Singapore Press Holdings plans to divest its 20 per cent stake in Mediacorp TV (which owns Channels 5, 8 and U and Mediacorp Studios) and 40 per cent stake in Mediacorp Press, the publisher of the Today newspaper, for $18 million, the firm said on Friday (Aug 25).
SPH expects to record a writedown of about $31 million in its books. The deal is likely to be completed at the end of September.
The deal comes 12 years after SPH purchased the stakes as part of a media industry asset consolidation in 2005. During the consolidation, SPH transferred a TV channel to Mediacorp and took a 20 per cent stake in Mediacorp TV.
SPH also merged its free newspaper Streats with Today, and invested in a 40 per cent stake in Mediacorp Press.
As part of the deal announced on Friday, Mediacorp will also stop publishing any soft copy or computer-readable format of Today that has the look and feel of a hardcopy version of the newspaper, for a period of five years.