Archive | September, 2007

Is measurement industry consolidation good for customers?

6 Sep

I’m sure many of you have followed the spate of consolidation that is sweeping our industry.  Echo Research (research firm) has acquired KWHR Network (measurement firm), which had a global reseller agreement with PRNewsWire (wire/distribution service).  Bacon’s (content aggregator) bought Delhaye (measurement firm) and rebranded as Cision (silly name from expensive branding process/firm).  TNS Media Intelligence (advertising services) bought Cymfony (measurement firm) and cleverly renamed it TNS Media Intelligence/Cymfony (doubt this gem came from expensive branding firm).

While one would hope these transactions have unlocked hidden value for their respective shareholders, it is not clear (yet) how the new organizations will better serve their customers.  Here is one personal example of how consolidation is acting against customer needs.  At MWW Group we have a proprietary measurement platform called Upshot.  For one client we set up a measurement system on Upshot with an XML feed from Bacon’s.  After a period of time we elected to migrate the system to Cymfony.  For consistency we decided to set up the system with a primary feed from Bacon’s.  We were informed by Cymfony that we could not use a Bacon’s feed because Bacon’s, er Cision,  refused to work with Cymfony because it competes with their measurement play, Delahaye.  So, Bacon’s lost a customer in this case.  It seemed misguided and petty to me at the time.  It still does.

Had a different experience?  Is industry consolidation working for or against you?