1 Nov 2006

TODAY's Editor-in-Chief Resigns

This terse NASDAQ bulletin was seen on Singapore Surf:

Singapore Today Editor-In-Chief Resigns - Sources

SINGAPORE -(Dow Jones)- Today newspaper chief executive and editor-in-chief Mano Sabnani has resigned and will leave the newspaper in the next month, people familar with the situation said Tuesday.

State broadcaster MediaCorp., which is the majority owner of the daily freesheet, wouldn't confirm Sabnani's resignation.

"When there are major changes in our management line-up, we will issue a media statement accordingly," a MediaCorp spokeswoman said in an email.

Sabnani referred questions to MediaCorp's corporate communications department.

Launched in November 2000, Today has built a daily readership of 550,000 with independent commentary that has occasionally tested the limits of the Singapore government's tolerance for media criticism.

In July the paper dropped one of its columnists, popular local blogger Mr Brown, after the government stridently attacked an article he wrote that poked fun at a spate of price increases in the wake of May's general elections.

Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. (T39.SG), which publishes the city-state's biggest circulation English daily The Straits Times, owns 40% of the MediaCorp unit that publishes Today.

-By Kevin Lim & Stephen Wright, Dow Jones Newswires;

65 6415 4156; kevin.lim@dowjones.com;

65 6415 4151; stephen.wright@dowjones.com

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Structural changes at MediaCorp for greater integration across platforms
By Farah Abdul Rahim, Channel NewsAsia | Posted: 31 October 2006 2042 hrs

SINGAPORE: MediaCorp has announced structural and management changes to bring its different media platforms closer with greater media convergence.

A new Corporate Marketing & Strategic Management division will be created to help build a powerful MediaCorp brand in Singapore and the region.

It will come under the charge of Ms Alice Tan as Chief Marketing Officer.

Ms Lim Suat Jien will take over her place as Managing Director of MediaCorp TV12.

The sales teams for MediaCorp TV and TV12 will be consolidated under the helm of Mr Melvin Ang, Managing Director of MediaCorp Studios.

Those from News, Radio, Press and Publishing will move to a new subsidiary, MediaCorp Enterprises, which will function as the cluster's sales and marketing arm.

Mr James Yip, Managing Director of MediaCorp Radio, will concurrently head the Integrated Media Division.

MediaCorp's TV, radio, print and online newsrooms will be integrated into one powerhouse, to leverage on Channel NewsAsia, 938LIVE and TODAY, as well as drive up editorial standards through training and recruitment.

This is part of a two-pronged approach, which includes the setting up of a ‘newsplex’ to house MediaCorp's TV, radio and print newsrooms all under one roof at its new home in Bukit Batok.

Deputy Chief Executive Officer Shaun Seow will head a committee to chart the road map for this integration.

Murali Subramaniam will leave the TODAY newspaper to assist Mr Seow in the integration efforts as Vice-President of Editorial Operations from 1st January 2007.

Training will be stepped up for journalists to be equipped with skills in more than one media.

To drive up editorial standards, MediaCorp will be investing heavily in training and hiring experienced journalists.

Mr P N Balji has rejoined the group as Editorial Director to help raise journalistic standards across the group.

He will also directly supervise the TODAY newspaper after the resignation of Mr Mano Sabnani.

He will be assisted by Mr Walter Fernandez who, as Managing Editor, will help establish a vibrant electronic presence for TODAY and work closely with its broadcast cousins - Channel NewsAsia and 938LIVE.

TODAY's publishing and business development functions will be overseen by Mr Philip Koh, who will now be the Managing Director of both MediaCorp Press and Publishing.

The changes take effect from 1st November 2006. - CNA/so

Anonymous said...

