Tampa Bay Times sells off Highlands Today, acquired during Tampa Tribune purchase

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

The owners of Sun Coast Media Group have acquired Highlands Today. The newspaper group, which is owned by the Dunn-Rankin Family, will assume responsibility for all Highlands Today operations in a gradual transition that will ensure readers experience no service interruptions, according to a news release distributed by the Tampa Bay Times.

The Times assumed ownership of Highlands Today in May when it purchased the Tampa Tribune. The Times sells about 9,000 newspapers in Highlands County.

“Highlands Today is a much better geographic fit for Sun Coast Media Group than it is for the Times Company,” said Paul Tash, chairman and chief executive of the Times. “We have high regard for the Dunn-Rankins’ commitment to local journalism and know that Highlands Todayis in good hands.”

The Times focuses its coverage on a four-county region in the bay area that includes Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco and Hernando counties. After a 30-day transition period, the Times will no longer circulate in Highlands County.

“We are excited to welcome Highlands Today to our small, family-owned community newspaper group,” said David Dunn-Rankin, president of Sun Coast Media Group. “Highlands is the kind of Florida community we love – great values and traditions mixed with pride. We’ve long wanted to have Highlands Today to join our Highland News, Sun and Lake Placid papers already in Highlands.”