MEDIA & MARKETING | Staff Reporter, Singapore

SPH's net profit down 45.2% to $28.9m

Magazine performance continued to deteriorate.

Singapore Press Holdings Limited (SPH) today reported its results for the third quarter ended in May. Net profit attributable to shareholders of $28.9m was $23.8m or 45.2% lower against the corresponding period last year.

The results for the current quarter were impacted by impairment charges of $37.8m, which primarily related to the magazine business whose performance continued to deteriorate further amid unfavourable market conditions.

At the operating level, Group recurring earnings of $34.3m was $26.5m or 43.6% lower year-on-year. Excluding the impairment charges, group recurring earnings would have fallen by $17.1m or 19.2% due to decline in Media revenue.

Group operating revenue slid $31.6m or 10.8% YoY to $260m, as the performance of the Media business continued to be hurt by the disruption of the media industry and a muted economic environment. Reflecting the challenging headwinds, the Media business saw a $34.1m or 15.7% dip in operating revenue as advertising revenue fell $29.2m or 18.7% YoY and circulation revenue declined $4.8m or 10.6% against 3Q 2016.

Despite a depressed retail environment, the Property segment delivered a creditable set of results with a $1.2m or 2% YoY revenue growth. The steady performance was achieved on the back of higher rental income from the Group’s retail assets.

Revenue from the Group’s other businesses was $1.2m or 8.2% higher against the corresponding period last year, with the maiden contribution from the newly acquired healthcare business partially offset by lower revenue from the exhibitions business.

On the cost front, the Group continued to exercise stringent cost discipline. Excluding the impairment charges, total costs for the quarter were $193.6m, some $14.0m or 6.7% lower YoY despite inflationary pressures.

Investment income at $11.7m was $7.0m or 37.4% below 3Q 2016, attributable to a fall in dividend income and lower fair value gains on hedges for portfolio investments.

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