News / May 2012

CISPA and protecting your personal online freedom

During the SOPA / PIPA debacle, Internet denizens came out in droves to beat the bills back and protect our collective online rights. We, as in the Internet at large, said that the battle was won but the war would continue. The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act is the latest attempt at an affront to your online freedom.

CISPA hits the senate floor for voting in early June having already passed the US House of Representatives. If passed by the Senate, the last hope to get CISPA sent back to the proverbial drawing board would be a White House veto.

If passed, CISPA would provide broad authority to government organizations to collect and pass information between agencies. “Cyber threat information,” as the bill puts it. Ostensibly, CISPA is intended as a response to cyber security threats from hackers, terrorists or criminals. CISPA would give broad allowances for government agencies to pass our private information and communications between themselves. Currently, doing so leaves said agencies open to lawsuits from private citizens. Perhaps more disturbing, it allows (or could force) private organizations to pass information to government agencies under the same provisions.

The language in CISPA is in some cases so vague that it would be too easy to put to ill use. The powers afforded are too broad and would allow the government and private corporations like Facebook, Google et. al. to pass private information freely, with impunity. All under the guise of protecting against a “cyber threat.” The language explaining what exactly constitutes a cyber threat is also too broadly and loosely defined (see page 15 of the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act) and potentially sacrifices too many of our personal freedoms.

Our issues with CISPA are many. As concerned Internet citizens, we worry about what it would mean for personal online privacy—both yours and our own. As an Internet company that takes your privacy very (very) seriously, we worry about our ability to protect your online privacy, for our part, will be severely compromised.

If you feel, as we do, that CISPA is an ill conceived and too loosely defined a bill, please make your voices heard.

At Tucows, we feel that the Internet—whether accessed on your computer, on your smartphone or via any other vehicle—is vitally important. CISPA is a very serious threat to the freedom and privacy we take for granted online.

Tucows Inc. Reports Continuing Strong Financial Results for First Quarter of 2012

- Company Reports 8th Consecutive Quarter of Record Revenue and Strong Cash Flow from Operations -

TORONTO, May 8, 2012 – Tucows Inc. (NYSE AMEX:TCX, TSX:TC), a global provider of domain names and other Internet services, today reported its financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2012. All figures are in U.S. dollars.

Summary Financial Results

(Numbers in Thousands of US Dollars, Except Per Share Data)

  3 Months Ended

March 31, 2012

(unaudited)
3 Months Ended

March 31, 2011

(unaudited)
Net revenue 27,537 22,555
Income before provision for income taxes and change in fair value of
forward exchange contracts 
1,950  512
Net income for the period 1,664 728
Net earnings per common share 0.04 0.01
Net cash provided by operating activities 2,081 763

Summary of Revenues and Cost of Revenues

(Numbers in Thousands of US Dollars)

  Revenue Cost of Revenue
  3 Months Ended

March 31, 2012

(unaudited)
3 Months Ended

March 31, 2011

(unaudited)
3 Months Ended

March 31, 2012

(unaudited)
3 Months Ended

March 31, 2011

(unaudited)
Wholesale        
 Domain Service 21,108 17,540 17,620 14,573
 Value-Added Services 2,689 2,266 507 513
Total Wholesale 23,797 19,806 18,127 15,086
         
Retail 1,850 1,195 930 419
Portfolio 1,891 1,554 210 190
         
Network, other costs - - 1,257 1,263
Network, depreciation and amortization costs - - 183 256
Total revenue/cost of revenue 27,537 22,555 20,707 17,214

NOTE: Beginning in the first quarter of 2012, Tucows has reclassified its revenue streams into three distinct service offerings: Wholesale, Retail and Portfolio1. The realignment is intended to better reflect the manner in which these revenue streams are generated and assessed by management.

“The first quarter of 2012 was a solid Tucows quarter – growth across all areas of our business, strong cash generation from operations, consistency and reliability,” said Elliot Noss, President and Chief Executive Officer, Tucows Inc. “We generated growth in revenue and gross margin far in excess of the growth in operating expenses, demonstrating the leverage in our business. We think that consistent growth and continued leverage will serve us well throughout 2012.”

Net revenue for the first quarter of 2012 increased 22% to a record $27.5 million from $22.6 million for the first quarter of 2011 and was driven by growth in each of the Company’s three service offerings.

Net income for the first quarter of 2012 was $1.7 million, or $0.04 per share, compared with net income for the first quarter of 2011 of $0.7 million, or $0.01 per share. Net income for the first quarter of 2012 benefitted from other income of $0.5 million resulting from the sale of certain intangible assets with no book value.

Deferred revenue at the end of the first quarter of 2012 was $73.0 million, an increase of 12% from $64.9 million at the end of the first quarter of 2011 and $69.2 from the end of the fourth quarter of 2011.

Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the first quarter of 2012 were $6.4 million compared with $4.2 million at the end of the first quarter of 2011 and relatively unchanged from the end of the fourth quarter of 2011. During the first quarter of 2012, the Company generated cash flow from operations of $2.1 million, as well as $0.5 million in cash proceeds from the aforementioned sale of intangible assets. In addition, the Company utilized $4.0 million from its credit facility to partially fund the $5.9 million cost of the share repurchases under the modified Dutch auction tender completed in January of this year. The Company also used $0.5 million for principal repayments under its credit facility and invested $0.2 million in equipment purchases.

