regulatory process grows significantly. Our response will be more consistent and timely. Building stronger relationships with government decision‐makers is made easier and done more cost‐effectively with more association members involved. Working together, we can create a momentum that isn’t
achievable by working independently.

What about differences between the types of businesses that the associations serve?
OFA and ANLA already independently serve greenhouses, nurseries, landscape professionals, garden centers, interior plantscapers, breeders, florists, product suppliers, students, educators, etc., and we will
continue to do so.

What does “… sharing resources, including staff …” mean?
Both of our associations benefit from the experience and skills of long‐tenured professional staff. The joint venture is about building the associations’ capacities to do more with the experienced resources
we have. Some staff responsibilities will likely be adjusted as programs in the joint venture areas change. However, the associations’ leadership and membership structures, as well as financing, will remain separate. In addition, the associations’ offices in Columbus, Ohio, and Washington, DC, will remain in full operation.

Could this joint venture eventually lead to a merger?
It will not be a merger; but in several years, if both organizations see the joint venture as a value to our members and they can benefit from further collaboration to better serve them and the industry, it is our intention to form a new, single premier horticulture organization serving North America.

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