Gfk Group to launch research business for media in the UK

The Gfk Group, a supplier of quantitative media research, is launching a media-research business in the UK.

Gfk Media, which will compete against the likes of RSMB, Ipsos-RSL and Taylor Nelson, will offer research services to advertising agencies, broadcasters and advertisers. Its first major project is the co-ordination of Rajar's testing of Radiocontrol, a new system of radio and television measurement.

The new company will be run by Nick North and Tanya Koshechkina. North was previously the marketing director at the research group Roy Morgan International. Koshechkina was the international research divisional director at the sister business Martin Hamblin Gfk.

As well as working directly for agencies and advertisers in supplying quantitative research, Gfk plans to pitch for further media measurement such as Barb. It currently supplies industry-standard measurement systems for the TV industry in seven European markets, including Germany and France.

The company's aims are to measure exposure of clients' communications strategies across all media and to improve media accountability by developing electronic measurement technology.

Gfk is already established in the UK as a provider of information on consumer purchasing of technology hardware.

North said: "We are looking to provide services across the entertainment industry and beyond to advertisers because we have a strong consumer panel business. We can combine consumer-purchase information with media-usage behaviour to create a strong combined product."

Gfk's work with Rajar will focus on the testing of a wristwatch-based system capable of registering listening habits without relying on listeners to recall their own listening patterns.

German-based Gfk offers media research in 22 countries. As well as broadcast research it offers measurement of print readership, measurement of outdoor and internet usage. It is the fifth largest international market research company.