AC Nielsen buys MMS to help target Europe

AC Nielsen, the consumer research giant, has bought Media Monitoring Services, its main UK rival for advertising measurement services, for an undisclosed sum.

AC Nielsen, the consumer research giant, has bought Media

Monitoring Services, its main UK rival for advertising measurement

services, for an undisclosed sum.



MMS, which is a privately owned company, tracks advertising spend across

the print, television, radio, direct mail, cinema and outdoor channels

for media companies, agencies and advertisers. Through its acquisition,

AC Nielsen will consolidate its position in media research across

Europe, while MMS clients will have access to global research data.



Charles Fulton, managing director of MMS, who will head the integrated

Nielsen MMS operation in the UK, said: ’The combination of MMS and AC

Nielsen Media International provides clients with the best of both

worlds - unmatched local media coverage and the broadest international

reach in the industry.’



The management team at MMS will remain unchanged. Fulton will report to

AC Nielsen UK’s managing director, Mark Hallam.



Steven Yung, president of AC Nielsen International, emphasised the

convenience of a one-stop shop that the merger will bring to companies.

’The services will not only be local, but regional and global as well,

and they will have a holistic view of how advertising works with

information on the internet, TV, radio, outdoor and direct marketing

media.’



AC Nielsen hopes that the acquisition will strengthen its position in

tendering for the UK BARB contract, which will be awarded during the

first quarter of next year. The company has also invested almost pounds

30 million in an e-ratings system that has been set up to create an

international standard for measuring web traffic.



Yung, who said he would commit to a multi-million-pound investment in

the UK operation, explained that he wanted to create ’a big company with

the soul of a small company, which is capable of being nimble’.



AC Nielsen provides media measurement services in over 40 countries,

monitoring more than 75 per cent of the world’s advertising spend

outside the US.



Yung claimed: ’We are in a unique position to be the key insights

provider to the dollars 400 billion global advertising industry.’



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