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Colmar Brunton Buys Benchmarking Firm

January 21 2010

John Shanahan, founder and CEO of market research agency Colmar Brunton Australia is to become Executive Chairman of the Colmar Brunton Group, as his firm announces the acquisition of benchmarking firm, The Advantage Group International (AGI).

John ShanahanFounded in 1989, Colmar Brunton offers a range of services including new product development research, sensory evaluation, advertising development and tracking, market segmentation, eye-tracking, and customer and employee satisfaction studies, and employs more than 150 consultants and 600 casual/part-time staff in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Perth, Adelaide and Singapore.

As part of his new role, Shanahan will take over as CEO of AGI. He will be replaced by Matt Williamson and Joan Young as joint CEOs of Colmar Brunton Australia.

Williamson, who has worked in the market research industry for 18 years, was most recently Director of YourSource - the group's field and operations subsidiary.

Young has been with the firm for 20 years, in both New Zealand and Australia. In 1988, she established social marketing research agency Colmar Brunton Social Research in Australasia.

'It is an honour for Joan and me - we are both incredibly excited to be leading this dynamic and successful team of people,' Williamson commented.

Colmar Brunton Australia's latest acquisition is based in Toronto, Canada and specializes in sales and customer relationship benchmarking for the FMCG sector. AGI operates in 23 countries, including Australia, and is the authorized provider to many leading manufacturers and retailers.

In addition to providing retailer feedback, the firm offers a suite of complementary research services including best practice benchmarking and shopper research.

'We are honoured to include AGI in our family - it is an outstanding company with an impressive financial track record and an equally impressive culture,' stated Shanahan.

In December, Colmar Brunton MD Peter Harris left the firm to join Vision Critical as MD for Australia and New Zealand.

Web sites: www.cbr.com.au, and www.advantagegroup.com .

All articles 2006-19 written and edited by Mel Crowther and/or Nick Thomas.

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