Quebecor World Spins Off Its Premedia Operations

MONTREAL—Continuing to sharpen its focus as it grows, Quebecor World has spun off its premedia operations into a separate subsidiary, and is shedding its CD-ROM production facilities.

The company has created Que-Net Media, a wholly owned subsidiary that will bring together the full range of digital and premedia assets within Quebecor World “to bring greater focus to providing a more comprehensive range of solutions to the customer base,” company officials say.

Chris Rudge, president of Quebecor World’s Canadian operations, will become president of Que-Net Media. Officials say the subsidiary will expand upon Quebecor World’s existing network of premedia centers to establish a global network of digital content centers by developing and expanding its existing premedia and digital photography centers.

Officials note that one market for the new subsidiary’s services will be e-retailers and e-catalogers, which are turning to print products to create brand awareness and attract Website traffic. They note, for example, that advertising in Quebecor World’s U.S. magazine group was up 9.5 percent in the first two months of this year.

“The Internet is the best thing that ever happened to print,” declares Charles G. Cavell, president and CEO of Quebecor World. “We’ve just finished an unprecedented first quarter in volume, thanks to dotcom demand. Now we’re re-orienting our business to ensure that we can best serve our customers’ needs for premedia services, whether this be for print or Web formats.”

With the dotcom print demand comes the need for digital photography and digital text management. Quebecor World has existing facilities that have traditionally provided these services for print customers. Revenues from these facilities are approximately US$150 million annually. Of this amount, close to 10 percent is now coming from unsolicited demand for Web marketing services.

Quebecor World’s current network of digital and conventional photography studios in Chicago, New York, Toronto, Montreal, Orlando, FL, and Halifax, Nova Scotia, will be expanded across the continent. In addition, a series of new, high-technology Customer Solutions Centers will be established in Toronto, Chicago, New York and Los Angeles. The new company will also contract the Que-Net fiber optics network that currently connects Quebecor World plants, premedia centers and major customers.

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