First of all hello , I'm relatively new to this forum.
I'm a student with some experience in web design and i'm currently in the process of setting up a business venture that will include primarily deals (exclusive offers + some affiliate links) and jobs sections, along with music, film and sport articles aimed at a specific target audience.
Ideally I would like to create the website myself from scratch and refine some skills along the way but i'm finding myself increasingly bogged down with fundraising, promotion and the day-to-day stresses of a start-up, so with some reluctance me and my business partner decided to get a man/men in.
I've approached several professional designers about having a bespoke system made and i'm getting offers of about £15k+/$24k+, which is more than I initially thought but not a complete shock as it's quite a comprehensive system we're looking for, luckily we have raised a fair bit in fundraising but we need to put as much as we can into promotion to really get our vision off the ground.
Now what i'm interested in is advice as to whether you think I could spend less money on a CMS + Plugins + Template's combination without sacrificing too much in terms of functionality, professionalism and credibility - that would be okay until we can afford a tailor-made option without breaking the bank. We wouldn't need a job system and we are having that done separately, but to be more specific we would need a members-system, deals/affiliate page as well as blog style sections for the article's (with featured section) and a main page that contain widgets such as hot 20 deals, top news, articles + videos etc.
This website is a close example of what we are trying to acheive.
Would using a CMS be a viable option? I have done some research, I've heard wordpress decribed as "state-of-the-art" but my first impressions are that is seems a bit "too bloggy". I've also heard Joomla! and Drupal are very good and that ExpressionEngine is quite powerful, what's you guys opinions for a website of this magnitude?
Any constructive advice welcomed!