Monday, May 25, 2015

Vancouver Magazine and Western Living sold to Yellow Pages Homes Ltd.

Western Living and Vancouver magazines have been sold to the owners of Yellow Pages. According to a memo to staff from Ted Markle, president of TC Media, the transaction which closed this morning means that all employees of the Western Magazine Group become Yellow Pages Homes Limited employees today. Western Living and Vancouver magazine were not included in the recent $55.5 million deal wherein TC Media recently sold off its other, eastern Canadian consumer magazines to the TVA Group (Quebecor).  Essentially, with this sale, TC Media is now entirely out of the consumer magazine business. As part of the deal the magazines will continue to be printed by TC Printing.
"Since the announcement of the transaction to sell our consumer magazines in Toronto and Montreal and the communication of the new vision for TC Media, I know that you were faced with uncertainty in this context of change," said Markle. "I want to personally thank all of you for keeping the focus on the brands and on the success of the business, with the same level of energy and professionalism for which you are recognized, despite this time of transition. I would also like to express my gratitude to Tom [general manager Tom Gierasimczuk, who is publisher of both magazines], who has shown tremendous leadership since his appointment and over the course of the past few months. 
"As we say goodbye, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you, on behalf of the entire organization, for your daily commitment and dedication to building the reputation of these two prestige brands. Vancouver Magazine and Western Living have made our name a beacon for thousands of readers in Western Canada. The many prizes that were awarded to your brands, most recently at the Alberta Magazine Awards in March, are a tribute to your passion and dedication. You have been part of our family and have shared our values for many years, and it is with sadness that we see you leave TC Transcontinental. 
"It's the end of a chapter, but certainly not the end of the story. May the future be one of both personal and professional growth for you all, and may you continue to thrive within the context of this new adventure."
There is so far no word on the price of the sale. Staff of the Western Magazine Group were being briefed this morning. 

Yellow Pages is the official directories publisher of Bell Canada, Telus, Bell Aliant, MTS Allstream and a number of other companies. It describes itself as the leading digital company in Canada and owns and manages a slew of trademarked  online directories:,, and  as well as  and a network of seven local city sites, including,,,,, and

Those of us with long memories can recall a time when the phone company of which Yellow Pages is a division owned Vancouver and Western Living before -- as part of Comac Communications Limited (Quest, Homemaker's, City Woman, Alaska Airlines, Ontario Living). It was later sold to an investment group and later still broken up and divested. And that Yellow Pages, which prides itself on its formidable selling horsepower, tried and failed at launching a magazine called Toronto This Season in 1997. 

Yellow Media Inc, bought the Vancouver-based Canpages in 2010 in a $225 million deal. This built not only the traditional print classified business, but perhaps more importantly on the digital search side.

More as is known. 

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