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SPH marks 30th anniversary with birthday concert at Victoria Concert Hall

Singapore, 4 August 2014 – Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) celebrated its 30th anniversary with a special birthday concert by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) this afternoon at Victoria Concert Hall (VCH). 

The lunchtime concert, which was part of the SPH Gift of Music series, was the first free public concert by the national orchestra at the newly renovated VCH. The new concert hall opened its doors to the public in July 2014, after four years of refurbishment. 

Under the baton of Associate Conductor Jason Lai,  SSO kicked off the celebration concert with Carillon de Westminister, an organ piece by French composer Louis Vierne. It was a rare occasion for the audiences to hear the Klais Organ at VCH being played. The organ, which has a total of 2,012 pipes, formed the majestic facade of the concert hall stage. 

Other highlights of the 45-minute programme included popular classics such as Voices of Spring by Johann Strauss, Salut D'Amor by Edward Elgar, and movie themes from West Side Story and Star Wars. In celebration of the upcoming National Day, the audiences were also treated to local compositions such as Sketches of Singapore by Kelly Tang and Home by Dick Lee. 

Close to 700 people enjoyed the free concert, including more than 100 staff from SPH. Apart from the musical treat, there was a cake cutting ceremony by Dr Lee Boon Yang, Chairman of SPH; Mr Alan Chan, Chief Executive Officer of SPH, and SPH directors.  The audience was each given a slice of birthday cake to commemorate the special occasion. 

Today (4 August) marks the day SPH was incorporated 30 years ago, through a merger of three organisations - the Straits Times Press group, the Singapore News and Publications Limited and Times Publishing Berhad which was later de-merged from SPH in 1988. The merger brought together the English, Malay and Chinese newspapers under one roof. SPH later also bought Tamil Murasu Pte Ltd. 

While SPH is three decades old, its publications have a much longer history. The Straits Times turns 170 next year and Lianhe Zaobao just celebrated its 90th anniversary last year. Berita Harian has more than 50 years of history, while Tamil Murasu marks its 80th birthday next year.  

Besides the SPH 30th Anniversary Concert, there was a series of activities this year to celebrate SPH's 30th anniversary. In March this year, SPH launched its 30th anniversary celebrations with a special concert by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra at Paragon. The SPH Lucky 30 Draw from March to May attracted over 30,000 participants with $88,000 worth of prizes. There was a groundbreaking ceremony for the SPH Walk of Giants at the Singapore Botanic Gardens in April.  In May, SPH staff and external charities set up more than 30 stalls to raise funds for different causes at the SPH Charity Carnival 2014.  Last month, SPH organised See The Big Picture, which saw British artist and autistic savant drew the Singapore skyline from memory at Paragon. In the same month, there was a topping up ceremony for The Seletar Mall, SPH's latest property development.

Please see attached SPH 30th Anniversary calendar of events.

Issued by Singapore Press Holdings Ltd
Co. Regn. No. 198402868E

For more information, please contact:

Ms Chin Soo Fang
Corporate Communications & CSR
Singapore Press Holdings
Tel: 6319 1216

Mobile: 9688 6209

Mr Francis Mah
Senior Manager
Corporate Communications & CSR
Singapore Press Holdings
Tel: 6319 1028


About Singapore Press Holdings Ltd

Incorporated in 1984, main board-listed Singapore Press Holdings Ltd (SPH) is Asia’s leading media organisation, engaging minds and enriching lives across multiple languages and platforms.

Newspapers, Magazines and Book Publishing
SPH has 19 titles licensed under the Newspaper Printing and Presses Act, of which nine are daily newspapers across four languages. On an average day, 3.05 million individuals or 76 per cent of people above 15 years old, read one of SPH's news publications. SPH also publishes and produces more than 100 magazine titles in Singapore and the region, covering a broad range of interests from lifestyle to information technology. SPH's subsidiaries, Straits Times Press and Focus Publishing, produce quality books and periodicals in English and Chinese.

Internet and Mobile
Beyond print, SPH's suite of digital products includes online editions of newspapers and magazines, as well as mobile applications. Our online products enjoy 360 million page views with 23 million unique browsers every month. Apart from AsiaOne, SPH’s online and new media initiatives include ST701, the leading online marketplace for jobs (STJobs), property (STProperty), cars (STCars) and general classifieds (STClassifieds); Stomp, and SPH Razor. SPH also launched The Straits Times’ iPad and enhanced iPhone applications, an Android smartphone application and The Business Times’ iPhone application. SPH’s Chinese flagship newspaper Lianhe Zaobao has also launched its digital editions which include a web application, as well as online and PDF versions. The Malay language-daily Berita Harian has apps for both iPhones and Android smartphones and iPads, offering both native and PDF formats, and an online version.

In the radio business, SPH Radio Pte Ltd operates entertainment stations UFM 100.3 in Mandarin, as well as Kiss92 and HOT FM91.3 in English. SPH has a 20 per cent stake in MediaCorp TV Holdings Pte Ltd, which operates free-to-air channels 5, 8 and U, and a 40 per cent stake in MediaCorp Press Limited, which publishes the free newspaper, Today.

Events and Out-of-Home Advertising
SPH’s events arm Sphere Exhibits organises innovative consumer and trade events and exhibitions as well as large scale conferences in Singapore and the region. In addition, SPH has ventured into out-of-home (OOH) advertising through its digital out-of-home platform SPHMBO.

SPH REIT is a Singapore-based REIT established principally to invest, directly or indirectly, in a portfolio of income-producing real estate which is used primarily for retail purposes in Asia-Pacific, as well as real estate-related assets. SPH REIT is managed by SPH REIT Management Pte. Ltd., which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Singapore Press Holdings Limited.

The initial portfolio of SPH REIT comprises the following two high quality and well located commercial properties in Singapore:

· Paragon, a premier upscale retail mall and medical suite/office property, well known for its upscale mall housing many luxury brands, located in the heart of Orchard Road; and
· The Clementi Mall, a mid-market suburban mall located in the centre of Clementi town, an established residential estate in the west of Singapore.

The Seletar Mall is SPH's latest retail development and is expected to open at the end of 2014. This property is a potential asset to be injected into SPH REIT. SPH’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Times Development Pte Ltd, also developed a 43-storey upmarket residential condominium, Sky@eleven, at Thomson Road.

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