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SPH, StarHub renew strategic partnership with potential healthcare, retail, education tie-ups

SINGAPORE Press Holdings (SPH) and telco StarHub have renewed their strategic partnership for another two years, and will explore working together in areas such as healthcare, retail and education.

The move was announced on Monday afternoon, as the two companies' heads inked a fresh memorandum of understanding (MOU), to follow an agreement in 2016.

The new partnership areas come on top of their collaboration in advertising sales, content creation and distribution, data analytics and marketing - all of which is set to continue.

Both mainboard-listed companies cited the intention to "jointly create services in sectors other than the media industry", according to a statement.

The deal will see StarHub provide its connectivity and digital solutions to not just SPH but also its affiliates, which include Orange Valley Healthcare and Han Language Centre.

Media and property group SPH has investments in the private education business and in 2017 bought over Orange Valley, Singapore's largest private nursing home operator.

Under the renewed MOU, it will partner StarHub to look into working together on the Internet of Things, as well as connected buildings and smart retail.

They will also continue their efforts to develop advertising and branding opportunities on multiple media platforms, and will expand in their bundled subscription drives with more joint rewards initiatives.

Meanwhile, StarHub - which now broadcasts and promotes SPH productions on its pay-TV service - will carry SPH content on its online streaming service as well.

It will also cross-carry and promote content with existing and upcoming SPH radio stations - for example, possible adaptations of media from either platform.

Tan Tong Hai, the outgoing chief executive at StarHub, said in off-the-cuff remarks before the MOU signing at StarHub Green: "As I think about our TV channels, the content that we have and the content that you have - if we put this together, I would say that we are able to engage our clients better."

He also pointed to small and medium-sized enterprises as a potential growth segment for media and digital technology offerings.

SPH chief executive officer Ng Yat Chung, in a statement, called the partnership with StarHub - which began before he took office in September 2017 - "a fruitful partnership".

"Our renewal of this strategic partnership will enable us to continue to leverage on each other's strengths and channels to create new business opportunities for both companies, as well as benefit consumers in Singapore," Mr Ng added. "I think our businesses are both facing a different degree of disruption. We can't do it on our own," Mr Ng said at the MOU signing.

Mr Tan also said in a statement that the fresh MOU "takes our partnership to the next level by breaking new ground in non-media collaboration".

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