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SPH MEDIA RESTRUCTING

Past Cabinet member Kaw Boon Kwan will preside over the new media entity after Singapore Press Holdings or SPH reestablish its media services.

The incumbent shareholders of SPH discussed the decision to appoint him because it is the right choice. The Minister for Communications and Information S. Iswaran said on May 10, the board agreed to appoint Mr. Khaw because of his impressive service portfolio, given that the task is so enormous and important on a national scale of complexity.

Non-profit Company

Straits times

The aforementioned non-profit entity will be a CLG or a company limited by guarantee and all of the media operations of SPH will be under its supervision. CLG’s are usually created to execute non-profit operations with the public or national interest at its value. The restructuring of SPH’s media organizations like straits times is under the approval of the board of shareholders.

Mr. Iswaran further mentioned, “With his high standing and more than 25 years of public service experience in various senior appointments, Mr. Khaw will be able to provide strong strategic leadership for the CLG.”

Mr. Khaw’s Achievements

Mr. Khaw retired from politics in 2020 after working in public service for 19 years. He recently served as Coordinating Minister for Infrastructure and Minister for Transport.

He started joining the Singaporean government in 2001 and earned the nickname “Mr. Fix It” because of his revolutionary tactics in handling complex issues across ministries.

He was a former Senior Minister for Health and he assisted in the war against the SARS or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome outbreak in 2003, he was then promoted as Minister for Health the next year.

After the 2011 elections, he was transferred to the Ministry for National Development where he assisted in the increase of supply and subsidies for housing developments, that was the time when the affordability of housing was difficult and became a national concern.

According to Mr. Khaw when he accepted the responsibility, he said that he was concerned as he admitted that he has no experience in digital media but he ensures that he will do his best to do his job.

“I will see how we can adapt relevant experiences from successful transformation elsewhere,” he added.

.Mr. Khaw also said that even though his retirement last year was peaceful, he will not sit idly by knowing that the Government of Singapore is subject to decline.

“I will see how I can help unleash the talent and the passion in our newsrooms. We will refocus on our primary mission of providing quality journalism to help build this young nation.”

Minimalist Daily Routine

Mr. Khaw has a very austere daily routine, that includes his morning ritual of spiritual boost, since his retirement in politics in 2020, he wants to protect his routine.

He added, “I know my limitations and have started to read and consult widely. Fortunately, I know the breadth and depth of talents in SPH Media. My job is to support them to help realize their ambition.” 

“Journalism is a profession and a noble one which I respect. The lifestyle is ridiculous, the time pressure is unyielding. To these professionals, the least we can do is to acknowledge their sacrifice, support them, and show it. I will do my part.”

Mr. Iswaran also mentioned in his speech in the Parliament that “the reputation and high level of trust that SPH has built with generations of readers, domestically and internationally”.

SPH Innovation

To ensure the long-term viability of the enterprise, the Government stands ready to provide the CLG with funding in areas such as digital innovation and capability development. This is to ensure that it has the wherewithal to innovate, build digital and other essential capabilities, and confidently take on new challenges, he added.

“The new media company must have a long-term, sustainable business model with different revenue sources – including traditional advertising and subscription revenues, complemented by government funding, and contributions from its management shareholders and benefactors as other components,” he said.

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