PETALING JAYA - The Star maintains its position as the country's number one English daily, according to the latest Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC) report.
Its average daily circulation increased to 339,162 in the second half of 2013. up 2.4 per cent or 8,042 copies from a year earlier.
The Star's circulation rose for both the print and digital formats. The digital replica saw a circulation of 49,551, up 17 per cent year-on-year.
Sunday Star also recorded an improved performance, with circulation growing 2.2 per cent, or 7,814 copies, to 341,963. The digital edition accounted for 49,737, up 19 per cent from a year earlier.
Star Publications (M) Bhd group chief marketing officer Angelina Villanueva said the demand for news on digital platforms was evident from the continued growth of the digital edition − ePaper.
"The Star bundle offer is a family package catered to satisfy demands of different individuals with preferences for different platforms," she said.
Meanwhile, Harian Metro retains the top spot among Bahasa Malaysia dailies but with a lower circulation. Its circulation slid 9.5 per cent, or 36,174 copies, to 343,840 in the second half of last year.
For the first time in at least two years, Mingguan Malaysia has overtaken Metro Ahad as the premier Bahasa weekly. Its circulation grew 1.9 per cent to 373,352 in 2013's second half while Metro Ahad's circulation fell 10.6 per cent to 362,807.
Among the Chinese newspapers, Sin Chew holds on to its pole position despite a 5.6 per cent drop in circulation to 381,864.
ABC chairman Karthi Palanisamy told StarBiz that the ABC figures reflected a "true and fair view" of a publication's reach in the marketplace.
They are audited and verified by certified public accounting firms, and are subsequently checked and verified by the audit committee comprising of non-publisher representatives from the industry.
On why the ABC introduced digital replica audits, he said with the availability of technology and much improved devices, many had moved to reading their daily newspapers on their mobile devices.
"For ABC Malaysia, the audit and authentication process for print and digital are kept separate which allows the 'user' of these audited figures to interpret and use them for their decision making process," he said.
While websites are not audited under digital replica audit, the ABC is developing a separate audit for websites known as ABC Interactive or ABCi.
The ABC is working closely with the Malaysian Digital Association, which had earlier appointed ComScore to verify traffic to websites. They have begun the process to verify ComScore's report.