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Yahoo!Xtra Launches in New Zealand

Yahoo!Xtra Launches in New Zealand

Telecom New Zealand and Yahoo!7 today launched a new joint venture media company, Yahoo!Xtra. The Auckland-based company will provide world-class online content and products for New Zealanders at www.yahooxtra.co.nz, which goes live tomorrow.

Yahoo!Xtra Chairman and Interim CEO Ian Smith says Yahoo!Xtra brings together Yahoo!'s global reach and world-class products and services and Xtra's understanding of New Zealanders, their passions, and their interests.

“Our goal is to deliver New Zealand internet users the finest entertainment, information and communications experience available. Today is the start of the journey and we will continue to roll out new online initiatives that combine the strengths of Yahoo! and Xtra.

“With Yahoo!Xtra New Zealanders join a global community of almost half a billion people using Yahoo! in more than 20 countries. Worldwide, Yahoo! leads in providing the platforms and technologies for the things people most enjoy on the Internet, including social networking, user-generated content and personalising their online experiences.

“For the month of December last year, for example, Yahoo!’s social media properties worldwide including Video, Answers, 360 (blogging), and Flickr received more than 110 million unique visitors,” says Mr Smith.

Telecom COO, Consumer Kevin Kenrick, one of three Telecom representatives on the board of the joint venture, says New Zealanders can expect some exciting additions to the new site over the coming months.

“I’m sure Kiwis will be as keen as consumers around the world have been to enjoy all the unique Yahoo! services that Yahoo!Xtra will offer as the site develops. New Zealanders can look forward to uploading their own content on Yahoo! Video, sharing knowledge on Yahoo! Answers, and creating their own personalised radio stations with Yahoo! Music,” says Mr Kenrick.

“Yahoo!Xtra will have the local news, sport and entertainment content provided by our own editorial team and other local content providers. It will also have exciting new lifestyle content, including fantastic material from Pacific Magazine titles,” Mr Kenrick says.

“Yahoo!Xtra will be the best of New Zealand linked to the best the rest of the world has to offer, and puts us in a prime position to capitalise on changing trends in media consumption and Internet usage. This means benefits and opportunities for consumers, advertisers, and media content providers alike.”

The make-up of the new joint venture’s board, to be chaired by Yahoo!7 CEO Ian Smith, was also announced today. Joining Mr Smith on the Yahoo!Xtra board are:

• Kevin Kenrick, Telecom COO, Consumer

• Mark Verbiest, Telecom Group General Counsel

• Rod Snodgrass, Telecom GM, Group Strategy and Development

• Rohan Lund, Seven Network Director of Digital Media and Strategic Investments

• David Gowdey, Yahoo! Director Corporate Development South Asia.

The appointment of a permanent Auckland-based CEO is expected to be announced in the coming weeks, along with further senior management appointments. Tom Osborne, formerly of Colenso BBDO in Auckland, was last week appointed Yahoo!Xtra’s new National Sales Director.

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Telecom

The Telecom Group provides telecommunications and ICT services in New Zealand and Australia. It is the principal supplier of telecommunications services in New Zealand. Telecom provides services connected via fixed networks which use fibre optic, copper and wireless technologies. Telecom provides local, national and international telephone services and a range of other telecommunications and ICT services including leased circuits, Internet services, data communications, directories, e-commerce and mobile communications. In New Zealand, Telecom operates the major national telephone network, with more than 95 percent of inter-city trunk routes on fibre optic. Telecom is listed on the New Zealand, Australian and United States stock exchanges.

Telecom launched ISP Xtra and xtra.co.nz in 1996, bringing the Internet to the homes of mainstream New Zealanders. In 2001 xtra.co.nz partnered with MSN (XtraMSN) and in 2006 for the first time XtraMSN received over 100 million total page impressions in a single month. Visitor numbers to XtraMSN have grown by 45 percent in the past two years and the website currently attracts more than 3 million unique browsers per month.

Yahoo!7

Yahoo!7 is one of the most comprehensive and engaging online destinations for Australian consumers and advertisers. Formed as a 50-50 partnership between the Seven Network Limited (ASX: SEV) and Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO), Yahoo!7 brings together the successful Australian internet business, Yahoo! Australia & NZ, and the online assets and television and magazine content of the Seven Network, one of Australia's leading media companies. The company also combines the strengths of Yahoo! search and communications capabilities and its global internet network, with Seven's rich media and entertainment content and marketing capabilities.


ENDS

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