TELUS compliant as non-Canadian ownership is below 33 1/3 per cent
VANCOUVER, July 23, 2012 /CNW/ - Today TELUS formally responded to the
Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC)
about the misleading allegations by Globalive concerning TELUS' foreign
ownership levels. TELUS' response highlights that its long-established
systems to monitor and control foreign ownership of its voting shares
have kept the company compliant with Canada's foreign ownership
restrictions for telecommunications companies.
As of June 29, 32.59 per cent of TELUS' voting shares are held by
non-Canadians, below the federal limit of 33.3 per cent. This includes
the holdings of New York based hedge fund Mason Capital, which recently
reported it held a 19.98 per cent ownership stake of TELUS common
Mason has recently made foreign ownership allegations public that are
very similar to Globalive's in an attempt to frustrate TELUS plans to
consolidate its dual class share structure on a one-for-one basis.
Mason Capital has employed a controversial investment strategy that is
contrary to good corporate governance known as "empty voting". This
entails making a large investment in TELUS voting shares as well as
shorting a large amount of TELUS shares - primarily non-voting shares -
to minimize its overall net economic investment in TELUS in order to
benefit from driving a wider spread between the price of TELUS' two
"Globalive relies on flawed data to support its false claims, a report
that added 39 million shares to our total while not accurately
reporting citizenship of shareholders. The CRTC should dismiss their
complaint," said Robert McFarlane, TELUS executive vice-president and
CFO. "TELUS continues to be fully compliant with Canada's foreign
ownership restrictions and has again proven that decisively with the
information we put forward to the CRTC today."
Globalive and Mason both used reports from Broadridge Financial
Solutions as the basis for their allegations. Broadridge reports use
geographical and mailing information to provide companies a snapshot of
where their investors are based, but do not filter out short trading
and other factors that can result in shares being counted more than
once. As a result, the Broadridge reports counted 214 million TELUS
voting shares, yet the company has only 175 million such shares.
Subsequent to Globalive and Mason's claims, Broadridge confirmed to
TELUS its reports did not accurately portray TELUS foreign ownership,
and should never be used for that purpose.
"Any reports that add 39 million extra shares to your actual total
cannot form the basis for determining an accurate percentage of foreign
owners," Mr. McFarlane said. "TELUS has a reliable foreign ownership
monitoring and control process involving a reservation and declaration
system for non-Canadian shareholders purchasing our voting shares. That
process has proven effective in maintaining our foreign ownership
levels under the threshold allowed despite Mason's recent purchase of
almost 20 per cent of TELUS' voting shares."
TELUS' processes to control foreign ownership levels are administered
through its third party transfer agent, Computershare, which processes
the applications from non-Canadians interested in purchasing TELUS
shares, maintains TELUS' shareholder registry, and obtains investor
residency declarations from participating institutions.
TELUS (TSX: T, T.A; NYSE: TU) is a leading national telecommunications
company in Canada, with $10.5 billion of annual revenue and
12.7 million customer connections including 7.4 million wireless
subscribers, 3.5 million wireline network access lines and 1.3 million
Internet subscribers and more than 550,000 TELUS TV customers. Led
since 2000 by President and CEO, Darren Entwistle, TELUS provides a
wide range of communications products and services including wireless,
data, Internet protocol (IP), voice, television, entertainment and
In support of our philosophy to give where we live, TELUS, our team
members and retirees have contributed more than $260 million to
charitable and not-for-profit organizations and volunteered 4.2 million
hours of service to local communities since 2000. Eleven TELUS
Community Boards across Canada lead TELUS' local philanthropic
initiatives. TELUS Community Boards in British Columbia include
Vancouver, Victoria and the Thompson-Okanagan. TELUS was honoured to be
named the most outstanding philanthropic corporation globally for 2010
by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, becoming the first
Canadian company to receive this prestigious international recognition.
For more information about TELUS, please visit telus.com.
SOURCE: TELUS Corporation
For further information:
TELUS Media Relations