Tuesday, September 02, 2008

BPN 1208 Dutch Yellow Pages teams up with White Pages

The Dutch Yellow pages and the Dutch Telephone Directory are allowed to merge. The Dutch monopoly watchdog Nma has agreed with the merger. The publisher of the Yellow Pages , Truvo Nederland BV, will be acquired by European Directories SA. The merger can deliver synergies. The major effort will go in creating an online media platform.

The Dutch Yellow Pages have been part VNU and was sold when VNU needed money for the acquisition of Nielsen. It was bought by a World Directories, which is now known under the name Truvo and which is active in the Netherlands, Belgium, Ireland, Romania and Portugal.

The Dutch Yellow pages and the Dutch white pages have been working alongside each other, till the incumbent telecom operator KPN sold off the directory business and the new owner De Telefoongids BV, a subsidiary of European Directories SA, started to give the Yellow Pages competition. By merging the two publications new print and online products can created.

The Dutch white pages in print have been in existence since 1881. There is still a legally obligatorion for the directory company to be delivered at every home. It is printed in 45 regional editions. Also the Yellow Pages are delivered in print, but not obligatory. The first integrated directory will be ready by April 2009. There is an action group asking the government to lift the obligation of delivering the telephone directory to every home and business, as most people will look up a telephone number in the online directory. The action would save a lot of paper and distribution costs. The company should only be obliged to deliver the printed directory at request.

The online media platform holds enough interesting opportunities. The directories are now publically online on internet. It is also already represented in MSN. But the databases are also used by telecom services internally to operate a directory helpdesk. One of the promises is to provide better map material, even sharper than the Google Maps. Besides results can be compared of a for example restaurants by providing criteria such as kitchen, price or parking areas. These data can of course be offered online on internet, but also to navigation system companies.

Blog Posting Number: 1208

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