Friday, October 20, 2006

Without qualifiers, Today is Singapore's No 2 daily
Christie Loh
christie@newstoday.com.sg

Tabloid-sized Today continues to defy naysayers into its sixth year of being.
.
According to Nielsen Media Research's annual survey released yesterday, the free newspaper moved up to become Singapore's second most-read daily — regardless of language — as consumers defected from the Chinese to the English medium.
.
MediaCorp's other media platforms — television, radio, and magazines — mostly enjoyed audience loyalty, with some even enlarging their territory.
.
The past year saw Today's readership base grow by 34,000 — or 6.3 per cent — to 571,000, which makes up 16.9 per cent of the local population aged 15 and above. This unseated Lianhe Zaobao from second place. The Chinese newspaper's market share dropped to 16.6 per cent from 18 per cent. Other Chinese dailies also suffered a decline in readership.
.
On the other hand, Today's "increase in readership came from mainly PMEBs (professionals, managers, executives and businessmen). Increases were also seen among white-collar workers, housewives and students," said Ms Rebecca Tan, executive director of Nielsen, which sells the survey findings to subscribers including media companies and advertisers.
.
Before the latest poll results, Today — owned by Media-Corp Press — rose from being the second most-read English morning paper to becoming the second most-read English paper last year. It now sits comfortably ahead of both Lianhe Zaobao and The New Paper.
.
Remaining top of the pack is The Straits Times. Owned by Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), the 161-year-old newspaper holds 40.2 per cent of the pie, a tad lower than the 40.6 per cent it held in last year's survey.
.
The results arose from interviews with 4,514 persons aged 15 and above, between July last year and this June. Questions about the nine dailies showed that Today and The Business Times both enjoyed the fastest growth in percentage terms.
.
Mr Mano Sabnani, managing director and editor-in-chief of MediaCorp Press, was all smiles: "Comprehensiveness, conciseness, and our gain in credibility are underpinning demand from all sectors."
.
But he wants to see more growth — through a gradual step-up in circulation, further editorial improvements and a revamped website to be launched soon. "For a free newspaper, increasing use of the Net is not a minus. In fact, it strongly complements the printed version," said Mr Sabnani.
.
Media outfits have started investing in the online platform, which has been said to be capturing eyeballs at the expense of newspapers. Earlier this year, MediaCorp launched a video-on-demand service — MobTV — that uses broadband to stream TV programmes to audiences anytime. The project aims to boost viewership.
.
In any case, there seems to be enough room to accommodate different media.
.
"People go to TV and online media for immediacy, but they'll turn to print for the full story," Dr Linda Perry, senior visiting fellow at the National University of Singapore's Communications and New Media Programme, told Today.
.
Some 97 per cent of the population above the age of 15 still watches free-to-air TV, making it the most pervasive medium. Still, Nielsen noted a slight decrease in daily viewing, probably because of "busy lifestyles" and "greater media choices".
.
On a weekly basis, however, Channel NewsAsia bucked the downtrend, raising viewership from 1.48 million to 1.59 million.
.
As for radio, Class 95 FM boosted listenership by the highest percentage among 17 stations polled.
Christie Loh
christie@newstoday.com.sg

