City and Regional Publisher SagaCity Media Acquires Sarasota Magazine
The deal, which includes five titles, marks the Portland, Oregon-based publisher’s entry into the East Coast market.
SagaCity Media, a city and regional publisher based in Portland, Oregon, is set to announce today that it’s acquired the Sarasota magazine brands from Gulfshore Media. Included in the deal are the flagship Sarasota Magazine, Biz (941), SEE Sarasota, Sarasota Health and Venice Magazine.
The 12-year-old SagaCity first launched Portland Monthly in 2003 and has since bought or launched its way across the country. The company also has titles in Seattle, Houston, Aspen, Vail and Park City.
Terms of the deal were not released, but SagaCity will focus on expanding the digital platform for the Sarasota brands. Investments in responsive design, database technology, mobile and social media that the company has already made with its existing brands will be carried over to the Sarastota portfolio, Nicole Vogel, SagaCity’s president, tells Folio:.
The Sarasota deal marks the company’s second sizeable acquisition to date and brings the total title count to 82, says Vogel, which includes a significant number of custom publications.
Vogel declined to offer specifics on deal terms, but says, "We all think it was a fair price for a highly profitable asset and we intend to ratchet up our return on investment by launching significant digital assets by January 2016."
Gulfshore group publisher Kelley Lavin, editorial director Pam Daniel and creative director Gigi Ortwein will remain on board after the deal. Vogel says that the rest of the employees will also stay and more positions will be added to the digital team. "We are also giving raises to about one-third of the staff to bring them to our Sagacity levels," she adds.
Gulfshore Media has been through a couple of acquisitions in the last 11 years. Company founder Dan Denton sold the titles to CurtCo in 2004 and then bought them back six years later.
In 2012, Denton then sold his Gulfshore titles, including Gulfshore Life, Gulfshore Business and annual titles Gulfshore Life at Home and Forever Young, to Hadley Capital-backed Open Sky Media.
Denton then purchased Venice Magazine in mid-2014.