Verizon Information Services to Purchase TELUS Advertising Services Directory Business
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BURNABY, B.C. - TELUS, one of Canada's leading telecommunications providers, and Verizon Information Services, the world's largest yellow pages and online directory provider, have reached agreement on the substantive terms under which Verizon will purchase TELUS' directory information services business and incorporate it into what will be Canada's second-largest directory publisher, Dominion Information Services Inc. The parties expect to complete their definitive sales and purchase agreements shortly.
Upon completion of the transaction, Verizon will combine TELUS' directory operations, including portions of Alberta-based TELUS Advertising Services (TAS), with Verizon's British Columbia-based Dominion Information Services and Quebec-based Les Annuaires du Quebec to form a print, wireless and online directory provider with national reach. As the directory services provider for TELUS in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Quebec, Dominion Information Services Inc. will provide directory services in provinces representing more than 80 percent of the Canadian market.
Dominion Information Services Inc. revenues are estimated to be approximately US$232 million in 2001. The combined operations produce approximately 118 different directory titles, distribute nearly 11 million copies and employ more than 800 people.
The newly combined company will offer customers a wide array of high-quality products, including bundled print and Internet-based advertising services. It also will introduce a Canadian version of Verizon's SuperPages.com online directory to its markets. SuperPages.com is the leading online directory service and shopping resource in the United States, with 8.1 million visits and 19.9 million searches per month.
"This sale facilitates the consolidation of the Canadian directory services that support TELUS and allows us to concentrate on our network business and raising capital to support our data, Internet and wireless growth," said TELUS President Darren Entwistle. "Verizon knows the directory business and the market in Canada and is a strong partner to continue producing the TELUS PAGES. Verizon's commitment to the directory business and reputation as an industry leader is also great news for our employees who will join the Verizon team."
"We're excited about this transaction on many levels," said Verizon Information Services President Kathy Harless. "TELUS' directory business is well-run and successful. It has excellent products, a strong brand and great employees. The combined company will be well positioned for print, Internet and wireless product growth throughout Canada's markets. And, there are numerous cross-border opportunities with Verizon's operations in the U.S. Pacific Northwest and New England."
The transaction includes all of TELUS' Canadian directory information services assets, an initial 30-year publishing agreement and rights to the information services space on TELUS' Internet portal network, including MyBC.com, Alberta.com and MyTO.com. The transaction is subject to Canadian regulatory approval and is expected to be completed this summer.
TELUS will use the proceeds from the transaction, which is valued at C$810M (est. U.S. $520M), to help finance its strategy of becoming the premier national communications provider in Canada and to pay down debt recently incurred for strategic acquisitions. While Verizon Communications expects the acquisition to be slightly accretive to its earnings immediately, current financial guidance is unchanged.
Verizon Information Services Group President - International Scott Hanle said that the new company's headquarters would be in Burnaby, adjacent to Vancouver. It will maintain operations in Alberta, Quebec and Ontario, with a significant presence in Edmonton and Calgary. Hanle said that the directories published in TELUS operating territories will carry the TELUS PAGES brand.
Following its merger with BC TEL in 1998, TELUS was served by several directory providers - TAS in Alberta, Dominion in British Columbia and Les Annuaires du Quebec in Quebec. Several months ago, TELUS announced plans to sell its directory information services business.
Verizon Information Services and SuperPages.com
Verizon Information Services is a world leading print and online directory publisher and a content provider for communications products and services. Based in Dallas, Texas, Verizon Information Services has annual revenues of more than U.S.$4.1 billion and employs more than 11,000 people. The company provides sales, publishing and other related services in 17 countries, 48 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, for nearly 2,300 directory titles, including more than 1,600 Verizon directory titles. Total global circulation is 147 million copies.
Verizon Information Services also produces and markets SuperPages.com, the Internet's preeminent online directory and shopping resource. SuperPages.com has received as many as 8.1 million visits and completed as many as 19.9 million searches per month. SuperPages.com is the exclusive yellow pages provider on Excite, Lycos, AOL Service, AOL.com, Digital City, HotBot, and BigFoot.
TELUS Corporation (TSE: T, T.A; NYSE: TU) is one of Canada's leading telecommunications companies providing a full range of telecommunications products and services that connect Canadians to the world. The company generated C$6.4 billion in revenues in 2000 and is the leading service provider in Western Canada. TELUS also provides data, Internet Protocol, voice and wireless services to Central and Eastern Canada. With the purchase of QuébecTel (now TELUS Québec) and national digital wireless company Clearnet Communications Inc. (now TELUS Mobility), TELUS is rapidly strengthening its position as a leading national service provider. For more information about TELUS, visit www.telus.com .
Dominion Information Services and Les Annuaires du Quebec
Dominion Information Services( and Les Annuaires du Quebec are leading providers of directory and web-based advertising solutions for small and medium sized businesses in Canada. For over 70 years, Dominion Information Services( has been the official publisher of white pages and classified directories for TELUS (formerly BC TEL) in British Columbia and since 1967, Les Annuaires du Quebec has been the official publisher for QuebecTel. The two divisions of Verizon Information Services produce more than 60 directories with a circulation of nearly 6 million copies as well as selling Internet advertising and e-commerce solutions. Dominion's commitment to excellence was recognized with the 1997 Canada Awards for Excellence - Quality - Large Service. Based in Burnaby, British Columbia, the two divisions employ more than 500 people with offices in Victoria and Kelowna, British Columbia, and in Rimouski, Quebec.
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