Bell Atlantic joint venture company
publishes its first directory in Greece
Comprehensive shopping guide for Athens residents
September 10, 1998
MIDDLETON, Mass. -- Bell Atlantic Information Services Hellas, a joint
venture company owned by Global Directory Services Company, a leading
international publisher of shopping directories headquartered in Middleton, Mass.,
and ICAP, Greece's largest financial and business information company, today
began distributing its first shopping directory for Athens, Greece, to more than
260,000 area residents.
Called the Bell Atlantic SuperGuide, it marks Bell Atlantic's entry into the Greek
directory publishing industry. It is the first of eight editions Bell Atlantic
Information Services Hellas will distribute in the country.
Established last year to publish directories outside the United States, Global
Directory Services is a joint venture company of Bell Atlantic, the world's largest
publisher of Yellow Pages shopping directories, and R.R. Donnelley & Sons
Company, one of the world's leading commercial printers.
"Bell Atlantic brings to the partnership more than 100 years of shopping directory
leadership, expertise and experience, as well as a shared commitment to promoting
business development and commerce for the people of Greece," said Mat Stover,
chairman of Global Directory Services and group president of Bell Atlantic
In addition to Greece, Global Directory Services has operations in China, Poland,
Gibraltar and the Czech and Slovak republics, and plans to publish more than 7.5
million directories in some 80 editions this year. Global Directory Services
Company has more than 1,700 employees worldwide.
Bell Atlantic Information Services Hellas' first Greek directory was unveiled at a
ceremony held yesterday evening at the new Athens Metro station. As the Metro
aims to make the lives of Athens residents easier, the Bell Atlantic SuperGuide,
the English translation of the name of the book, is designed to make life easier for
The shopping directories contain useful information to simplify the daily life of
Athenians. For example, the Community Pages and Introductory Pages include
information regarding culture, recreation, archeological sites, maps,
transportation, open markets, international and national area codes and emergency
numbers. The new directory also contains a Blue Pages section with pertinent
listings including government agencies and organizations, schools, police stations,
and tax offices in each region. The traditional Yellow Pages section will include
advertising and listings for more than 40,000 businesses and professionals
conveniently organized by business heading.
"Bell Atlantic Information Services Hellas will provide the consumers and
businesses in Greece with the most comprehensive shopping guide, including all
the information they need, right at their fingertips," said Ken Marks, president -
Global Directory Services. "Our goal in the Greek marketplace is to make it easier
for shoppers to find what they need and for businesses to reach all members of the
community. Through our directories, we will connect buyers of anything with
sellers of everything."
In addition to the Athens Center consumer directory, Bell Atlantic Information
Services Hellas will publish five others for the Athens, Piraeus, and Thessaloniki
regions and two business-to-business editions for greater Athens and Thessaloniki.
The business-to-business guides will be delivered only to businesses and will focus
on advertising for companies that market their products and services directly to
other companies. "We are extremely pleased to be partnered with ICAP in Greece,
an experienced publisher of finance and business information directories," said
Marks. "Together, we will promote commerce and economic growth in Greece
with top quality shopping directories for both consumers and businesses."
In creating the new directory for Athens, Bell Atlantic Information Services Hellas
applied its expertise in shopping directory marketing, sales, design and production,
customizing the success of Bell Atlantic and R.R. Donnelley in the United States
to new cultures and markets, as has been done in Poland, Gibraltar and the Czech
and Slovak republics.
Bell Atlantic Information Services Hellas has approximately 240 employees in
Greece, with plans to expand to 300 as the company hires more people to support
Bell Atlantic first began operations in Greece five years ago when it formed a
successful partnership with Telecom Italia to create STET Hellas, offering cellular
phone service to the Greek market under the TeleStet brand name. The company
has been a market-leader in wireless product innovation and closed the second
quarter of 1998 with more than 500,000 subscribers, an increase of 77 percent
over second quarter 1997. STET Hellas also completed a global public offering on
June 4, ending the quarter with a market capitalization of more than $3.5 billion.
Bell Atlantic owns 20 percent of the company.
Greece, the home of the first Olympics, was named by the International Olympic
Committee as the site for the Summer Olympics in 2004.
ICAP is approximately 45 percent owned by Alpha Credit Bank, the largest
private bank in Greece.
Bell Atlantic is at the forefront of the new communications and information
industry. With more than 41 million telephone access lines and more than
7 million wireless customers worldwide, Bell Atlantic companies are
premier providers of advanced wireline voice and data services, as well as
market leaders in wireless services. Bell Atlantic companies are also among
the world's largest investors in high-growth global communications
markets, with operations and investments in 23 countries.