NEWS4 February 2020

Maritz sells mystery shopping arm to Ipsos

Europe M&A News North America

FRANCE – Ipsos has acquired the mystery shopping business of the Maritz group for an undisclosed sum.

Shopping bags mystery shopping_crop

Based mostly in North America, the business has been operating for 35 years and has around 150 employees and retail clients in the oil and gas, automotive and banking sectors. Its revenues for 2019 were $15m.

Employees, shopper panels and client contracts of the unit have been transferred to Ipsos, effective from 31st January.

Nick Mercurio, US leader for Ipsos’ Channel Performance service line, will lead the expanded mystery shopping business in North America. Mercurio reports to Craig Bradley, global leader of Channel Performance.

Didier Truchot, chairman and chief executive at Ipsos, said: “This acquisition will significantly expand Ipsos’ Mystery Shopping offer, improving our operational capabilities and consolidating our North American and global clients. It is a proof of our commitment to meet the needs of our clients who seek better customer service performance across all retail channels. We welcome the experienced researchers, new client relationships, and new capabilities.”

The financial terms of the transaction have not been disclosed.

Mike Sinoway, chief executive, MaritzCX, said: “The opportunity to collect meaningful service improvement insights are higher than ever with mystery shopping, and the future looks bright as our network, technology, and employees join a market leader that is investing significantly in this area.”

In 2018, Ipsos acquired the mystery shopping business of Market Pulse International to expand its operations in the space in Asia-Pacific.