October 18th, 2009
Despite the tough economic climate, Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) announced net profits of S$421.9 million on October 13, down just 3.6% from the previous year. This came on the back of significant cuts in wages, operation costs and budget by the SPH group in the past year. Wage cost had been slashed by 13.9% as the group lowered bonus provision for staff. Group chairman Tony Tan commented that the cost cutting measures were instrumental in allowing SPH “to weather the financial storm and maximise shareholders’ value”.
The SPH group was not spared from the many problems plaguing the world’s top newspaper organisations. Its largest newspaper, The Straits Times suffered a 2.8% decline in circulation. Chief Executive Officer Alan Chan also acknowledged that the group was dealing with the general decline in advertising revenue. In addition, the group suffered a net loss of $6.2 million in external investments amid the economic crisis.
The group’s property holdings proved to be its saving grace, as it experienced a revenue increase of 43.2%. This was due to the increased contributions of the newly renovated Paragon and Sky@eleven condominiums.
Click here for Asiaone.com’s coverage of the announcement.