RIP – KP Khoo, layout man
Khoo Kay Peng, 1944-2016
former production editor, New Straits Times
KP Khoo, a member of the founding editorial team of The Star and a back-room boy known within the Malaysian English-language press for his design and newspaper production skills, has died at the age of 72 at his home in Kuala Lumpur.
News of his death was reported by his brother, sports journalist Kay Soon, in a msssage to friends and former colleagues on Facebook.
As the first chief sub-editor of The Star, it was Kay Peng who had the distinction of producing the first front-page of Malaysia’s first tabloid newspaper and the first to be printed by the offset printing method. (See » The man who produced the first front page).
He had begun with Penang’s home-town newspaper, The Straits Echo, and had been recruited by the Malaysian edition of the Straits Times. Penang businessman KS Choong, the founder of The Star, approached him to help put together an editorial team and he left in August 1971, taking a couple of reporters and sub-editors from Balai Berita with him.
He served in various capacities with the Star, in its first home at Weld Quay, then at Pitt Street and later rejoined the New Straits Times, being responsible for the first major revamp of the paper under group editor Noordin Sopiee. In the mid-90s The Star, now big and rich, poached him for a revamp of its own which didn’t come about, and KP went back to Balai Berita. In his later years, KP took charge of the production of the Malaysian Reserve.