Tabloid-sized Today continues to defy naysayers into its sixth year of being.
.
According to Nielsen Media Research's annual survey released yesterday, the free newspaper moved up to become Singapore's second most-read daily — regardless of language — as consumers defected from the Chinese to the English medium.
.
MediaCorp's other media platforms — television, radio, and magazines — mostly enjoyed audience loyalty, with some even enlarging their territory.
.
The past year saw Today's readership base grow by 34,000 — or 6.3 per cent — to 571,000, which makes up 16.9 per cent of the local population aged 15 and above. This unseated Lianhe Zaobao from second place. The Chinese newspaper's market share dropped to 16.6 per cent from 18 per cent. Other Chinese dailies also suffered a decline in readership.
.
On the other hand, Today's "increase in readership came from mainly PMEBs (professionals, managers, executives and businessmen). Increases were also seen among white-collar workers, housewives and students," said Ms Rebecca Tan, executive director of Nielsen, which sells the survey findings to subscribers including media companies and advertisers.
.
Before the latest poll results, Today — owned by Media-Corp Press — rose from being the second most-read English morning paper to becoming the second most-read English paper last year. It now sits comfortably ahead of both Lianhe Zaobao and The New Paper.
.
Remaining top of the pack is The Straits Times. Owned by Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), the 161-year-old newspaper holds 40.2 per cent of the pie, a tad lower than the 40.6 per cent it held in last year's survey.
.
The results arose from interviews with 4,514 persons aged 15 and above, between July last year and this June. Questions about the nine dailies showed that Today and The Business Times both enjoyed the fastest growth in percentage terms.
.
Mr Mano Sabnani, managing director and editor-in-chief of MediaCorp Press, was all smiles: "Comprehensiveness, conciseness, and our gain in credibility are underpinning demand from all sectors."
.
But he wants to see more growth — through a gradual step-up in circulation, further editorial improvements and a revamped website to be launched soon. "For a free newspaper, increasing use of the Net is not a minus. In fact, it strongly complements the printed version," said Mr Sabnani.
.
Media outfits have started investing in the online platform, which has been said to be capturing eyeballs at the expense of newspapers. Earlier this year, MediaCorp launched a video-on-demand service — MobTV — that uses broadband to stream TV programmes to audiences anytime. The project aims to boost viewership.
.
In any case, there seems to be enough room to accommodate different media.
.
"People go to TV and online media for immediacy, but they'll turn to print for the full story," Dr Linda Perry, senior visiting fellow at the National University of Singapore's Communications and New Media Programme, told Today.
.
Some 97 per cent of the population above the age of 15 still watches free-to-air TV, making it the most pervasive medium. Still, Nielsen noted a slight decrease in daily viewing, probably because of "busy lifestyles" and "greater media choices".
.
On a weekly basis, however, Channel NewsAsia bucked the downtrend, raising viewership from 1.48 million to 1.59 million.
.
As for radio, Class 95 FM boosted listenership by the highest percentage among 17 stations polled. Christie Loh
christie@newstoday.com.sg

Tabloid-sized Today continues to defy naysayers into its sixth year of being.
.
According to Nielsen Media Research's annual survey released yesterday, the free newspaper moved up to become Singapore's second most-read daily — regardless of language — as consumers defected from the Chinese to the English medium.
.
MediaCorp's other media platforms — television, radio, and magazines — mostly enjoyed audience loyalty, with some even enlarging their territory.
.
The past year saw Today's readership base grow by 34,000 — or 6.3 per cent — to 571,000, which makes up 16.9 per cent of the local population aged 15 and above. This unseated Lianhe Zaobao from second place. The Chinese newspaper's market share dropped to 16.6 per cent from 18 per cent. Other Chinese dailies also suffered a decline in readership.
.
On the other hand, Today's "increase in readership came from mainly PMEBs (professionals, managers, executives and businessmen). Increases were also seen among white-collar workers, housewives and students," said Ms Rebecca Tan, executive director of Nielsen, which sells the survey findings to subscribers including media companies and advertisers.
.
Before the latest poll results, Today — owned by Media-Corp Press — rose from being the second most-read English morning paper to becoming the second most-read English paper last year. It now sits comfortably ahead of both Lianhe Zaobao and The New Paper.
.
Remaining top of the pack is The Straits Times. Owned by Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), the 161-year-old newspaper holds 40.2 per cent of the pie, a tad lower than the 40.6 per cent it held in last year's survey.
.
The results arose from interviews with 4,514 persons aged 15 and above, between July last year and this June. Questions about the nine dailies showed that Today and The Business Times both enjoyed the fastest growth in percentage terms.
.
Mr Mano Sabnani, managing director and editor-in-chief of MediaCorp Press, was all smiles: "Comprehensiveness, conciseness, and our gain in credibility are underpinning demand from all sectors."
.
But he wants to see more growth — through a gradual step-up in circulation, further editorial improvements and a revamped website to be launched soon. "For a free newspaper, increasing use of the Net is not a minus. In fact, it strongly complements the printed version," said Mr Sabnani.
.
Media outfits have started investing in the online platform, which has been said to be capturing eyeballs at the expense of newspapers. Earlier this year, MediaCorp launched a video-on-demand service — MobTV — that uses broadband to stream TV programmes to audiences anytime. The project aims to boost viewership.
.
In any case, there seems to be enough room to accommodate different media.
.
"People go to TV and online media for immediacy, but they'll turn to print for the full story," Dr Linda Perry, senior visiting fellow at the National University of Singapore's Communications and New Media Programme, told Today.
.
Some 97 per cent of the population above the age of 15 still watches free-to-air TV, making it the most pervasive medium. Still, Nielsen noted a slight decrease in daily viewing, probably because of "busy lifestyles" and "greater media choices".
.
On a weekly basis, however, Channel NewsAsia bucked the downtrend, raising viewership from 1.48 million to 1.59 million.
.
As for radio, Class 95 FM boosted listenership by the highest percentage among 17 stations polled. Christie Loh
christie@newstoday.com.sg

