29 July 2014

Is SPH a Leaky Tap?

"Drip, drip, drip" went my toilet spray (of the toilet bowl). Kinda make me wish for the Japanese type of toilet bowls. All that high  - who needs a spray!?  But alas, this is Singapore. So a spray it is.

The usual suspect as always was a worn out rubber washer. But it seems to be really hard to find one these days. It used to be easy to get one from those old musky and dark looking hardware stores. But these seem to have gone the way of the dodo bird. Old trade, hard to survive.

Looking at the stocks I own, I wonder if any fall into this category of old trade that is on their way out?


Newspapers are still being read, magazines are being bought, even if many are also being seduced by electronic media.  Personally, I'm still a hardcopy guy and would rather read the printed sheets and magazines. Less damaging for my ageing eyes.

ROA (%) 13.10 13.64 9.45 12.52 7.32
ROE (%) 20.36 23.26 17.43 19.44 11.94
DPS (SGD) 0.1600 0.1600 0.1600 0.1600 0.1500
EPS (SGD) 0.2616 0.3085 0.2402 0.3549 0.2656
[Source: POEMS, dated 29 Jul 2014]

SPH should do well with a growing and educated population. Unfortunately, with the population growth tapering off and ageing, probably not going to see much growth there.

Advertisers? They will go where the readers are. The draw of Internet of Things is drawing them away. Too seductive to ignore. So it bodes well that SPH is diversifying itself into the Internet space, buying a string of companies in this realm.

At the same time, SPH has diversified by going into development of commercial properties, making use of its cash hoard. A shopping mall in the city and a couple more in the heartlands. Guess its aim is to secure a stream of regular income from these properties. It has always been seen as a steady dividend champion and this is possibly one way to preserve its dividend stream even as it makes the structural shift from pure print to a mix of print and electronic businesses.

Will it survive the transition and continue to be a strong dividend machine with positive long term growth potentials?

A leaky spray can still be fixed. All it needs is a new rubber. *blink blink*

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