Utusan Melayu saves RM3m with new office
KUALA LUMPUR, May 26 — Utusan Melayu (Malaysia) Bhd expects to save about RM3 million in operational costs, especially on maintenance and rental, with the move to its new headquarters building in 2013.
The seven-storey building is being constructed opposite the group’s existing office in Jalan Chow Sow Lin here, on land, previously used as a parking lot for its staff.
“We can save a lot from this new building and thus have the capacity to repay our loans,” Executive Chairman, Tan Sri Mohamed Hashim Ahmad Makaruddin told reporters after Utusan’s annual general meeting (AGM) here today.
The RM90 million building will accommodate a major section of the 72-year old newspaper’s staff in the Klang valley, including several subsidiaries.
Mohamed Hashim said the development of the new office will be funded via RM70 million in bank borrowings and RM20 million from internal funds.
On the future outlook, he said the group will continue to focus on its core business segments, particularly in newspapers and books, while seeking to improve its leadership.
“We want to focus more on our tabloid newspaper, KOSMO, which recorded a high revenue of about RM183 million last year. We will also continue to improve content and layout of the Utusan Melayu,” he added.
He said Utusan is continuously looking for new potential businesses, especially in information technology.
“We will continue to monitor closely our operational costs and embark on initiatives that will generate more revenue this year, despite the stiff competition from other local newspapers,” he explained.
For the first quarter ended March 31, 2010, Utusan posted a pre-tax loss of RM6.5 million compared with a pre-tax loss of RM8.7 million in the same quarter last year.
Revenue fell to RM74.8 million from RM79.5 million previously, due mainly to a decline in advertising contribution. — Bernama