The Tampa Bay Times and the Plant City Observer have created a partnership to publish a weekly newspaper – the Plant City Times & Observer.
The free weekly newspaper, which will debut in August, will offer local news and advertising to its readers in east Hillsborough County. With a circulation of 15,000 copies each week, the paper will be available in racks and through home delivery. The paper will publish as a free-standing paper and as a section of the Tampa Bay Times in the Plant City area.
“This partnership will allow us to give Plant City residents an even more robust weekly newspaper,” said Bruce Faulmann, vice president of sales and marketing at the Tampa Bay Times. “And we couldn’t be more pleased to team up with the local ownership group in Plant City and the Observer Media Group in Sarasota. They have done a great job with the Plant City Observer.
The Times will handle the Times & Observer’s advertising, printing and distribution; the Plant City Observer staff will handle all editorial.
The launch of the new weekly builds on the Tampa Bay Times’ expansion into Plant City last year, when the Times launched a regional edition on Friday. The Plant City Observer also launched a year ago as a weekly.
“This new partnership is going to be great for everyone – our readers, our advertisers, the Plant City community and our two companies,” said Matt Walsh, CEO of Observer Media Group Inc. “Combining our respective strengths will allow us to produce for Plant City the best daily newspaper in Florida and one of the best community weeklies in Florida.”
About the Tampa Bay Times
The Tampa Bay Times is widely considered one of the Top Ten newspapers in America and has won nine Pulitzer Prizes. It is Florida’s largest newspaper, with an average circulation of 402,422 Sunday and 340,260 daily (AAM FAS-FAX March 2013). The Times is produced by the Times Publishing Company, which also publishes TampaBay.com - Tampa Bay's largest local news Web site with 2 million unique visitors each month (Nielsen NetView six-month average for 11/12-4/13). Additionally, the company publishes the free daily tbt*, an edition of the Tampa Bay Times, tb-two*, a free paper written by Tampa Bay area students distributed to students, and the Pulitzer Prize-winning website, PolitiFact.com; and produces special events, specialty publications, and targeted advertising programs.
About the Plant City Observer
The Plant City Observer is owned by Plant City Observer LLC, a partnership of Plant City businessmen Ed Verner, Nate Kilton, Felix Haynes and Sarasota-based Observer Media Group Inc. (OMG). OMG publishes seven free community weekly newspapers, including the Sarasota Observer, Longboat Observer, East County Observer, Ormond Beach Observer, Palm Coast Observer, Pelican Press and Plant City Observer; the weekly, paid-circulation Business Observer, serving the Gulf of Florida; and five affiliated websites. The company’s combined circulation and unique viewership totals more than 150,000 a week. In 2012, the Local Media Association, a newspaper organization of more than 2,200 member newspapers in the U.S. and Canada, named the Sarasota Observer and Longboat Observer “Newspapers of the Year” in their circulation categories and YourObserver.com the No. 1 local news website in North America.