President and CEO's message /

ROBERT MACLELLAN
Chairman of the Board
JULIEN BILLOT
President and Chief Executive Officer

It is a real honour to join Yellow Media as President and Chief Executive Officer.

I have spent a significant portion of my career working in the media and marketing industry, positioning traditional media businesses to succeed in today’s digital age. These mandates were always the most challenging, as I was expected to rapidly and efficiently support business resiliency, growth and profitability within a very complex and competitive environment.

Regardless of these challenges, I continue to believe in the long-term success of our industry. Yellow Media is strongly positioned to spearhead digital transformation, as our national presence and history of serving small businesses remain key assets that cannot be easily replicated by new digital entrants.

YELLOW MEDIA IS STRONGLY POSITIONED TO SPEARHEAD DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION, AS OUR NATIONAL PRESENCE AND HISTORY OF SERVING SMALL BUSINESSES REMAIN KEY ASSETS THAT CANNOT BE EASILY REPLICATED BY NEW DIGITAL ENTRANTS.

The strength and resiliency of Yellow Media are reflected in the fact that amidst print revenue declines and a competitive and fragmented digital environment, the Company operates some of Canada’s leading digital local search properties. Yellow Media also offers its customers one of the largest full-serve, comprehensive digital product offerings and access to one of the country’s largest teams of sales advisors and campaign managers. With a strengthened capital structure, Yellow Media also has the required financial flexibility to invest and accelerate its digital transformation.

Despite this progress, challenges still lie ahead. While we have one of the longest standing and most recognizable brands in Canada, we must re-educate Canadian consumers and businesses on the evolution of our brand as a champion of neighbourhood economies and local business support. This brand promise will guide our efforts as we tackle other hurdles on our path to transformation.

To promote revenue growth, we also need to focus on providing current and prospective customers with an enhanced ROI. This is achieved by growing and protecting traffic on our owned and operated properties and ensuring our online and mobile platforms retain the majority of public mindshare when it comes to local, needs-based searches. As such, we’ll need to focus efforts on providing deep, rich content to attract and retain new audiences.

Customer service and the customer experience will also be an element we focus on in 2014. An emphasis on superior customer service must be implemented across the entire organization. We also need to evolve our products and services to better meet current and prospective customer needs, enhance servicing and fulfillment of these products, and improve our ability to track the success of our clients’ marketing campaigns using performance reporting tools. Customer acquisition also remains a key priority, as we strive to gain additional market share in Canada.

WE WILL MAKE INVESTMENTS IN HIRING NEW TALENT AND UPGRADING THE SKILLSETS OF OUR EXISTING WORKFORCE TO BEST SUPPORT OUR TRANSFORMATION.

These initiatives should be undertaken with profitability in mind, and the Company will work to ensure measures are taken to maximize efficiency and contain costs where appropriate. We will therefore develop new technologies to either replace or strengthen existing systems and processes, enabling us to be quicker, more agile and more responsive as a company and as a service provider to our customers and users. We will also make investments in hiring new talent and upgrading the skillsets of our existing workforce to best support our transformation.

These past months, I have been engaged in reviewing the strengths and challenges present in our business operations. I’ve spent time in each of our offices and with each department at Yellow Media. I’ve met with our employees across Canada and many of our stakeholders and business partners in order to have a full view of our competitive landscape, strategy, financials and people.

Based on this review and the information I’ve gathered from various stakeholders, I’m currently in the process of developing a detailed operational roadmap to execute the transformation of our business into a leading digital marketing enterprise. I expect to be able to share my roadmap with you in the near future.

I look forward to meeting and speaking with all of you at our upcoming Annual General Meeting.