GEM COMM RESEARCH: The Government has come up a generous budget consisting of rebates, bridging loans and cash payouts to help Singaporeans and businesses during this uncertain times. This Budget is also seen by many as a sweetener for the election-year budget, which is anticipated to be in 2020. We did a GE comparison of the 2015 vs 2020 budget (table below) for your reference.

With the COVID-19 outbreak expected to have a much greater impact than the 2003 SARS pandemic, will these measures be enough?

While Singapore managed to recover strongly following the SARS outbreak to expand 4.5% in 2003. The economy still shrank sharply by 4.2% yoy during the April-June quarter (Singapore’s first case of SARS was detected in March 2003, with the outbreak being contained by May 2003). The world is also a much different place compared to 2003.

Prior to the outbreak, China is struggling with its lowest economic growth in 30 years as the world’s second largest economy expanded only 6.1% in 2019. This is compared to 2003 where the Chinese economic system is growing at a rapid 9.1%, a 7-year high. China’s economic influence over the world and Singapore has also risen significantly since 2003 from 4% of global GDP to about 20%. China is also currently Singapore’s largest non-oil export destination, at 17.3% of the Singapore’s overall exports.

The generous budget is well-received and will provide some relief to Singaporeans and businesses, nonetheless it is expected to be a uphill road ahead for some industries in MICE, Aviation and Tourism.

Can the smaller players survive this phase?

Have faith and walk the miles!

Link to pdf

Access: GEM E-News 19- Cinemas

Entertainment- Cinemas, Exhibition, Concerts… Cinemas voted as an inexpensive form of entertainment. People who love movies, like us, will tell you that watching a movie in a cinema is preferable than at home- the audio-visual impact, as well as the societal experience of watching with your friends or complete strangers as a collective group make going to a cinema unique and magical.

The plethora of viewing options at home—from streaming video to cable TV (especially the addiction of watching series like Game of Thrones and Grey’s Anatomy in your fav pyjamas)—mean that bricks and mortar cinemas are facing a battle to attract audiences?

Fundamentally the cinema business is not about selling a ticket to a movie, it’s about selling the popcorns and experience. We see cinemas being much more attentive in changes in people’s taste, from more high-end food offerings, premium beverage offerings and luxurious seats. We all need the “excuse” of a date-night with our loved ones and friends.

This year, China wrapped up the first six days of the Chinese New Year with a record-breaking 5.8 billion ($860 million) yuan box office, according to data collected by Maoyan, Alibaba’s movie ticketing service slated for an initial public offering.

Alibaba (NYSE:BABA)- the Chinese e-commerce king has taken a 7.7% ownership stake in Wanda Film Holding, the movie unit of Dalian Wanda Group. Wanda owns top U.S. movie theatre chain AMC Entertainment (NYSE:AMC) with over 1,000 theatres and 11,000 screens across the globe.

In 2018, the total number of screens in China reached 60,079, up 18% over the previous year. This meant that more than 9,000 screens were added in 2018. So far this year, the trend has continued, with the building of 511 additional cinemas boasting over 3,200 screens.