Ipsos Acquires MR Division of NPD Group

The Ipsos Group has announced the successful completion of its acquisition of the Market Research Division of the NPD Group. This represents the third major acquisition by Ipsos over the last year, placing the group firmly in the USA’s top 10 market research companies.

The NPD acquisition has been Ipsos’ largest over its 25-year history. With it, the group gains NPD’s HTI Consumer Panel along with three other consumer panels, delivering a total of some 500,000 additional US households. These new households form the basis of NPD’s mail and telephone research, branded ad hoc research products, proprietary marketing models, and Behavioral Tracking services. The Ipsos/NPD deal also includes a 25% stake in the management company operating the NPD Online Panel (a panel of 2 million US Internet users).

The new combined businesses will be known as Ipsos-NPD and will be operated as an independent company within the current Ipsos structure. NPD as such will continue to offer its full range of tracking service and clients will receive assistance from the same NPD staff as before. The continuity of staff means that 500 employees will in effect transfer companies. Ipsos-NPD itself will be headed-up by Rupert Walters, NPD's former Chief Operating Officer.

According to NPD CEO Tod Johnston, "The sale of our custom marketing research business is a win-win for both NPD and for Ipsos. NPD is in the midst of an aggressive repositioning of our business, using the Internet to provide a new level of marketing information never before possible, in a format organized around marketers' core business issues, making it highly actionable. Feedback on the portals already launched or in beta testing has been very positive. This development allows us to focus all of our resources on achieving this transformation more quickly across all of the markets that NPD tracks." Simon Kooyman, Chairman and CEO of the Ipsos Group in North America, added, "With NPD's Market Research Division, Ipsos continues its strategy of acquiring leaders in their sectors and geographic markets. Our access panel research capacities now include 655,000 households in Europe and North America and, in association with NPD, we can reach 900,000 online households and 2 million people. And we will continue investing in high tech solutions for collecting, processing and delivering information to our clients anytime, anywhere in the world."