Customers Key to Expanding Share of SME Wallet
week, Sensis Pty. Ltd., Australia's dominant Yellow Pages publisher, staged
a half-day event for financial analysts to present its anticipated results
for the 2002-2003 financial year ending June 30. More significantly, Sensis,
which is 100 percent owned by the Australian telecom Telstra Corp. Ltd.,
described its plans to achieve sustainable growth in the 6 percent range,
with 4 percent growth in print and 25 percent growth online.
Sensis expects to
finish the 2002-2003 fiscal year with revenues of 1.2 billion Australian
dollars (about US$787 million). That represents a 6.8 percent increase
over the 2001-2002 fiscal year and includes print Yellow Pages growth
of nearly 4 percent (more than 7 percent in non-metropolitan areas). It
also includes White Pages print growth topping 16 percent.
Sensis forecasts year-end
2002-2003 electronic revenues of 66.4 million Australian dollars, a 29
percent increase. Those revenues encompass directories as well as the
company's other online businesses, including the CitySearch local portal
acquired last year, its Web Works (Web site creation) and MediaSmart (online
advertising network) businesses.
New items in the core
product have also contributed to growth. The introduction of half and
full-page ads in Sensis's larger books, for example, has accounted for
between 1 percent and 2 percent of growth. The addition of color advertising
in White Pages was worth an additional 0.5 percent. Sensis's White Pages
product is a world leader in revenue development, representing about 17
percent of Sensis's 2002-2003 projected revenues.
Sensis's growth plans
rely on leveraging three core portfolio businesses: directory advertising,
non-directory advertising and information services. The company is also
developing a content-management platform that allows information to be
collected once and provisioned across multiple media, enabling Sensis
to operate all of its businesses at a high margin. And Sensis plans to
supplement its efforts to grow organically. It plans to do this with partnerships
and acquisitions, including directory acquisitions outside Australia.