Private Equity Group Takes Ownership of CCNMatthews, a Leading North American Newswire

12/22/2006, 5:09 PM (Source: GlobeNewswire)



TORONTO -- (MARKET WIRE) -- December 21, 2006 -- OMERS Capital
Partners, the private equity arm of one of Canada's largest pension
funds, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire
CCNMatthews, a leading distributor of news releases, multimedia
content and photos to the media and investment communities worldwide,
in an all-cash deal. In addition, Manulife Capital, the private
equity group of Manulife Financial, will assume a minority stake in
the newswire as a portfolio investment.

"This change of ownership is a major milestone for CCNMatthews and is
strategic to our future as we accelerate our expansion," said Michael
Nowlan, president and CEO of CCNMatthews. "OMERS and Manulife's
acquisition of CCNMatthews signals strong confidence in our company
and our employees. CCNMatthews is one of the fastest-growing brands
in the newswire and information distribution industry, and we are
very proud to have such solid financial partners supporting our
growth."

CCNMatthews is the parent company of Market Wire, a full-service
distributor of company press releases and material news in the United
States. CCNMatthews and its subsidiaries will continue to operate
independently under the new ownership structure.

"We view CCNMatthews and Market Wire as industry leaders delivering
exceptional financial results. The opportunity they represent is
consistent with our strategy to invest in strong, well-managed
businesses with the potential to grow," said Paul G. Renaud,
President and CEO OMERS Capital Partners.

About OMERS

OMERS is one of Canada's largest pension plans, with more than $41
billion in assets under management. It provides retirement benefits
to about 365,000 members on behalf of approximately 900 local
government employers across Ontario. More information about OMERS is
available online at http://www.omers.com.

About Manulife Financial

Manulife Financial is a leading Canadian-based financial services
group serving millions of customers in 19 countries and territories
worldwide. Operating as Manulife Financial in Canada and Asia, and
primarily through John Hancock in the United States, the Company
offers clients a diverse range of financial protection products and
wealth management services through its extensive network of
employees, agents and distribution partners. Funds under management
by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were Cdn$381 billion
(US$341 billion) as at September 30, 2006.

Manulife Financial Corporation trades as 'MFC' on the (TSX: MFC),
(NYSE: MFC) and (PSE: MFC), and under '0945' on the SEHK. Manulife
Financial can be found on the Internet at www.manulife.com.

About CCNMatthews and Market Wire

CCNMatthews delivers news releases, multimedia content and photos to
the media and investment communities around the world quickly and
reliably. The Company and its U.S. subsidiary Market Wire serve more
than 6,000 corporate, government, non-profit, union and association
clients, and boast one of the largest media distribution footprints
in North America. CCNMatthews offers the most secure and
cost-effective distribution of real-time news to thousands of media
outlets including AP, Dow Jones, Bloomberg, Reuters, Yahoo!, and
MSNBC, and is the only news release distributor to offer direct
access to the CP (Canadian Press) Wire Network and the CP picture
distribution wire across Canada.

Committed to world-class client service, industry-leading
distribution, technology innovation and market-leading strategic
relationships, the Company serves PR and IR professionals with key
workflow solutions including Easy PR/IR, SEO, Listlogix, and more.

Incorporated in Canada in 1982, CCNMatthews delivers the majority of
news releases issued by publicly traded companies in Canada. For
more, visit www.ccnmatthews.com and www.marketwire.com.

For additional information:
Thom Brodeur
Brodeur
(602) 808-1165
tbrodeur@brodeur.com


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