February 9, 2016 Last Updated 1:59 pm

B2B publisher BNP launches new ENR and ArchRecord apps under their own developer account

Both new apps are identical to the replica edition apps that remain inside the App Store under the McGraw-Hill Financial developer account name

The B2B magazine publisher BNP has recently released new digital edition apps for titles they picked up from McGraw-Hill Financial: Engineering News-Record and Aarchitectural Record.

ENR-ArchRecordThe new app are identical to the old ones, only they are slightly renamed and appear under their own developer account inside the Apple App Store.

McGraw-Hill was pretty late to launch digital edition apps, only releasing apps for these titles in February of 2014.

When TNM first looked at the apps I described them as enhanced replicas. Built using the Mag+ digital publishing platform, the digital editions gave readers a PDF replica, but with a few links and multimedia thrown in. I suppose a replica edition is what would have been expected – after all, ENR is a weekly publication – but it was disappointing, nonetheless.

When I worked at McGraw-Hill in the early to mid-nineties, the company was very much interested in the prospects of digital publishing, and invested heavily in Macs and new desktop publishing software. The president and CEO of the company, Terry McGraw, also appeared to be very curious about the growing worldwide web.

But McGraw-Hill was a changing company, and its interest in magazines was fading. By 2009 it had sold Business Week to Bloomberg, and in 2014 sold off its construction group to the private equity company Symphony Technology Group. The PE was most interested in the data side of the business, not its legacy magazine titles Engineering News-Record and ArchRecord.

Symphony Technology Group held on to the magazines for only a short while, selling the titles to Troy, Michigan-based BNP Media last year.

It is hard to overstate just how respected those magazines were at one time. For a time, when ArchRecord had the contract with the American Institute of Architects, the two magazines were among the most important, and profitable B2B magazines in the business. But the AIA contract went to Hanley Wood in 2010, putting ArchRecord’s future in peril, while ENR has seen its paid circulation fall a third from a decade ago, according to the magazine’s last AAM publisher’s statement.

Now there two replica apps sit inside the Apple App Store right next to similar apps that still appear under the McGraw-Financial name. These will likely be pulled at some point, but for now they are still receiving updates in order to keep them working.

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