Tabloid-sized Today continues to defy naysayers into its sixth year of being.
.
According to Nielsen Media Research's annual survey released yesterday, the free newspaper moved up to become Singapore's second most-read daily — regardless of language — as consumers defected from the Chinese to the English medium.
.
MediaCorp's other media platforms — television, radio, and magazines — mostly enjoyed audience loyalty, with some even enlarging their territory.
.
The past year saw Today's readership base grow by 34,000 — or 6.3 per cent — to 571,000, which makes up 16.9 per cent of the local population aged 15 and above. This unseated Lianhe Zaobao from second place. The Chinese newspaper's market share dropped to 16.6 per cent from 18 per cent. Other Chinese dailies also suffered a decline in readership.
.
On the other hand, Today's "increase in readership came from mainly PMEBs (professionals, managers, executives and businessmen). Increases were also seen among white-collar workers, housewives and students," said Ms Rebecca Tan, executive director of Nielsen, which sells the survey findings to subscribers including media companies and advertisers.
.
Before the latest poll results, Today — owned by Media-Corp Press — rose from being the second most-read English morning paper to becoming the second most-read English paper last year. It now sits comfortably ahead of both Lianhe Zaobao and The New Paper.
.
Remaining top of the pack is The Straits Times. Owned by Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), the 161-year-old newspaper holds 40.2 per cent of the pie, a tad lower than the 40.6 per cent it held in last year's survey.
.
The results arose from interviews with 4,514 persons aged 15 and above, between July last year and this June. Questions about the nine dailies showed that Today and The Business Times both enjoyed the fastest growth in percentage terms.
.
Mr Mano Sabnani, managing director and editor-in-chief of MediaCorp Press, was all smiles: "Comprehensiveness, conciseness, and our gain in credibility are underpinning demand from all sectors."
.
But he wants to see more growth — through a gradual step-up in circulation, further editorial improvements and a revamped website to be launched soon. "For a free newspaper, increasing use of the Net is not a minus. In fact, it strongly complements the printed version," said Mr Sabnani.
.
Media outfits have started investing in the online platform, which has been said to be capturing eyeballs at the expense of newspapers. Earlier this year, MediaCorp launched a video-on-demand service — MobTV — that uses broadband to stream TV programmes to audiences anytime. The project aims to boost viewership.
.
In any case, there seems to be enough room to accommodate different media.
.
"People go to TV and online media for immediacy, but they'll turn to print for the full story," Dr Linda Perry, senior visiting fellow at the National University of Singapore's Communications and New Media Programme, told Today.
.
Some 97 per cent of the population above the age of 15 still watches free-to-air TV, making it the most pervasive medium. Still, Nielsen noted a slight decrease in daily viewing, probably because of "busy lifestyles" and "greater media choices".
.
On a weekly basis, however, Channel NewsAsia bucked the downtrend, raising viewership from 1.48 million to 1.59 million.
.
As for radio, Class 95 FM boosted listenership by the highest percentage among 17 stations polled.

Anonymous said...

MediaCorp Press 28 March 2003
Singapore - 24 March 2003 - Mr. P N Balji will relinquish his position as CEO of MediaCorp Press Ltd and Editor-In-Chief of TODAY when his 3-year contract expires on 19 July 2003. Mr. Balji, who is 55 years old, has agreed to stay on as Executive Advisor.

