3 Quick Things Investors Should Learn About Singapore Press Holdings Limited

Singapore Press Holdings Limited  (SGX: T39) is one of the cool companies in Singapore which shares webcasts of their quarterly earnings presentations (the link for Singapore Press Holdings, which is better known as SPH, is here).

SPH may be best known as a publisher of most of the major newspapers here in Singapore. But there’s more to the company beyond that; it also engages in property development and other activities like events management. In addition, the firm’s also the majority owner and manager of SPH REIT (SGX: SK6U), a real estate investment trust which owns retail malls.

You can read more about SPH here.

What’s the story?

Below are three useful things I learned from listening to SPH’s fiscal second-quarter earnings webcast for the financial year ending 31 September 2015 (FY2015):

  1. For the first half of FY2015, the advertising segment (under Media) of SPH made up 58.2% of its operating revenue. Unfortunately, newspaper ad revenue for the first half of FY2015 declined 8.8% year on year following FY2014’s 7.4% drop. SPH’s trend of falling newspaper ad revenue tracks the 6% year on year reduction in total advertising expenditure (Adex) in Singapore.
  2. As mentioned in a previous article, circulation revenue for SPH had fallen by 7% year on year for the first half of FY2015. The daily average circulation for SPH though, was flat year on year. Composition wise, digital circulation became more prominent in the first six months of FY2015. For instance, the digital circulation for The Straits Times/The Sunday Times made up about a third of the total circulation (digital and print) of said newspaper.
  3. On the property side, rental income from Paragon and Clementi Mall helped prop up SPH’s operating profit. The company also benefited from  maiden contributions from Seletar Mall which opened last November. Investors might want to note that SPH REIT has the first right of refusal to Seletar Mall. Find out more about SPH REIT here.

Foolish takeaway

To buy and hold a company’s shares for the long term also means keeping up with developments in the firm.

The access to management teams via webcast gives the Foolish investor a fair chance to judge if they’d like to be invested alongside those teams. It also helps us put together a more complete thesis around a company and keep up with developments in its industry.

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore contributor Chin Hui Leong doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned.