Singapore Press Holdings

Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) on Wednesday reported a 32 percent rise in full-year net profit, helped in part by divestment and fair value gains.

Net profit attributable to shareholders rose to S$350.1 million in the year ended August 31 compared to 265.3 million last year, it said in a statement.

The results for the year were boosted by a gain of $149.7 million from partial divestment of the group's stake in the regional online classifieds business, and a fair value gain on investment properties of $57.4 million, Singapore Press Holdings said.

But these gains were partially offset by charges of S$96 million, which included impairment of the magazine business, the company said.

Overall the company saw a net gain of S$127.6 million compared to last financial year.

However, operating revenue shrank by 8.8 percent to S$1.03 billion as the disruption to the media industry continued to impact its media business.

Singapore Press said the revenue from the media business fell 13 percent from last year.

Singapore Press, the city-state's dominant newspaper publisher, like many of its peers in the industry, is grappling with digital disruption that has eroded readership and advertising revenue, the report said.

The company said it is focusing on the disruption to its media business as it accelerated a previously announced round of job cuts.

"The group will complete the full 10 percent staff reduction announced last October by the end of this calendar year, and is expected to incur retrenchment costs of approximately $13 million in the current quarter," Ng Yat Chung, Chief Executive Officer of SPH said.

The company had 4,473 employees at the end of May, with a total wage bill of S$276 million.

The property segment revenue, however, rose 1.2 percent, bolstered by higher rental income from the Group's retail assets.

SPH proposed a final dividend of 9 cents per share.

SPH shares closed 0.7 percent lower at S$2.69 on Wednesday before the results were announced.