Alan Soon leaves Yahoo to set up newsroom consultancy



Alan Soon, the managing editor of Yahoo Southeast Asia and India, has left the company after almost six years to set up his own newsroom consultancy.

Called The Splice Newsroom, the Singapore-based consultancy aims to help newsrooms keep up with the quickening news cycle and changes in technology.

Soon told Mumbrella: “I started this because I see a real problem in the media industry: newsrooms are struggling to keep up with the constant change brought on by the digital shift.”

“Newsroom managers are keen to transform and adapt their teams but they struggle in figuring out where to start and how to keep evolving,” he said.

The service is available for brand owners as well as news organisations, tapping into the emerging trend of brands becoming real-time content producers. Philips, with its ‘Conversation engine’, and MasterCard with the ‘Priceless engine’, are two brands to set up in-house newsrooms in Asia in recent months.

“I also want to help marketers and agencies build similar capabilities. There’s plenty of room here to help establish editorial values and workflows within the scope of content marketing,” he said.

The Splice Newsroom focuses on four key areas: people, culture, tools and workflow, Soon explained. The first two are focused on the soft skills needed to set the right context for teams to innovate and evolve. The second two deal with getting the right tools and operational workflow in place so the teams can do their job.

“My heart is with the operational needs of teams – what do they need to get the job done? This is often missing as the industry focuses on building the “business” as a whole,” he said.

Soon joined Yahoo in 2009 from CNBC where he was a senior producer.

He started his career in journalism in Singapore, where he worked as a reporter and producer for Channel NewsAsia. He has also worked at IDG News Service and Star TV in Hong Kong, and Bloomberg and Kyodo News in Japan.

Soon is part of a team that set up the Online News Association in Singapore with former Yahoo colleagues Janie Octia and Asha Phillips last month.


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