Shaw Communications
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Shaw Communications
Shaw Communications Inc.
Traded as
Founded1966; 54 years ago (1966) (as Capital Cable Television Company, Ltd.)
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Headquarters630 3rd Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta
T2P 4L4
Key people
Bradley S. Shaw (CEO)
Paul McAleese (President)[1]
ProductsCable television, high speed internet, telephone, satellite television, network and specialty broadcasting, logistics tracking, radio
RevenueIncreaseCAD $5.347 billion (2019)[1]
Increase CAD $2.161 billion (2019)[1]
Increase CAD $738 million (2019)[1]
Number of employees
15,000 (2018)
DivisionsShaw Broadcast Services, Shaw Direct, Shaw Mobile
SubsidiariesFreedom Mobile
Shaw Communications logo, used from 1993 to 1997
Shaw Communications logo, used from 1997 to 2012

Shaw Communications Inc. is a Canadian telecommunications company which provides telephone, Internet, television, and mobile services. Headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Shaw provides home telecommunications services primarily in Alberta and British Columbia and satellite television nationally. It also operates smaller cable television systems in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Northern Ontario. Shaw provides mobile services from Freedom Mobile and Shaw Mobile, in areas of Alberta, British Columbia, and Southern Ontario. The company's chief competitor for home telecommunications in western Canada is Telus Communications.


Shaw was founded in 1966 by JR Shaw as Capital Cable Television Company, Ltd. in Edmonton, Alberta.[3] It was originally a subsidiary of Shawcor, JR's father's firm, but the business was split from Shawcor in the 1970s.[4][5] The company changed its name to Shaw Cablesystems Ltd. (after founder and chairman JR Shaw) and went public on the TSX in 1983. The company grew during the 1980s and 1990s through acquisitions of firms including Classicomm in the Toronto area, Access Communications in Nova Scotia, Fundy Cable in New Brunswick, Trillium Cable in Ontario, Telecable in Saskatchewan, Greater Winnipeg Cablevision[6] (serving areas east of the Red River), and Videon Cablesystems of Winnipeg (serving areas west of the Red River), which had itself previously acquired Vidéotron's assets in Alberta. However, two swaps, in 1994 and 2001, with Rogers Cable have resulted in its assets being restricted to Western Canada and a few areas of Northern Ontario.[7] In 1999, Shaw spun out its media properties into a second publicly traded company, Corus Entertainment.[8][9] In 2001 the Moffat family sold Videon Cablesystems to Shaw.

Prior to 2003, Shaw owned cable systems in the United States previously owned by Moffat Communications, serving six communities in Florida (Eastern Pasco County, Clermont, Palm Coast, Ormond Beach, West Palm Beach and Doral), and the Houston, Texas suburbs of Kingwood, Lake Conroe and Lake Livingston. In February 2003, the Florida systems would be sold to Time Warner Cable (with the West Palm Beach and Doral systems later sold to Comcast, and the other systems spun off to Bright House Networks), while the Texas systems were sold to Cequel III, as part of its then-Cebridge Connections subsidiary (now Suddenlink Communications).[10][11]

In 2008, Shaw entered the AWS spectrum auction with the intention of possibly becoming a wireless phone provider. The auction ended July 2008, giving Shaw Communications enough spectrum to build a wireless network in its home provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario.[12] This spectrum ultimately went unused and was sold to Rogers Communications in January 2013.[13]

In July 2009, Shaw announced its acquisition of Mountain Cablevision; in September, Rogers sued Shaw to block the sale, citing violations of a non-compete clause. However, the suit was quickly dismissed by the Ontario Superior Court.[14][15] The purchase was approved by the CRTC on October 22, 2009.[16][17] The acquisition was Shaw's first cable property east of Sault Ste. Marie since the 2001 swaps with Rogers and Cogeco. Shaw's re-entry into Southern Ontario would be short-lived, as its Hamilton system would be resold to Rogers in January 2013 as part of a deal which also saw unused wireless spectrum sold to the company, and saw Rogers sell its stake in specialty channel TVtropolis.[13]

Return to broadcasting

On April 30, 2009, Shaw announced a deal to acquire three television stations -- CHWI-TV in Windsor, Ontario, CKNX-TV in Wingham, Ontario and CKX-TV in Brandon, Manitoba -- from CTVglobemedia. CTV had indicated that it would shut down the stations, all of which were incurring extensive financial losses, later in the year if a buyer could not be found, and had placed them on the market at a price of just $1 each.[18] However, it was reported on June 30, 2009, that Shaw had backed out of the deal and was declining to complete the purchase.[19] CHWI-TV would remain on the air as is; CKNX-TV would become a repeater of London station CFPL-TV in September 2009, while CKX-TV would close down entirely in October 2009.