He will be succeeded by Mr. Mano Sabnani, who comes to the job with impressive credentials. Mr. Mano brings with him 25 years of working experience. His first 18 years were spent in journalism, of which 8 years were as Editor and Managing Editor of the Business Times and the Straits Times. Mr. Mano was Research Director (Equities) and Managing Director (Investments) of DBS Bank from 1996 to 2000. He is no stranger to TODAY, as he has been engaged by TODAY for over a year now as a consultant to provide editorial content and to train and develop our editorial staff. A copy of his bio-data is attached.

Mr. Balji said, "I have spent 33 years in the work world. It is time to smell the roses. I am looking forward to a change in lifestyle although I will still be closely associated with TODAY in an executive capacity as Executive Advisor. The TODAY business has been an exhilarating experience. The team has been wonderful. Despite the competitive pressures and a full-blown recession, TODAY has come a long way. Revenues have been hard fought but they are going up. Readership figures have gone up dramatically. I am satisfied with the progress made so far and I am confident the team under the new CEO/Editor-In-Chief will take the paper to new heights."

Mr. Ernest Wong, Chairman of MediaCorp Press Ltd, who is closely involved with this change, has this to say, "Mr Balji and his team have done a great job. In just two years, TODAY has been accepted as a credible newspaper with readership of about 600,000. It is on track to being commercially viable. The competition has thrown everything it could think of at Balji and his team. Not only have they survived but the competition has actually brought out the best in them: Creativity, Grit and all. The newspaper business is gruelling and very demanding on the time of its masters. I find it amazing that Balji has actually done 33 years of it. He must have had great passion and vocation for journalism to go this distance. I am pleased that he could see TODAY through our critical first phase of success, and that he will be staying on in an executive capacity to help Mr. Mano Sabnani take TODAY to the next growth phase. Mr. Mano is well suited for the job of CEO and Editor-In-Chief of TODAY in view of his extensive experience in journalism at senior editorial positions. His recent years working at senior positions in business and finance will also help to give the necessary business perspective to things."


MANO SABNANI

Mr Mano Sabnani, aged 53, has 25 years of experience in total as a newspaper journalist, editor, manager, investment banker, and equity research director. His varied experience has helped him build formidable knowledge and deep insights in current affairs covering economics and politics as well as various business sectors, including SMEs and their problems, the business scenario today, fund raising techniques, IPO preparation, mergers and acquisitions and financial analysis.

He has an extensive network of contacts among newsmakers, companies, financiers, various professions and media professionals. These contacts, developed painstakingly over 25 years, can be put to good use for the benefit of any organisation. Mano also has strong managerial and supervisory skills, developed while leading a newspaper, a research unit, and an investment banking department.

Mr Mano is currently an executive director at Corporate Brokers International, a boutique advisory firm servicing local and regional SMEs as mentors and angels. While servicing SMEs at CBI, Mano has also been helping out as a consultant at MediaCorp's TODAY newspaper and Channel News Asia, focusing on business news coverage and training of journalists

Prior to that, Mano's most recent position was with the Development Bank of Singapore, as its Managing Director for Equity Capital markets. He helped more than 20 companies in their IPO efforts and these included SMRT Corporation, Singapore Exchange Ltd and Hyflux Ltd. He also helped to put together several M & A deals.

Earlier, Mano was the Managing Director for Investments at Individual Banking, DBS. In that role, he developed several innovative products, such as Eight (an umbrella fund), for DBS Bank's wide customer base. He also developed and managed Investor Online, an Internet-based share trading and advisory service.

From January 1996 to August 1997, Mano was the Director of Research at DBS Securities. Here, he managed a team of 40 analysts and support staff who covered the regional equity markets. Sectors covered included Electronics, IT, Marine, Transport, Property and Banking.

Mano is also a well-known writer and commentator in the mass media. In his 18 years as a financial writer, he rose from a junior reporter in 1977 (as the original "Hock Lock Siew" of Business Times) to be the Editor of BT between 1986 and 1992. From May 1992 to the close of 1995, he was the Managing Editor of The Straits Times and Head of the Editorial Support Unit of the English/Malay newspapers of SPH.

soci said...

