Nielsen's Whiting Moves To Quell Concerns Over VNU Takeover
"We expect the transition to new ownership will be seamless and transparent from your perspective," Whiting assured, adding that Nielsen's priorities would not change and that it remains committed to its ambitious plan to measure video content across all platforms, not just television.
In previous letter sent March 1 to clients, Whiting vowed to provide details of that measurement plan "within 90 days." On Monday, she reaffirmed Nielsen's commitment to that plan, writing, "We recognize, for example, that our clients want to know more than what programs consumers are watching, or how, where and when they are watching them. Our clients want to know about the quality of that engagement, and they want to understand its impact in the marketplace. Our priority, therefore, is to "follow the video" by delivering measurement solutions."
Although she did not explain specifically how VNU's buyout might impact those plans, Whiting described the transaction as a "big advantage," implying it would create "an increased effort to bring together our marketing, media and entertainment assets on your behalf."
However, it was unclear how VNU's new ownership would do that. Buyout firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts is one of the lead investors in the consortium, and is known for breaking companies up, not putting them together. Its last big media company ownership was a controlling stake in Primedia.