Singapore Press Holdings to cut 5 percent of media staff in restructuring

Singapore 50 dollar bill

Singapore Press Holdings said Thursday it would cut 5 percent of its media staff in a restructuring which includes changes to ad sales practices and more sharing of content across titles and platforms.

“Although SPH’s total audience across its platforms has increased, its print revenue continues to decline. In addition, the uncertain macroeconomic outlook this year has seen consumer demand fall and advertisers scaling back on advertising spend,” SPH said in a statement. “This is a good time for SPH to consolidate its strengths as a media owner and streamline its media and magazines operations.”

The layoffs are expected to be completed by the end of December, or the first quarter of SPH’s fiscal year, the property and media company said in a filing to SGX.

“This restructuring exercise is necessary to enhance our operational efficiency and strengthen our position in this challenging economic and media environment. I would like to thank the union for its understanding and support through the exercise,” Ng Yat Chung, SPH CEO, said in the statement.

Affected staff will receive compensation on terms negotiated with the union, and SPH will provide on-site career guidance, employment placement services and professional counseling support, the filing said.

SPH said it would be restructuring its media services and magazine business to sell magazine and newspaper titles together across multiple formats. It added that clients would be able to have better targeted ad reach.

Content resources would be shared, SPH said.

“For example, HWZ’s tech expertise will help beef up the tech columns of news titles such as The Straits Times and The Business Times. Some
of the content can also be ported over to radio and even SPH’s out-of-home screens in lifts and commercial areas,” SPH said. “This ultimately will drive subscriber and advertising revenue.”

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