Ok. So it was merely one more of those 'Great Singapore Restructures'. Has anyone been restructured on to the street?

Grateful said...

I am sure most of us would like to see TODAY surpassing the Straits Times readership sooner.

TODAY is unarguably the lesser of the two evils. (we do not live in a perfect world, anyway).

I hope that the Research Company Nielson Media Research in their next survey do include in their questionaires HOW many of the respondents actually read the advertisements in each of the papers.

I can tell you from personal experience
which is shared by many of my colleagues is that NOT many read the adverts in the ST papers, maybe because of its large size and harder to hold the papers.

Like a reader once mentioned, usually the people will dispose of the ST Classified Ads Section and the other Section.

Many even ignore the Home page except to learn of accidents, tragedies, ...that affect the people in general.

As for me, the adverts in TODAY do catch my eye perhaps due to its Tabloid size.

On another point, it is so REFRESHING to read of readers' commentaries. It is a far cry from the patronising articles written in the ST esp when it comes to local news and issues. That is why many of us do not read them.

My congratulations and encouragement to the team at TODAY - past, present and future.

Anonymous said...

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Voyeur beobachtet Lolitas
Voyeur Movies und Voyeur Pics

Anonymous said...

IT seems that Mano was forced by the govt to sack Brown....

He too angry and leave liao.

Story end. True or not, up to you to believe.

Sunny said...

Shame on the Management of MediaCorps.

By the way, who is Lim Suat Jien, the MD of Mediacorp TV 12 ?

Anybody knows ?

Anyway, many of us do not watch MediaCorp!!

Anonymous said...

Here are some interesting facts

MediaCorp and TODAY want to build an information superhighway. But they do not know how to make themselves more credible. Fewer and fewer people are believing the govty linked newspapers and broadcasters these days. Credibility is going down by the day

TODAY says it is sets the reader thinking. Recent changes, such as sacking of the editor, MediaCorp and its units are actually trying to stop the people from getting the truth. They actually stop people thinking

TODAY should now change its slogan to "we STOP you thinking"

The people taking over at TODAY seem like sycophants. Balji left in 2003 to go and smell the roses but he has actually been smelling the govt recently, trying to win work from them.

He is now a spin doctor put into TODAY to make sure the votes come in in 2010 elections. He has little credibility after associating himself with TT Durai at NKF; flying first class etc. He milked NKF like Durai

Walter Fernandez is inexperienced and just a side-kick of Shaun Seow, the abuser whose wife got into trouble with the law in abusing a maid. He abuses his staff and is in a hurry to get rid of anyone who stands in the way

Mano, apparently a softie, hardened up in recent days and , according to staffers, tried to keep TODAY independent-minded. Shaun did not like that and took cues from his political masters to get rid of him.

Walter will try to get rid of other independent-minded journalists in TODAY. That will be a pity. TODAY will then be just like the ###### Times. Last few days, it is already not that different.

Walter is a chap who ##### in his own backyard. His girl friends have always been from the company where he works. He uses them and dumps them. No qualms about feeling etc, this chap. He has very low EQ

Overall, the media is in for ###### times. SPH is already tightly controlled and now TODAY IS MUZZLED.

The way to go for readers and intelligent thinking Singaporeans is to get their news on the internet, from blogs etc. Mainstream media is dead. MediaCorpis now MediaCorpse

Global said...

INTERNET is the MAINSTREAM Medium now.

PRINT MEDIA is DEAD, is what I think you (Anon 04:09) meant. :-)

(Mainstream media did not die. It is re-incarnated into another form - the Internet, and its blogging, millions of websites, ...and growing by the MILLIONS....definitely the Print media has NEVER seen such an exponential growth in the history of newspaper or printing).

And of course, MediaCorpse by its very name is DEAD all these years, with its undertakers.

Pl do a straw poll. I think many people these days watch cable or simply do not have the time to watch TV except for 'popular' programs like 'Singapore Idol'.
Suay!