Thursday, June 10, 2010

Reed Construction Data and Hanley Wood form new alliance to deliver product directories

With the construction trade publications sold off, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Reed Elsevier, Reed Construction Data (RCD) has announced that it has entered into an alliance with former arch-rival Hanley Wood to create and deliver enhanced product directories.

“With this agreement we’re embracing an integrated strategy that will leverage core information assets of our respective entities to benefit a broad array of construction industry professionals,” said Reed Construction Data CEO Iain Melville in a statement.
The new alliance will take content from RCD's SmartBuilding Index, a construction product directory, and merge it with information from Hanley Wood.

This new alliance appears to push to the side the new companies formed by Reed's massive divestiture -- specifically, the MB Media which now owns the Building Design+Construction, Construction Bulletin, Construction Equipment, Professional Builder, Professional Remodeler and Spec Check titles, and new company formed by Steve Rourke and Jim Langhenry who acquired Consulting-Specifying Engineer.

Cahners Business Information acquired Atlanta-based CMD Group for $299.5 million in 2000. Meanwhile, the construction group was headquartered in Des Plaines, IL (later Oak Brook) and the two groups never effectively interacted or took advantage of their combined capabilities. At the time, many of Cahners (later RBI) construction titles were number on in their field. The regional construction magazines that came along with the deal -- magazines such as California Builder & Engineer, Construction, Dixie Contractor, New England Construction and Pacific Builder & Engineer -- were likewise kept separate for the most part, with on-and-off efforts to better integrate them into the new company.

(Disclosure: I worked for McGraw-Hill's Construction Information Group and later was publisher of SGC's Roads & Bridges, all competitors of Cahners/RBI's construction group. Later I worked at RBI, but not in the construction groups.)