Star says closing 15-year-old Penang plant to cut cost

Debra Chong

KUALA LUMPUR, May 21 — The Star Media Group Bhd announced today that it is stopping all printing activities in its plant in Bayan Lepas, Penang starting September as a cost-cutting exercise.

Started in 1971 as a regional English-language newspaper in Penang, the media group said the closure of the plant, built in 2003, will involve laying off redundant staff, disposing its pressline and a review of the land and building.

“The Board of Directors of Star, after having considered all aspects of the Proposed Cessation, is of the opinion that the Proposed Cessation is in the best interest of the Group,” the MCA-linked company said in a statement to Bursa Malaysia.

“The Proposed Cessation is not subject to the approval of the shareholders and any relevant government authorities,” it added.

It also said it does not foresee the Penang plant closure to affect its circulation in the north as its printing and newspaper publication business will still continue at the main plant in Shah Alam, Selangor.

The Star’s shares plummeted to RM1 on May 16, a week after the upset victory by Pakatan Harapan over the Barisan Nasional coalition to which MCA belongs.

The media company’s stocks were valued at RM1.10 at the close of markets today, with 3.46 million shares traded.