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IPO sets stage for NoonTalk Media to execute regional growth plans

Candace Li
Candace Li • 9 min read
IPO sets stage for NoonTalk Media to execute regional growth plans
NoonTalk Media CEO Dasmond Koh is wellconnected in the entertainment industry across Asia / Photo: Albert Chua
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NoonTalk Media is a Singapore-based media entertainment company specialising in artiste and talent management, multimedia, film and drama production, and event conceptualisation and management. Carving out a niche in Chinese-language productions, the firm aims to be the city-state’s leading media agency, creating high-quality entertainment content to inspire a vibrant media landscape.

1. NoonTalk Media is a media entertainment provider. Could you elaborate on the products and services you provide for clients?

NoonTalk Media is a Singapore-based entertainment firm specialising in artiste and talent management, film and drama production, and event conceptualisation and management. It focuses on two key business segments:

• Management and events comprise services relating to the management of

(i) artistes and talent,

(ii) events and projects, and (iii) studio venue and equipment.

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• The production provides multimedia, film, television, and video production services.

2. What were some considerations for an initial public offering?

Embarking on an IPO allows NoonTalk Media to achieve its business strategies and the path for future growth. Specifically, through the IPO:

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• NoonTalk Media will be able to raise capital to pursue regional collaborations and explore new partnership opportunities across the Asia Pacific region, bolstering its existing offerings in producing dramas and movies. It will dedicate resources towards nurturing and expanding its portfolio of artistes to strengthen its market leadership position.

• The branding associated with a listed entity provides it with enhanced recognition and reputation, facilitating expansion through mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, and strategic investments when right.

3. What is the competitive edge for NoonTalk Media over your industry peers?

The firm possesses strong on-site capabilities spanning the entire entertainment value chain — artiste and talent management, multimedia, film and drama production, and event conceptualisation and management. Its comprehensive range of media production solutions, ability to adapt, expert industry knowledge, and strong industry relationship make it the company of choice for organisations looking for a service provider to deliver exceptional and out-of-the-box solutions. It is a one-stop service provider in the media production industry with the capability to offer end-to-end solutions encompassing both traditional and new media. It has handled over 200 live-stream shows, demonstrating its capability to adapt to changing trends.

The firm is helmed by a seasoned veteran in the local entertainment scene, CEO Dasmond Koh, who is well-connected in the entertainment industry across Asia. Some reputable clients includes Mediacorp, the People’s Association, and brands like Asics, Puma, Audi, and Marina Bay Sands.

NoonTalk Media’s comprehensive range of media production solutions, adaptability, industry expertise, and strong client relationships make them the go-to choice for those needing exceptional media production services.

4. Describe NoonTalk Media’s recent financial performance.

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NoonTalk Media’s 1H2023 ended Dec 31, 2022, revenue was $2 million, down 11% decline from the $2.2 million in 1H2022. This was primarily attributed to a dip in artiste engagement in the management and events segment. The resumption of live physical events in 1H2023 led to increased costs associated with using external vendors, decreasing the gross profit margin from 16.1% in 1H2022 to 9.5% in 1H2023.

Consequently, NoonTalk Media’s gross profit declined from $0.36 million in 1H2022 to $0.19 million in 1H2023. Excluding one-off listing and associated expenses of $1.5 million, NoonTalk Media’s net loss would have been $0.6 million in 1H2023, a 2% improvement over the previous corresponding period.

Following its successful IPO last year, NoonTalk Media’s net cash position stood at $5.5 million as at the end of 1H2023. This will provide the firm with the necessary capital to pursue regional collaborations and engage in other creative endeavours in the foreseeable future.

5. How has the IPO last year benefitted NoonTalk Media?

The company has benefited from the IPO funding process with net proceeds of $3.2 million, which will fund its growth initiatives like expanding the artiste and talent management business, investing in new production capabilities, developing new content formats and expanding into new markets.

NoonTalk Media has utilised around $1 million from its IPO proceeds to produce the movie The Chosen One, a collaboration with another Singapore production outfit, Oak3 Films. The company believes this project will extend its regional footprint and film and drama production leadership.

6. Are there plans to enhance the geographical reach of the business to generate greater revenue?

NoonTalk Media has established extensive relationships in China and Thailand. It will continue to explore collaborative partnerships and opportunities to expand its regional footprint across the Asia Pacific region. Such partnerships will include movie and drama collaborations to showcase NoonTalk Media’s pool of artistes to strengthen market leadership and bolster its service offerings.

In June 2022, NoonTalk Media co-produced the movie The Antique Shop with Thai production firm LeayDoDee Studio featuring artistes from Singapore, Korea, Indonesia and Thailand. It is also funding the production of The Chosen One, in collaboration with Oak3 Films and in partnership with Current Pictures (a renowned content creation and feature film company in Malaysia), featuring a cast from Singapore, Taiwan and Malaysia.