In February 2010, Shaw announced an agreement with the financially troubled Canwest, whereby Shaw would buy an 80% voting interest, and 20% equity interest, in the restructured entity of Canwest, pending approvals from the CRTC and others.[20] Three months later, following negotiations with rival bidders, the company said it would purchase the entirety of Canwest's broadcasting assets, including the interests in the CW Media subsidiary partially held by Goldman Sachs Capital Partners.[21] Canwest's newspapers were not part of the Shaw deal and were sold separately to Postmedia Network.

The acquisition was completed on October 27, 2010, after CRTC approval for the sale was announced on October 22, forming the Shaw Media division.[22]


In November 2012, Shaw underwent a corporate re-branding, introducing an updated logo and slogan, along with a new promotional campaign featuring animated robots (including two named mascot robots, Bit and Bud) that live in a representation of Shaw's infrastructure, depicting them as being responsible for how their services work. The campaign was designed by the Vancouver-based agency Rethink, who were also responsible for Bell Canada's beaver characters Frank and Gordon.[23][24]

In April 2013, Shaw Business Solutions took over Enmax's Envision subsidiary, which had built a fiber-optic network throughout Calgary. The acquisition was completed for $225 Million.[25]

Shaw Communications logo, used since 2012

In 2014, Shaw partnered with Rogers Communications to launch Shomi, a subscription video on demand service.[26]

In February 2015, Shaw Communications announced that they would close operations for service call centers in Edmonton, Calgary and Kelowna, and consolidate operations in Victoria, Vancouver, Winnipeg and Montreal. 1,600 of Shaw's 14,000 employees were affected by the consolidation and cuts.[27] The company offered affected employees the option to relocate to its centralized offices, apply for a new job at their location, or leave the company with a severance package for former employees unable to relocate.[27][28]

In 2013, Shaw attempted to begin developing an IPTV-based platform for its television services. However, after experiencing issues developing the platform, Shaw took a $55 million write-down in June 2015, and announced that it was licensing Comcast's cloud-based Xfinity X1 architecture.[29][30] In January 2016, Shaw launched its mobile television app FreeRange TV, based on X1 infrastructure, which allows Shaw subscribers to stream selected TV channels and on-demand content.[31][32] On January 11, 2017, Shaw launched its X1-based cable service, BlueSky, in Calgary.[33] Shaw also launched "BlueCurve", a new suite of routers which is likewise based on Comcast's xFi platform and hardware.[34]

Freedom Mobile, divestment of media assets

On December 16, 2015, Shaw announced its proposed acquisition of independent wireless provider Wind Mobile from its investors in a deal worth approximately $1.6 billion.[35] The transaction closed on March 1, 2016.[36] Under Shaw, the company was renamed Freedom Mobile in November 2016, coinciding with the launch of its 4G LTE network.[37] The acquisition of Wind was funded by a reorganization in April 2016, which saw the Shaw Media unit transferred to Corus Entertainment,[38] in exchange for $1.85 billion in cash and 71,364,853 class B non-voting shares of Corus.[39] The sale did not include Shaw's 50% stake in the Shomi streaming service and CJBN-TV Kenora; Shomi was shut down in November 2016 and CJBN-TV Kenora was shut down in January 2017.[38][40]

Other activities

Shaw is the parent of Shaw Broadcast Services (previously Shaw Satellite Services, Canadian Satellite Communications, or Cancom) and, through Shaw Broadcast Services,[41]Shaw Direct, one of Canada's two national direct broadcast satellite providers. For many years it also owned a number of radio stations and specialty television services; these assets were later spun off into Corus Entertainment in an effort to satisfy a now-repealed CRTC policy discouraging cross-ownership of cablesystems and specialty services.


Internet usage-based billing

In December 2010, Shaw filed complaints with the CRTC to have competing internet video services such as Netflix classified as broadcasters under Canadian law.[42] In the same month, Shaw introduced usage-based billing on internet plans and lowered plan caps an average of 25% while introducing overage fees of $1 to $2 per gigabyte.[43] On February 8, 2011, Shaw agreed to put a hold on usage-based billing for its services and to this date continues to not charge customers any overages for surpassing Internet data caps.[44]

