INFLUENCE Magazine

"INFLUENCE is what a magazine would look like if George Magazine had been about Florida politics ."

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INFLUENCE Magazine is the latest project from Peter Schorsch and Extensive Enterprises Media.

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It's not the kind of project you might expect out of a man whose entire business model has been to disrupt the print media industry, but Extensive Enterprises Media publisher Peter Schorsch is launching a luxury lifestyle magazine this month.

"I've always wanted to do my own guide to the legislative session," he said a few days before lawmakers and lobbyists make their way to Tallahassee, "and make it kind of darkly humorous."

The magazine's target readers are the politicians, the lobbyists, the law firms and the big business leaders who closely watch the political moves that keep the wheels of government moving.

"There are about 3,000 people in this industry in Florida who receive scant coverage," Schorsch said. The industry? Politics and influence.

Every two years, more than $400 million is spent to elect our Legislature and another $424 million is spent to influence them, he said. When you count local elections, this is a $600 million industry annually.

The 134-page debut is a stark contrast to SaintPetersBlog, Schorsch's hard news and opinion blog that has grown during the past few years to cover politics and politicians beyond St. Petersburg.

"I got a bunch of old copies of George Magazine to get a sense of the tone I was looking for," he said of his research process.

The first issue cost him less than $100,000 to produce — a fraction of the upfront cost some luxury magazines incur as they get off the ground. Schorsch said he has been able to use staff writers to produce content. He expects the next few issues to cost more as he ramps up photography and distribution. -- Chris Wilkerson, Tampa Bay Business Journal