NEWS27 January 2014

Nielsen and comScore reach agreement on LinkMeter

Legal M&A News North America

US — Nielsen has reached an agreement to sell Arbitron’s LinkMeter cross-platform audience measurement technology to comScore, while comScore is to licence TV and radio data collected through Arbitron’s Portable People Meter technology.

The sale and licencing agreements were stipulations laid down by the Federal Trade Commission, which was worried that Nielsen’s $1bn acquisition of Arbitron would lessen competition in the media measurement market.

In particular, the FTC wanted to ensure that initiatives like Project Blueprint – a multi-platform research collaboration between Arbitron and comScore, on behalf of the sports broadcaster ESPN – could continue.

ComScore president Serge Matta said: “This agreement will provide comScore the ability to use a range of Nielsen Audio [Arbitron] assets and technology in current and future multi-platform media measurement efforts and will allow the broader industry to benefit from continued innovation in this area. We look forward to building on our previous innovations in multi-platform media measurement and fulfilling our ongoing commitment to the industry to address critical cross-media measurement challenges.”

The agreement has been submitted to the FTC for approval. But before reaching a decision, the Commission has opened up a public comment period to allow interested parties to have their say on the proposal. Details are online here.