PETALING JAYA: Rimbunan Hijau group founder and chairman Tan Sri Tiong Hiew King has taken control of Nanyang Press Holdings Bhd through his private company, Ezywood Options Sdn Bhd.
Ezywood Options paid RM64.7mil to acquire Huaren Management Sdn Bhd's 21.02% stake in the Chinese newspaper at RM4.20 per share on Oct 9.
Ezywood Options now owns 44.76% of Nanyang and will be required to extend a mandatory takeover offer for the remaining shares of Nanyang it does not already own.
Tiong said in a statement yesterday he was privileged to be associated with the development of Nanyang Siang Pau and other publications within the Nanyang group.
I have been involved in the continued growth of Ming Pao in Hong Kong and Northern America, Yazhou Zhoukan and Sin Chew Media Group.
My colleagues and I resolved once again to invest in this newspaper group, (which) reaffirms our conviction that Chinese newspapers contribute to the advancement of culture.
He said Rimbunan Hijau group hoped to continue expanding the Chinese media industry, and establishing a Chinese language media network centred around the Chinese community.
Tiong said the Chinese language media companies needed a strong group power to compete with its peers in the era of globalisation and trade liberalisation.
With technology advancing at an explosive rate, the traditional Chinese media industry finds itself in a competitive environment.
The Chinese newspaper industry must move in tandem with the trends and explore new avenues of sustained development to stay in business, he added.
In his statement, Tiong referred to a prevailing trend involving the competition co-existence of editorial constituents that operated independently of each other and unleashing their respective strengths to cater to their readers.
Such competition helps accentuate the competitiveness of all the constituents within the group. By doing so, the destructive cut-throat rivalry is avoided and a 'win-win' situation will be in place,'' he added.
Nanyang Siang Pau was founded by the late Tan Kah Kee on Sept 6, 1923 in Singapore.
In 1993, Nanyang Press took over the management of another Chinese daily, China Press.
On May 28, 2001, Huaren Holdings, the investment arm of MCA, bought over Nanyang Press in a controversial transaction that led to a mass boycott of the newspaper by the Chinese community.