1Service Offerings: Wholesale, primarily branded as OpenSRS, is composed of revenue generated by the OpenSRS Domain Service and Other Value-Added Services, including hosted email, SSL and other trust certificates, bulk sale of domain names and advertising from the OpenSRS Domain Expiry Stream, web publishing tools, mobile phone services, third-party marketing funds, and billing software for ISPs. Retail is primarily composed of services to individuals and small businesses, including Hover, which generates revenue from the sale of domain name registration and email, and Ting, which generates revenue from mobile phone services. Portfolio includes revenue generated by the resale of names from the domain name portfolio and advertising revenue from the Company’s domain name portfolio and two large advertising-supported websites.

Conference Call

Tucows management will host a conference call today, Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at 5:00 p.m. (ET) to discuss the Company’s first quarter 2012 results. Participants can access the conference call via the Internet at www.tucowsinc.com/investors.
For those unable to participate in the conference call at the scheduled time, it will be archived for replay both by telephone and via the Internet beginning approximately one hour following completion of the call. To access the archived conference call by telephone, dial 416-849-0833 or 1-855-859-2056 and enter the pass code 74551438 followed by the pound key. The telephone replay will be available until Tuesday, May 15, 2012 at midnight. To access the archived conference call as an MP3 via the Internet, go to http://tucowsinc.com/investors.

About Tucows

Tucows is a global Internet services company. OpenSRS (http://opensrs.com) manages over twelve million domain names and millions of value-added services through a reseller network of over 12,000 web hosts and ISPs. Hover (http://hover.com) is the easiest way for individuals and small businesses to manage their domain names and email addresses. Ting.com (https://ting.com) is a mobile phone service provider dedicated to bringing clarity and control to US mobile phone users. YummyNames (http://yummynames.com) owns and operates premium domain names that generate revenue through advertising or resale. More information can be found on Tucows’ corporate website (http://tucows.com).

This release includes forward-looking statements as that term is defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In particular, this release includes forward looking statements regarding our expectations as to our financial results and the impact of our consistent growth and leverage. These statements are based on management’s current expectations and are subject to a number of uncertainties and risks that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements. Information about potential factors that could affect Tucows’ business, results of operations and financial condition is included in the Risk Factors sections of Tucows’ filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. All forward-looking statements should be evaluated with the understanding of their inherent uncertainty. All forward-looking statements are based on information available to Tucows as of the date they are made. Tucows assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements, except as may be required by law.

Tucows, OpenSRS, Hover, Ting, and YummyNames are registered trademarks of Tucows Inc. or its subsidiaries.

For further information:
Lawrence Chamberlain
TMX Equicom for Tucows Inc.
(416) 815-0700 ext. 257
lchamberlain@equicomgroup.com

Ting Designates May as ‘Dump Your Contract Month’

Launches Promotion to Buy Consumers Out of Mobile Phone Contracts

TORONTO, May 1, 2012 – Ting, a new mobile phone service provided by Tucows (NYSE AMEX:TCX), today announced the launch of Dump Your Contract Month, a month-long promotion that encourages consumers to break free from their current cell phone contracts.

Every day throughout the month of May, one sweepstakes winner per day will receive compensation for the early termination fees tied to their current cell phone contract (up to $300 per prize). There’s a limit of one entry per person, per day, but everyone can enter once each day for a chance to win. All U.S. residents aged 18+ that are currently in a mobile phone service contract can enter the sweepstakes. Just complete and submit the online entry form at ting.com/dyc.

“Every day, we hear people lament they are ‘stuck’ in a contract with a mobile provider that they would prefer to leave.” said Elliot Noss, CEO of Tucows. “In fact, for years, Americans have unquestioningly accepted financing on phones, long-term contracts, overage penalties and other conditions that are not truly in their best interest. We want to expose these practices and introduce a better approach.”

Ting has no contracts, no overage penalties and no hidden fees. Minutes, messages and megabytes are each billed separately and customers only pay for what they use. Businesses and families can have unlimited devices on one account and can pool together usage for greater savings. Ting offers a clear, usable website and smart, accessible people that are empowered to solve problems. Ting’s wireless network services are provided on the Nationwide Sprint Network.

“Dump Your Contract Month is a fun way to give just a few folks that taste of freedom,” said Noss, “and maybe get thousands to rethink their current relationship with their mobile phone provider.”

About the Sweepstakes

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Runs 5/1/12 to 6/1/12 with 31 daily drawings. Total maximum ARV of all prizes: $9,300. Open to U.S. residents, age 18+, who are in a mobile phone service contract. Void where prohibited. To enter and for details, see Official Rules at http://ting.com/dyc/rules

About Tucows

Tucows is a global Internet services company. OpenSRS (http://opensrs.com) manages over 11 million domain names and millions of email boxes through a reseller network of over 12,000 web hosts and ISPs. Hover (http://hover.com) is the easiest way for individuals and small businesses to manage their domain names and email addresses. Ting (http://ting.com) is a mobile phone service provider dedicated to bringing clarity and control to U.S. mobile phone users. YummyNames (http://yummynames.com) owns premium domain names that generate revenue through advertising or resale. More information can be found on Tucows’ corporate website (http://tucows.com).

For further information:
Media Contacts:

Emily Harris
Global Strategy Group
212-235-6239
eharris@globalstrategygroup.com

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