Bashar Kiwan (16)


The global scandal of the Malaysian state investment fund, also known as 1Malaysia Development Bhd, or 1MDB, has had ramifications for the Syrian business community as well.


Syria’s last surviving classified weekly is reportedly closing as it falls victim of a decline in the advertising market, a switch to online media and a dispute between its owners.


Stagnant sales last year at Syria’s only large media group signal a still distressed media sector.


Syria’s largest media company had a turnover of less than 600 thousand dollars last year, a reflection of the impact of the war on the country’s companies.


For the first time since the beginning of the Syrian uprising, United Group, Syria’s largest media conglomerate, managed in the first of half of this year to stabilize its revenue stream.


United Group, Syria’s largest media group, saw a drop of 50 percent in its revenues last year according to preliminary filings.


United Group, Syria’s largest media group, saw a massive drop in revenues last year over the contraction of the advertising market.


The revenues of United Group, Syria’s largest media company, plunged 65 percent year-on-year in the first nine months of 2012 amidst a slump in the advertising market.


Bashar Kiwan bought a large part of the United Group shares that were traded last week in the Syrian bourse, according to a local press report.


The index of the Damascus Stock Exchange remained unchanged in four out of the last six sessions; although a large deal on United Group stocks raised trading volumes to levels not reached in months.


Revenues continued to plunge at UG, Syria’s largest media group, as the industry suffers from the economic downturn.


UG, Syria’s largest media group, reported a loss of SYP 45 million in its 2011 fiscal year amid a steep decline in revenues and a stricken media sector.

Revenues from billboard advertising represented half of the net revenues of United Group, Syria’s largest media group, according to the company’s audited financial results.
United Group has launched an English language daily, Baladna English.

Shares owned by the two largest shareholders of United Group, and also board members, have been temporarily suspended by the Damascus Securities Exchange following a decision by a local court.


United Group, Syria's largest media firm, posted a 27 percent increase in its 2008 turnover.