SMRT sees dip in ridership and revenue amidst SG$86m profit loss

SMRT Trains has seen a dip revenue and ridership for the financial year ending March 2018. According to data from a its operations review report, total revenue was down from SG$791 million in 2017, to SG$763 million in FY-2018, with the company experiencing a SG$86 million in profit loss after tax.

This was due to lower train ridership numbers and lower average fare, with total ridership amounted to 753 million in FY-2018, down from 768 million in FY-2017. Average weekday ridership was at 2,258,000 in FY-2018, down from 2,353,000 the year before.

When contacted by Marketing, on if this would effect the price of media spaces on SMRT Trains property, Nicole Batchelor, GM of marketing at The X Collective (SMRT's advertising arm) said:

"The X Collective (XCO) is Singapore’s largest and most connected digital out-of-home (OOH) media company. Beyond rail advertising, our multiple advertising assets include roads, digital and mobile. Marketers are able to leverage our integrated reach for impactful campaigns and showcase their brands prominently across the millions that spend time with us every day."

The company also experienced an increase in operating expenses due to “higher maintenance-related expenses for the ageing network”. This was along with higher loss from the disposal of property, plant and equipment, the report added.

Most recently, SMRT Corp appointed civil servant Neo Kian Hong as CEO, with Desmond Kuek is stepping down from the position, after more than five years in the role. Prior to the move, Neo was the permanent secretary for defence development, and was previously permanent secretary (education development) in the Ministry of Education from July 2013 to June 2017.

SMRT vice-president for corporate communications Patrick Nathan also left the company after six years with the organisation. Taking over from Nathan was Margaret Teo, previously head of corporate and marketing communications since August 2014.

To bolster train operations and efficiency, SMRT Trains also partnered McLaren Applied Technologies to incorporate condition-monitoring solutions which track and predict the performance of SMRT trains. The latter is part of the McLaren Group that includes the Formula 1 (F1) team, McLaren Racing and McLaren Automotive.

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