Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) has followed up its investment in restaurant booking site Chope with a deal to buy SG Car Mart, one of Singapore’s top online auto trading companies, for SG$60 million, which is around US$48.5 million.
In a notice announced on April 1 — which wasn’t one of the plethora of tech companies’ April fool gags — SPH revealed that the deal to buy 100 percent of the startup’s shares in cash had been secured following “arm’s length negotiations”.
The agreement sees SPH — a media conglomerate that employs more than 4,000 staff and is listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange — take ownership of car loan and insurance site SG Car Mart, used car sales service Quotz and SGCM’s 30 percent stake in Conversion Hub Marketing.
SGE says that SG Car Mart’s valuation is twelve times higher than its revenue during 2012. It has been suggested that STCars, SPH’s own competing service, may merge with SG Car Mart, but that is unclear for now.
SG Car Mart expanded into Indonesia, as it dipped its toes in the lucrative but heavily fragmented Southeast Asian region. SPH has shown interest in promising startups that are expanding in the region, and it recently partnered with Thailand-based e-publishing firm Ookbee, which is growing its presence in new markets.
Print media is SPH’s core business and the group publishes 18 newspapers and more than 100 magazines across Southeast Asia. It claims a cumulative daily readership of 2.92 million.
Headline image via luca85 / Shutterstock