The publication is the brainchild of Derrick Spies, who has over 12 years experience in print media industry in the Eastern Cape, having worked for titles such as The Herald, Die Burger
and Daily Dispatch
. "The aim of the publication is to provide our readers with quality local, national and international content, free of charge, delivered to their doorstep," says Spies.
Published by DSC Media, a media consultancy established by Spies in 2009, he says the publication is modelled on international free papers, which provide informative news, entertainment and sports coverage, at no cost to the reader. "If you look at global trends, paid-for publications are seeing a dramatic decline in circulation, while free publications are growing," he says.
"This is not just another community newspaper, carrying the standard soft news stories to fill the spaces where advertising cannot be sold," says Spies. "Rather the focus is on providing a relevant, quality news product that will stand up to the existing paid-for publications currently in the market."
Spies says to this end, editorial is king, with the publication's advertising loading between 40 and 45%, much lower than existing free publications. "Despite this, we are able to offer exceptionally good rates when compared to our competitors," he says. He adds that the print publication will carry more in-depth local stories, entertainment and sport, as well as a wrap of the previous week's top international news, while up-to-date breaking news will be carried online via the publication's strong web presence, www.metronewspaper.co.za
, which has already launched and is updated daily Monday through to Friday.
"To this end, Metro
has entered into an initial year-long contract with the South African Press Association, which give us access to top national and international news, sport and entertainment coverage, while a team of freelance writers provide us with unique local news," he says.
The publication will be printed by Paarl Coldset in Port Elizabeth and the distribution handled by a professional distribution company. Although initially fortnightly, distributed every first and third Monday of the month, the aim is to grow the publication into a weekly by year-end, says Spies, who also wants to see circulation grow to 50 000 by the end of 2013.
For more information on the publication, contact Derrick Spies on 083 304 5810 or firstname.lastname@example.org
. Advertising enquiries can be directed to email@example.com