Eponymous buildings

See also


  1. ^ a b c d "Shaw Senior Leadership". Shaw Communications Inc. Retrieved 2020.
  2. ^ Hardy, Ian (April 12, 2017). "Alek Krstajic is stepping down as CEO of Freedom Mobile". MobileSyrup. Retrieved 2017.
  3. ^ "Shaw History". Shaw Communications Inc. 2008-09-03. Retrieved .
  4. ^ "Shaw business dynasty began in rural Lambton County". Wallaceburg Courier Press. 2016-01-14. Retrieved .
  5. ^ "ShawCor boss's hands-off approach to energy firm leaves time for golf". The Globe and Mail. 2002-05-20. Retrieved .
  6. ^ "Shaw Cablesystems receives approval from CRTC to purchase Greater Winnipeg Cablevision". Canadian Radio and Telecommunications Commission. 1992-12-23. Retrieved .
  7. ^ "Milestones". Archived from the original on 16 December 2004. Retrieved .
  8. ^ "Canuck players plan splitting up of WIC". Variety. Retrieved 2016.
  9. ^ "Corus lines up behind Canuck Shaw's assets". Variety. Retrieved 2016.
  10. ^ "Pasco: Time Warner to expand with Shaw purchase". Archived from the original on 27 November 2004. Retrieved 2015.
  11. ^ "Cequel III to buy Shaw's Texas systems". CED. Archived from the original on 24 February 2014. Retrieved 2015.
  12. ^ Post, Financial (2008-06-23). "Wireless spectrum auction". Archived from the original on 2012-11-09. Retrieved .
  13. ^ a b "Shaw hangs up on its cellular plans". The Globe and Mail. January 14, 2013. Archived from the original on 16 February 2013. Retrieved 2016.
  14. ^ "Rogers sues to block Shaw's Ontario cable buy". CBC News. Retrieved 2017.
  15. ^ "Rogers' territorial lawsuit against Shaw quashed". CBC News. Retrieved 2017.
  16. ^ "Shaw Communications press release: Shaw Closes Mountain Cablevision Transaction" (PDF). Shaw. October 22, 2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 November 2009.
  17. ^ "Shaw Communications gets CRTC approval to buy Mountain Cablevision in Hamilton". Canadian Press. Ottawa: October 22, 2009.
  18. ^ CTV Accepts Shaw Offer to Buy Local Stations, CTVglobemedia press release via TradeMarkets, April 30, 2009
  19. ^ Grant Robertson, "Shaw cancels deal for 3 CTV stations". The Globe and Mail, June 30, 2009.
  20. ^ Shaw moves for Canwest control,, 2010-02-12
  21. ^ Pav Jordan (2010-05-04). "Shaw to buy Canwest TV unit". Reuters. Retrieved .
  22. ^ Shaw Communications (press release) (2010-10-22). "Shaw announces acquisition of Canwest Broadcasting assets expected to close October 27, 2010" (PDF). Retrieved .
  23. ^ "Shaw robot mascots recall Bell's beavers". Financial Post. Retrieved 2013.
  24. ^ "Shaw Rebrands, launches national campaign". Marketing Magazine. Archived from the original on 4 November 2012. Retrieved 2013.
  25. ^ JEFF MCINTOSH. "Shaw Communications to buy Enmax Envision for $225-million".
  26. ^ "Shomi set to go to wider audience". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2015.
  27. ^ a b De Vynck, Gerrit (February 12, 2015). "Shaw says 1,600 employees must choose: relocation or severance". BNN. Bell Media. Archived from the original on 14 February 2015. Retrieved 2015.
  28. ^ Stephenson, Amanda (February 11, 2015). "Shaw communications relocating customer care operations; 1,000 jobs in Calgary affected". Calgary Herald. Retrieved 2015.
  29. ^ "Shaw to Trial Comcast's X1 Platform". Multichannel News. Retrieved 2016.
  30. ^ "Shaw: Why We're Testing Comcast's X1". Multichannel News. Retrieved 2016.
  31. ^ "CES 2016: Shaw Puts Comcast's X1 to Work". Multichannel News. Retrieved 2016.
  32. ^ "Shaw targets Telus with mobile app offering live TV, on-demand content". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2016.
  33. ^ "Shaw Communications Inc. launches Comcast's X1 TV platform to wrestle back market share from Telus". Financial Post. Retrieved 2017.
  34. ^ "ASSIA deploys service for TalkTalk, Shaw & Virgin Media debut whole-home Wi-Fi". Wi-Fi NOW Events. 2019-04-08. Retrieved .
  35. ^ Dobby, Christine (December 16, 2015). "Shaw to buy Wind Mobile for $1.6-billion". The Globe and Mail. Archived from the original on 29 January 2016. Retrieved 2015.
  36. ^ "Shaw enters wireless market with closing of Wind Mobile deal". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2016.
  37. ^ "Wind Mobile to become Freedom Mobile, launch faster network in Toronto, Vancouver". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2016.
  38. ^ a b "Corus Entertainment acquires Shaw Media for $2.65-billion". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2016.
  39. ^ "Shaw Communications completes sale of Shaw Media to Corus Entertainment". Shaw Newsroom. Shaw Communications. April 1, 2016. Retrieved 2016.
  40. ^ "CRTC's Blais raps Rogers, Shaw over Shomi". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2016.
  41. ^ "Shaw Broadcast Services". Archived from the original on 7 December 2006. Retrieved .
  42. ^ "Companies like Netflix should be regulated by CRTC: Shaw". The Canadian Press. The Globe and Mail. December 9, 2010. Retrieved 2014.
  43. ^ "". Retrieved .
  44. ^ Shaw, Gillian (2011-02-08). "Shaw puts brakes on usage-based billing". Archived from the original on 2 May 2012. Retrieved .

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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