By TIMOTHY CHARLTON
MING Pao Enterprises, publisher of the Ming Pao newspaper, has sold its recently launched tabloid Hong Kong Today to group chairman Yu Pun-hoi.
Mr Yu will buy Hong Kong Today for $30 million and will assume responsibility for a $60 million loan due to Ming Pao.
Ming Pao will still be left with a consolidated loss of $5.2 million after the sale.
The move is widely seen by analysts as a move to get the loss-making tabloid off Ming Pao's balance sheet to help revive the company's share price.
Company secretary Hui Hau-tung said the start-up had made a $63 million loss since its incorporation.
''In view of its present capital deficiency and the fact that it is unlikely to make any positive contribution to the operating results of the group in the foreseeable future, the directors believe [the sale will improve] the overall financial position and operating performance of the group.'' he said.