Torstar's daily newspaper Metro to launch daily print edition, website, mobile apps in Saskatchewan's Saskatoon, Regina, to launch digital-only in Victoria, British Columbia and Ontario's Hamilton, Kitchener, Windsor

TORONTO , March 1, 2012 (press release) – Metro, Canada's most-read national daily newspaper, announced today that it is expanding into six new cities on April 2, 2012.

Metro will launch with the full suite of products in Saskatoon and Regina, including a daily print edition, website and mobile news apps for iPhone, iPad and Android.

In a bold move, Metro will launch digital-only in Hamilton, Kitchener, Windsor and Victoria. These launches mean Metro newspapers, including the French-language paper in Montreal, will now be available in 15 of the top 17 Census Metropolitan Areas in Canada, representing 85 per cent of the population in the country's metropolitan areas.

The new editions will target Metro's core readership - youthful, active metropolitans (YAMs) aged 18 to 49.

According to the 2011 Census, Saskatchewan is the third-fastest growing province in Canada. It enjoys one of Canada's lowest unemployment rates and has enjoyed economic growth due to the natural resource and energy sectors.

"I am delighted to lead this remarkable opportunity as we partner with the communities of Saskatoon and Regina," said Steve Shrout, Vice President and Group Publisher, Western Canada. "We look forward to offering a fresh urban news perspective in Canada's most vibrant Prairie communities."

The Metro Saskatoon and Metro Regina print editions will be distributed by hand promoters, in street boxes and at other strategic locations, focusing on the vibrant downtown core of each city. Daily circulation is expected to ramp up quickly to 20,000 copies in each market.

Metro's decision to enter Hamilton, Kitchener, Windsor and Victoria with our full suite of digital properties is part of the company's strategy to go where YAMs are. According to NADbank 2010 data, Hamilton, Kitchener, Windsor and Victoria rank in the top 15 markets in composition of 18-49 year-old smartphone owners. With a high percentage of connected YAMs in all these cities, Metro expects to be well received by readers.

"It is exciting to see the demand for Metro continue to grow with both our readers and advertising partners," said Bill McDonald, President, Metro English Canada.

"Our goal is to continuously improve and enhance our brand in an effort to reach the important target market of youthful, active metropolitans in every major city across Canada. Metro's expansion and digital enhancements are the natural next steps in this evolution."

About Metro

Metro is Canada's most-read national daily newspaper. Metro editions are published by Free Daily News Group Inc. in Ottawa, Toronto, London, Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver, and by Atlantic Free Daily Newspapers Inc. in Halifax. Metro is also published in Montreal by Les Publications Métropolitaines Inc. Metro targets YAMs (youthful, active metropolitans) and reaches more than 1.4 million readers daily and 2.9 million over the course of a week.

Torstar Corporation is the majority owner of Free Daily News Group Inc. with Metro International S.A. holding a small minority interest. Metro International S.A. also holds an interest in Les Publications Métropolitaines Inc and publishes newspapers in more than 100 major cities in 20 countries across Europe, North and South America and Asia. Metro has a unique global reach, attracting a youthful, active, well-educated, metropolitan audience of over 17 million daily readers.

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