Tue. May 28th, 2024

Singapore’s largest news publisher, SPH Media, has announced its plans to acquire homegrown startup and tech news outlet Tech in Asia (TIA) today (November 1).

Through the acquisition, SPH Media looks to strengthen its news offerings, in particular that of its financial news publication, The Business Times (BT). This is part of the group’s efforts to increase their reader demographics across Southeast Asia and accelerate its goal of becoming a regional player for business and tech news, and events. In the longer term, TIA will support SPH Media’s broader transformation efforts. 

Meanwhile, with the support of SPH Media’s extensive networks and resources, TIA also expects to strengthen its mission to serve the tech and startup community in Asia.

Our mission to serve the tech and startup community in Asia will only grow stronger with the support of SPH Media’s extensive networks and resources. We’re committed to continuing our high-quality content and events, aligning perfectly with SPH Media’s goals to build the leading business title in APAC.

– Willis Wee, CEO and founder of Tech in Asia (TIA)

According to Wong Wei Kong, the Editor-in-Chief for English/Malay/Tamil Media Group at SPH Media, the acquisition is a strategic move that will provide both TIA and BT readers with a more comprehensive suite of products and services. “By coming together with their strengths and capabilities, BT and TIA present an exciting business proposition in Asia, centred on good journalism,” he said.

The acquisition of TIA is subject to customary closing conditions, and is expected to close by the end of 2023. TIA will remain an independent outfit post acquisition.

Left to right: Chen Huifen, editor of Business Times; Maria Li, COO of Tech in Asia; Wong Wei Kong, editor-in-chief of English/Malay/Tamil Media Group, SPH Media; Willis Wee, CEO of Tech in Asia; Terence Lee, editor-in-chief of Tech in Asia / Image credit: SPH Media

Tech in Asia was founded in 2010 by Willis Wee, who serves as its CEO. It has about 90 staff based in Singapore, Indonesia and other parts of Asia. It also runs its annual flagship event – the Tech in Asia Conference.

The Singapore based company raised US$6.6 million in funding back in November 2017, bringing the total funding raised to over US$13 million.

Following that in October 2018, Tech in Asia launched its subscription service where readers can pay a monthly subscription to access paywall-ed articles.

In a note by founder Willis Wee following the news of the acquisition, Willis also shared that being part of SPH Media will “provide them with more stability, resources, and an environment to thrive”.

“Additionally, this deal offers liquidity for our shareholders, some who have patiently fought alongside us for over a decade. It’ll reward past and present employees who’ve built Tech in Asia to what it is today.”

Featured Image: SPH Media

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