THE McIvor Times has a new owner – from today.
McPherson Media Group has sold the masthead to Nathan Quilty, a Heathcote local and founder of Community Deals, which has been running in town since 2016.
Nathan said his multi-platform publication started small – just eight pages. Since then it has grown steadily and is now routinely producing 20 pages or more each issue.
On top of that the launch of its digital platform in 2018 has given Heathcote and district 24/7 access to the masthead.
“I would like to thank MMG for its custodianship of the McIvor Times for the past 15 years and congratulate them for providing it with the support to get through some very tough times,” Nathan added.
“With the innovative and popular Community Deals platform and readership base, it had become apparent to me, and many others in town, that we could create something special with the 157-year-old McIvor Times and its loyal readership and clientele,” he said.
“The McIvor Times will now incorporate the many features and innovations Community Deals has been delivering to the community.
“It (Community Deals) will continue to be published on a fortnightly basis, its focus will be to still provide a free publication and assist all local community groups, not-for-profit and events as a ‘digital noticeboard.”
Nathan said in these unprecedented days, which all of Australia is going through, along with the rest of the world, he believed there was a vital role for local, regional media to play.
He said now, more than ever, the Community Deals slogan ‘think local, shop local’ has become central to the future of small towns such as Heathcote if they are to remain viable for whenever the COVID-19 crisis ends.
“In these times of uncertainty, we must innovate, we must adapt to the current climate and come out the other end as unscathed as is practically possible,” Nathan said.
“To do this we need your support as much as we are looking forward to supporting you,” he said.
“Pick up a copy on a Wednesday from many local businesses, or for those self-isolating; ensure you subscribe online and stay in touch with everything local.
“I look forward to helping the community, to connecting with readers and clientele and once COVID-19 has passed, the door will reopen at 170 High Street.”