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Shaw Communications' CEO Discusses Q4 2011 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Stocks in this article: SJR

Fiscal 2011 was an exciting year at Shaw as we implemented a number of strategic initiatives that were focused on providing our customers choice, flexibility and transparency, as well as the latest in technological advancement. We launched a number of innovative products and services, including the Shaw Plan Personalizer, the Shaw Gateway, and we introduced higher Internet speeds and data usage allowances for our broadband customers. We have begun the reclamation of our digital tiers, which will triple our Internet capacity. In an environment where customers are demanding higher speed and are utilizing data, intensive applications, we believe our service is truly unique versus competitive alternatives.

During the year, we completed the integration of our Media assets, and the business has proven to be a key strategic asset and a financially accretive acquisition. The division performed extremely well in fiscal 2011, as our leading portfolio of specialty channels and conventional programming benefited from the recovery in the advertising market. Based on our $2 billion purchase and the 12-month financial performance of Shaw Media for the period ending August 31, 2011, the transaction multiple represents only 6.1x consolidated EBITDA and reinforces the financial benefits of the acquisition, which closed a year ago.

Shaw is a dynamic company, a successful operator, a technology leader, and we have a proven track record of making sound financial investments for all of our stakeholders. Our decision to not pursue a conventional wireless business is consistent with our strategic DNA.

In September, we announced our plans to build a managed Wi-Fi network to extend our customers' broadband experience beyond their homes. Customers are actively seeking Wi-Fi hotspots to reduce data cost and improve their wireless broadband experience. Shaw will become the first service provider in Canada to deliver reliable wireless broadband through an extensive carrier-grade Wi-Fi network covering thousands of locations.

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