OK, I admit it: any publisher that meets with me to tell me about investment in their titles has pretty much already won me over. If they can show me a clear vision of why engineers will want to read their publications, I’m going to be really impressed. So it was great to hear that IML – who at one time had earned a reputation for cutting costs whenever possible – is spending serious money to create publications that engineers will want to read.

The February issue will relaunch EPD as Electronic Product Design and Test (EPDT), positioning it as the only UK title that covers the whole product development cycle. The design, paper and print quality of the magazine is beautiful, and the focus on long-form feature articles will create a publication that engineers want to read, whilst the new email newsletters and websites will provide up-to-date news and product information. The email newsletter will even have more subscribers – 29K people will be receiving EPDT’s newsletter.

But it’s the commitment to the brand that’s impressive: there is real commitment to make EPDT a brand that engineers value, whether in print or online, and it’s the quality of the print title that is going to be the primary way of establishing that perception. But with advertisers moving budgets from print to online, I wanted to know whether Neil Whitaker, publishing director of EPDT thought it was realistic that he could make money from print every month. “It’s all about the brand as a whole making money,” replied Neil, explaining that if the print is supporting revenue online then he would be happy. And I’m sure that many of the readers will also be happy to hear this level of commitment to delivering the media they want.

IML is in the process of relaunching and reorganising its other titles, and will be merging Electrical Products into Panel Building (which will relaunch as Panel Building & System Integration) and Hazardous Area International with HazardEx, allowing them to move the print editions to a monthly frequency. With other publishers giving up on print, it’s nice to see that someone can take a holistic view of the whole publication brand, and have the guts to invest in it. I’m looking forward to seeing the new EPDT website go live, and the new print title land on my desk in February!