Ipsos Reid

Ipsos Reid

January 25, 2005 06:00 ET

10TH ANNIVERSARY OF CANADA'S MOST RESPECTED CORPORATIONS CEO SURVEY

RBC FINANCIAL SELECTED CANADA'S MOST RESPECTED CORPORATION FOR THE FIFTH TIME AND THIRD YEAR IN A ROW Attention: Business/Financial Editor TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Jan. 25, 2005) - The final votes are in for the tenth annual Canada's Most Respected Corporations survey and for the fifth year and third year in a row RBC Financial Group tops the list as the most admired and respected corporation in Canada as selected by Canadian CEOs. In the history of these surveys only two companies -Bombardier (four) and Northern Telecom (once)- have ever usurped RBC Financial Group as the king of the Most Respected Corporation castle.

But while the top of the heap may remain the same, there have been significant changes among the companies that continue to vie for the throne. For example:

· Research In Motion Ltd. has achieved it's highest ever ranking in overall voting in 2004 - climbing to 2nd place from 6th in 2003, and 8th in 2002;
· Scotiabank has continued a steady climb since 2001 in overall vote getting - climbing from 24th in 2001, to 12th in 2002 to 7th in 2003, to 5th in 2004;
· Manulife Financial Corp. has also continued a steady climb in overall vote getting - going from 41st in 2001, to 18th in 2002, to 15th in 2003, to now 6th in 2004;
· Power Corporation has made a sharp climb since 2003 in overall votes - going from 36th last year to 8th this year;
· Jean Coutu Group is up from 47th last year (2003) in overall votes to 14th in 2004;
· Bombardier has dropped from a 5th ranking in overall votes in 2003 to 16th in votes in 2004;
· Magna International Inc. has also experienced a substantial drop in overall votes, dropping from 10th in 2003 to 23rd in 2004;
· Canadian Natural Resources has come on strongly in the category of "Financial Performance" and now places inside the top ten (ranked 8th) - up from a 20th place vote -ranking last year; and
· Scotiabank has been successful in improving the perception CEOs have about the "Quality of their Services/Products" - climbing in this category from a 25th vote-ranking in 2001, to 20th in 2002, to 18th in 2003, to now a 10th place ranking.

One particularly salient trend in this survey, is the high ranking with which companies in the telecommunications and oil & gas sector have earned in the eyes of Canada's CEOs.

These are the findings from the Tenth Annual Canada's Most Respected Corporations Survey sponsored by KPMG and conducted by Ipsos-Reid. The survey was conducted between September and November, 2004. The survey involved interviews of 263 of the leading CEOs in Canada.

For the overall Honour Roll scoring, a system was used that gave companies three points for each time they were the first mention in a given performance category (there were eight performance categories: Best Long Term Investment Value, Innovation and Product/Service Development, Human Resources Management, Financial Performance, Corporate Social Responsibility, High Quality Service/Product, Corporate Governance, and Customer Service), two points for each second place showing, and one point for a third place mention. An additional three points were attributed to firms cited in a specific question in which CEOs were asked their Top-of-Mind Most Admired or Respected company. The final vote tally for each firm is the sum of these points (a total of nine measures), which determines each company's overall score.

"Track Record" The Most Commonly Mentioned Reason for the Top of Mind Selections . . .

When the CEOs surveyed are asked why they had selected a particular company overall as the most admired or respected the responses were varied in nature. The aggregate unaided responses to this question were: "track record" (36%), "good staff, management or employee relations" (23%), "shareholder or investment value" (22%), "customer service" (20%), "financial performance" (20%), "vision, focus, discipline or good strategy" (19%), "corporate governance or leadership" (17%), "social responsibility, community involvement or corporate citizenship" (17%), "innovative or creative" (15%), "global presence/international expansion" (12%), "honest, trustworthy, or ethical" (9%), "driven or aggressive" (3%), and lastly a "quality product" (2%).

The Most Admired And Respected Corporations By Category As Chosen By Canada's CEOs In 2004…
· Best Long Term Investment Value: RBC Financial Group
· Innovation and Product/Service Development: Research in Motion Ltd.
· Human Resources Management: RBC Financial Group
· Financial Performance: RBC Financial Group
· Corporate Social Responsibility: RBC Financial Group
· High Quality Service/Product : WestJet Airlines Ltd.
· Corporate Governance: RBC Financial Group
· Customer Service: WestJet Airlines Ltd.
· Top-of Mind Most Admired or Respected: RBC Financial Group

For full tabular results, including The 2004 National Honour Roll, The 2004 Regional Honour Rolls, The Winners In The Eight Corporate Gategories, and CEOs Top-Of-Mind Assessments Of The Top Five Most Admired And Respected Corporations In Canada, please visit the Ipsos-Reid News Centre at: http://www.ipsos-na.com/news/

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For more information on this news release, please contact:
John Wright
Senior Vice President
Ipsos-Reid Public Affairs
(416) 324-2900

IN: ECONOMY, FINANCE

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