SINGAPORE - Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) has won a total of three awards at this year's PANPA Awards held in Sydney, Australia.
The awards were presented by the Pacific Area Newspaper Publishers' Association or PANPA, a not-for-profit association founded in 1969 with a vision of engaging, inspiring, and raising the standards of newspapers. Its membership is made up of newspaper companies in Australia and New Zealand, plus most English-language newspapers in South-East Asia and the South Pacific.
PANPA Newspaper of the Year Awards
The 2013 PANPA Newspaper of the Year Awards focus on newspapers, digital platforms, photography, marketing and excellence in print and production. This year, organisers received almost 1,000 entries from Singapore, Fiji, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Australia.
The Straits Times Appreciates Readers (Star) programme won the best "Newspaper event" award for newspapers in the 90,000+ circulation category, beating competitors like Australia's The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald. The Straits Times is SPH's English language flagship newspaper.
The Star programme was launched last year to deepen the newspaper's engagement with its readers and the community. The initiative kicked off with a concert at Gardens by the Bay on 15 July last year. Since then, readers have been treated to movie previews, special access to the panda exhibit at Wildlife Reserves Singapore and exclusive parties at the Social Star Awards and Singapore Social Concerts. Last Sunday, The Straits Times also held its first ST Run at the Punggol Waterway, attracting 12,000 runners.
The Straits Times also picked up another win for its first e-book, Myanmar Sunrise. Myanmar Sunrise was the winner of the "Specialty/Niche Sites and Niche Apps" category under the Digital News Destination of the Year section.
The Straits Times' Foreign Desk, including Indochina Bureau Chief Nirmal Ghosh and a team of writers and photographers, captured the story of Myanmar's awakening in this 150-page interactive book launched earlier this year. The Straits Times' Asia Report microsite was a finalist in the same category.
Mr Warren Fernandez, Editor of The Straits Times, said: "Our Straits Times Appreciates Readers (Star) programme is our way of rewarding our loyal readers. Winning this award from our peers in the newspaper industry in the Pacific region is a big boost, and will spur us to do more to build on this programme. Our readers will be the biggest winner as a result."
"Our first e-book, Myanmar Sunrise, was a part of our ongoing effort to transform our newsroom into a truly multi-media outfit, able to deliver content not only in print, but also on mobile devices like the IPad. If you have not seen it, do check it out on the Itunes store. It tells an engaging story, in words, visuals and videos, on the remarkable transformation taking place in Myanmar. We will keep on developing our ability to bring interesting content to our readers wherever they are and anyway they want it," Mr Fernandez added.
These awards were handed out at the Grand Ballroom of the Four Seasons Hotel in Sydney, Australia, on Thursday (29 August) evening.
The Straits Times was also a finalist in the following categories.
PHOTOGRAPHY OF THE YEAR
Portrait of the Year (National / Metropolitan)
- Desmond Wee: "Para Swimmer"
- Jamie Koh: "Eye on Anatomy" Features
Photography of the Year (National / Metropolitan)
- Alphonsus Chern: "Water Dance" Sports
Photography of the Year (National / Metropolitan)
- Mugilan Rajasegeran: "Fencing Olympics"
DIGITAL NEWS DESTINATION OF THE YEAR
News Website (National / Metropolitan)
- One ST
PANPA Ad Awards
On 28 August, also at the Four Seasons Hotel, the 2013 PANPA Ad Awards were presented, and SPH won an award for the PRINT - Best Advertisement / Campaign Promoting Print In A Trade Publication Or As An In-House Ad (Circulation 90,000+) for the SPH iink Awards 2013 "Alice in Wonderland" campaign.
The "Alice in Wonderland" campaign depicted the advertising industry as a fantasy world where the best creative ideas came to life and were celebrated. Using prominent industry practitioners as models, the Creative Director was depicted by the Hatter, the Client by the Queen of Hearts and the Media Director by the White Rabbit.
The campaign was executed in print, online, during events such as promotional visits to agencies, and culminated in a grand finale - the awards presentation. The response from the creative industry this year to the SPH iink Awards was better than last year. The idea came from Senior Designer Ahmad Sadali and Copywriter Caroline Chew.
Mr Tommy Lim, Head of Creative Services and Product Branding and Promotions, Marketing Division, SPH, said: "It is a really satisfying win as we fought through a lot of obstacles to make the campaign happen and spent a lot of time crafting the ads to ensure the best creative representation. It was teamwork at its best as despite the tight deadline, we kept improving on the art direction and copywriting to bring out the flavour in the most creative and effective way."
SPH was also named a finalist in three other categories in the Print section of the awards and one in the Craft section. They are:
PRINT - Best single advertisement for a client (Circ. 90,000+)
- Singapore Business Awards - "Feather"
PRINT - Best print campaign for a client (Circ. 90,000+)
- Maybank - "Gold"
- Si Chuan Dou Hua Restaurant - "Painting"
PRINT - Best advertising feature or supplement - can include editorial-driven environment (Circ. 90,000+)
- Lion Corporation Singapore 30th Anniversary CRAFT (OPEN)
Best photograph or illustration
- SPH iink Awards Launch Ad