Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) will conduct a major restructuring exercise for its Chinese Media Group (CMG), to merge editorial resources from Lianhe Zaobao, Lianhe Wanbao, and CMG Digital to form NewsHub. Shin Min Daily News will remain unaffected by the restructuring exercise, and its existing editorial team will continue to provide news coverage for the evening paper.
NewsHub will facilitate news coverage and offer latest news updates for CMG’s digital platforms, including zaobao.sg and zaobao.com, as well as 96.3 Hao FM, SPH Radio’s new Chinese station slated for launch next January. It will also provide more in-depth and quality news coverage for Lianhe Zaobao and Lianhe Wanbao.
NewsHub will commence operations on 1 December 2017, and will be helmed by Han Yong May, former CMG digital editor and Lianhe Zaobao‘s associate editor. Besides the usual news sections such as local, court and crime, business and sports, NewsHub will also include a breaking news team. A special report team will also be formed for the local news section to offer more in-depth news reports, in addition to its existing political news team. The photo team will also be part of NewsHub for more effective use of resources.
Following the restructure, Lianhe Zaobao’s editor Goh Sin Teck will also helm the dual role of editor of Lianhe Wanbao. He is responsible for the positioning of both newspapers, leading the sub-editors and design teams to package news for different target audiences. Goh will continue to lead the zaobao.com team to cover news from China and focus on the website’s business operations in that country.
Former deputy digital editor of CMG Ang Yiting will helm the role of digital editor, and will work closely with NewsHub to develop CMG’s digital platforms. Loh Woon Yen, former VP of culture, education and new growth at CMG, will assume the role of managing editor. Loh is tasked with CMG’s operations in the areas of culture, education, publishing, events and branding promotions.
“Due to media disruption, the local Chinese media has reached a critical phase where there is a need for transformation. The organisation structure and mode of operation for the past decades will not be able to bring us forward. Technology can help us to expand our market and provide us with new platforms to reach out to more readers. The developments in the larger media environment also lend new opportunities for the Chinese media,” Lee Huay Leng, head of CMG, said.
“However, it is essential for us to abandon our old ways of thinking to meet new challenges. With readers having more media choices, we need to transform ourselves, invest in resources to produce news with even higher quality, and to effectively deliver our content to readers, so that we will continue to be the readers’ choice,” Lee added.
According to Han, the integration of editorial resources is not about serving the same content repeatedly on different platforms, but rather about pooling talents together to produce the most suitable content for each platform and target audience.
“The launch of NewsHub reflects a global pivot towards media integration. Today, journalists are not just storytellers, but insight experts as well. They need to be the generalist and the specialist simultaneously to bring impactful stories to the public,” she added.
This news follows SPH’s recent announcement of several changes in the pipeline for its print and digital offerings including newspapers The Straits Times (ST) and The Business Times (BT). In October, it also unveiled plans to complete its full 10% staff reduction by the end of 2017. Previously, the job cuts were slated to conclude in 2018. According to BT, the job cuts affect 230 jobs, where 130 will be retrenchments.
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