Announcement - TV Competition In Singapore

BackNov 13, 2003
12 November 2003 - In response to press queries on TV competition in Singapore, Singapore Press Holdings issued the following statement today:

Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew is right in saying that both SPH MediaWorks and MediaCorp have incurred losses in their TV operations. This is despite public service broadcast funding from the Media Development Authority (MDA), the bulk of which goes to MediaCorp.

Higher programme acquisition costs and deep advertising discounting have contributed to such losses for both companies. Poor economic conditions have also led to a fall in advertising revenues.

However, as SPH MediaWorks is a start-up company with high upfront investment, losses in the initial years of operations are to be expected. Despite being a newcomer, MediaWorks has successfully captured a significant share of viewership within two years. It also clinched the Broadcaster of the Year Award at the Asian TV Awards 2002while its Chinese Channel U was named Terrestrial Channel of the Year. For this year's awards, it has secured 11 nominations. This is an achievement for a young outfit with only 300 staff.

SPH MediaWorks will continue to strive to narrow its losses through greater efficiency and judicious cost management. In addition, it will further improve programme quality to attract more viewers and advertisers.

SPH's long-term growth strategy is to strengthen its presence across multiple platforms, including TV, both in Singapore and the region.

Issued by Singapore Press Holdings

For more information, please contact:

Irene Ngoo
Assistant Vice President
Corporate Relations
Tel: 6319 1216
Fax: 6319 8150

About SPH

Main board listed Singapore Press Holdings Limited is the leading news and information provider, offering quality content for print, Internet, TV and radio. It publishes 14 newspapers in the four official languages and six lifestyle periodicals. Everyday, 2.78 million individuals, or 90 per cent of people above 15 years old, read one of the SPH publications while the online editions of its six main dailies enjoy some 120 million pageviews a month. SPH has ventured into the broadcast medium and operates two popular free-to-air TV channels, Channel U in Chinese and Channel i in English. It also operates two entertainment radio channels, UFM 100.3 FM in Chinese and WKRZ 91.3 FM in English, under a joint venture company UnionWorks with NTUC Media.
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Submitted by Ginney Lim May Ling, Group Company Secretaryon 13/11/2003to the SGX