These collaboration efforts have allowed the company to achieve greater recognition and cultivate new relationships with key players in the television and film industry. NoonTalk Media also has plans to expand geographically through strategic acquisitions of overseas production and post-production companies.

7. What are some notable developments for NoonTalk Media in the medium term?

Engage in greater regional collaborations and expand regional artiste base to enhance branding: NoonTalk Media will explore new markets like Korea and Hong Kong to expand its market presence and capitalise on the increasing demand for comprehensive media services. NoonTalk Media aims to create new production opportunities and expand its portfolio of artistes by representing regional artistes from across the Asia Pacific region.

Inorganic growth through acquisitions and strategic investments: NoonTalk Media intends to drive long-term growth through strategic investments and acquisitions in production and post-production companies in Southeast Asia. The firm’s regional productions have led to discussions with other partners for potential investments and collaborations in the film, drama, event and concert space.

NoonTalk Media aims to diversify its operations by forging partnerships with companies in relevant industries, including meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions (MICE) events and concert promoters. Through such collaborations, NoonTalk Media hopes to extend its scope of service offerings and expand its geographical reach.

8. What are some risks that the business is facing or likely to face, and how are you mitigating them?

• Most of the company’s revenue comes from large-scale events and projects, usually awarded through a tender. There is no assurance that it will continue successfully bidding and securing contracts on similar terms through such a competitive process.

To mitigate this, NoonTalk Media is diversifying its client base, actively participating in tender bids, enhancing its competitive edge via innovation and quality service, and maintaining strong relationships with existing clients.

• Exceptional events, such as another disease outbreak, could cancel large-scale projects and adversely affect NoonTalk Media’s profitability. The company continues to hone its capability in new digital media to remain agile and adapt to changing circumstances and business environments.

• NoonTalk Media also relies on third-party distributors such as TV networks, video streaming and social media platforms to broadcast and distribute its media productions. This will also determine the commercial success of its productions.

If the company cannot obtain the necessary permission to broadcast on these platforms or influence a positive production release, this could have a material impact on its operations, financial condition and prospects. The company tries to mitigate this by constantly engaging with third-party platforms to establish a close working relationship and undertaking a strong marketing campaign to promote and publicise its productions.

9. Could you share some of the key environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors that are material to NoonTalk Media and how that can create long-term value for your stakeholders?

NoonTalk Media recognises the importance of environmental sustainability and has implemented strategies to reduce carbon footprint and adopt environmentally friendly practices. The firm uses motion sensor-controlled and energy-efficient lighting in its office and production facility. It also uses non-toxic, eco-friendly paint for its office. The firm strongly emphasises corporate social responsibility and is conscientious about undertaking projects with strong social impact.

Some examples include the company’s involvement in ChildAid 2020 and 2021 (a charity concert in aid of The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund and The Business Times Budding Artists Fund), which are a media partner for EnableAsia to promote awareness of dementia. NoonTalk Media strives to provide a fair and safe work environment and ensures its employees are treated with respect and integrity. It fosters the development and growth of an inclusive and multi-generational workplace by omitting an age-based hierarchy, ensuring everyone is empowered to deliver their best work.

10. What is NoonTalk Media’s value proposition to its shareholders and potential investors? What do you think investors have overlooked?

NoonTalk Media believes its value proposition to shareholders and potential investors extends beyond solely being an artiste management firm. While its artistes — being public figures — receive significant publicity, investors may have overlooked other aspects of the business, particularly its production and event management segments.

The company has demonstrated a strong growth track record, with its revenue increasing from $3 million in FY2020 to $6.4 million in FY2022. This translates to a CAGR of 44.7%, primarily driven by the production segment, which achieved a remarkable CAGR of 70.1% CAGR from FY2020 to FY2022.

The production segment is expected to continue its growth trajectory with regional projects in the company’s pipeline, positioning NoonTalk Media as a market leader in the Asia Pacific media, film, and entertainment industry. The Chosen One production represents a significant milestone in the company’s ability to capitalise on the media and entertainment industry trends.

NoonTalk Media is well-positioned to benefit from the growth of over-the-top (OTT) platforms enabled by 5G technology. According to Bonafide Research, the trend of 4K video streaming in OTT platforms is projected to have a CAGR of 15.7% from 2023 to 2028.

NoonTalk Media can leverage strategic partnerships, joint ventures, and acquisitions to tap into the large Chinese language media and entertainment OTT market (the Mandarin-speaking population is more than 1.2 billion in the Asia Pacific region).

Candace Li is a research analyst with the Singapore Exchange S68 -

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