NEWS29 July 2009

Ipsos inks deal to buy MRBI from WPP

Europe M&A

IRELAND— Ipsos is to acquire Market Research Bureau of Ireland (MRBI) from WPP, which was ordered to sell the business following its takeover of TNS.

The European Commission required the sale to ease competition concerns. It had decided that WPP and TNS’s combined strength in Ireland “would enable it to increase prices and lower the quality of the provided service”.

Ipsos’s acquisition of MRBI will require EC approval, as it already owns Mori MRC in the country. However Ipsos president Didier Truchot (pictured) said today: “We are delighted to welcome MRBI’s team, whose talent, experience and long-lasting relationships with local clients will greatly benefit the Ipsos group.”

MRBI was founded in 1962 and was acquired by TNS in 1996. It employs 34 full-time staff and has a particular focus on opinion polling, media audience measurement and stakeholder management research.

Agency boss Damian Loscher said Ipsos’s strengths in public opinion, media, customer loyalty and communications research would create “obvious synergies” for MRBI’s business.