SPH officially launches Money FM89.3 to fill ‘gap’ in business radio market

Singapore Press Holdings has gone live with its newest radio station today in a bid to plug “a gap” in the airwaves’ business and finance content.

‘The insights business’ –
SPH’s Money FM 89.3 goes live

The media company has launched the English-language station Money FM89.3, which will cover business-related news and analysis from Asia.

Another radio station, the Chinese-language 96.3好FM, also launched earlier this month.

SPH’s pivot to radio comes following a troubled period for the company; last year its media business saw 42-per cent fall in profit and the axing of more than 200 jobs.

Speaking to Mumbrella about SPH’s decision to invest in a traditional medium, SPH Radio general manager Sim Hong Huat said: “We did some market research and the the number of listeners to radio has been pretty stable over the last few years, so we see that there’s still a lot of potential in radio as a platform. In the market, there’s a gap we can fill that is not quite served.”

Money FM’s launch follows a recent rebrand by rival media giant Mediacorp of its station 938LIVE. The station, now known as 938NOW, was recently given a more business and finance focus in its content lineup, alongside other subjects such as parenting, food, technology, leisure, sports and travel.

According to Sim, 938NOW’s remains “very much a general station”, while Money FM will be more specialised, although it will include discussions on health, education and music, in addition to business. 

Sim added that the station already had several advertisers, including Ameritrade, Subaru and Canon, lined up on long-term contracts, while investment from other brands was strong.

While the “pillar” of the station’s content will be harvested from The Straits Times and The Business Times – which recently saw their individual news teams merged during SPH’s restructure – Sim said there will be original analyses and interviews commissioned by Money FM’s production team.

Although, Sim said Money FM would have a healthy audience from traditional airwave listeners, as well as commuters using the station’s app, the choice to launch a new radio portal appears at odds with recent comments made by SPH’s chief executive officer Ng Yat Chung.

Speaking at SPH’s last AGM, he said the company would have to “convert… to the insights business in digital”.

He added: “A lot of our investment have gone towards a digital first strategy and digital subscriptions.”


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