As a part of its company-wide restructuring exercise, Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) plans to trim 10 percent of its workforce. This move will affect mainly the part-time workforce, reports the financial news agency.
Bloomberg further confirmed reports that the Singapore media conglomerate is planning to merge two tabloids, The New Paper and My Paper. The new “free sheet” will focus on providing news to business-savvy readers to compete with MediaCorp’s Today newspaper.
Towards the end of fiscal May 2016, SPH had a head count of 4,229 employees, and its staff costs amounted to some $277 million, Yahoo! News Singapore reports. However multiple sources within the financial agency confirmed that the company plans to hold a town hall with its employees on Monday, October 17.
An employee from the SPH publication division, who wish to be unnamed, said that about 20 staff from The New Paper will be laid off. While another claimed that the manpower at TNP to be cut by 50, while Yahoo understands that the tabloid currently has 90 staffers.
Bloomberg said SPH replied via email to queries on the matter, simply stating that they would not respond to speculation.
Post this news making rounds, the mood at SPH seems to be sombre and upset, according to some employees. Most are worried about their future, as they are unsure if they would be the one laid off. However, sources inside The Business Times believe the newspaper will remain largely unaffected by the cull.
For the fiscal third quarter ended 31 May, SPH reported that its net profit fell by 46.4 per cent to $52.7 million compared to the same period a year earlier, dragged down by a decline in its core media business and sluggish economic conditions. The media business saw a 9.2 per cent drop in advertisment revenue to $15.7 million. The company will release earnings for the year ended Aug. 31 on October 14.
Circulation revenue is also expected to fall slightly as a price increase is offset by a decline in daily circulation.