Having just celebrated its 40th anniversary a few months ago, Electronic Product News (EPN) is set to close. The magazine will publish its final edition in March. At the same time EDN Europe, the other Reed Business Information electronics title, will leave the publisher as UBM’s license to publish it will be transferred to European Business Press, headquartered in Brussels.
As a former member of the EPN staff (involved in its editorial output from 2001 to 2008), I am understandably saddened by the news – but equally infuriated how such a widely-known magazine, which had previously been highly successful, could befall such a fate. Its original publishing house, PEPCO, was bought up by Reed several years ago, when big corporations were obsessed with such acquisition activity. It then proceeded to mess around with the business model used by EPN and its sister publications, in order to expand profit margins as much as possible.
In the meantime little or no investment was made in developing the magazine’s operations, so that it could keep pace with its competitors as the Internet age took hold. Now, Reed has decided to divest its interest in electronics publishing altogether. All I can say is – what a shame they interfered in the first place, if it hadn’t then electronics’ ‘Big Red Book’ might still be around.