BuzzMetrics buys Intelliseek as VNU invests in venture

NEW YORK: Backed by VNU, word-of-mouth research firm BuzzMetrics has announced that it will acquire competitor Intelliseek to form Nielsen BuzzMetrics.

NEW YORK: Backed by VNU, word-of-mouth research firm BuzzMetrics has announced that it will acquire competitor Intelliseek to form Nielsen BuzzMetrics.

In September 2005, Israeli firm Trendum, which counted VNU as an investor, acquired BuzzMetrics. VNU will now have a 50.1% interest in Nielsen BuzzMetrics.

Separately, a group of private equity firms last week offered to purchase VNU for $8.9 billion.

Jonathan Carson, CEO of Nielsen BuzzMetrics, said one of the goals of the new company is to create a standard for word-of-mouth measurement.

"With the type of move we were looking to make... the real goal here was to create a leader," he said. "Intelliseek was a natural fit."

Mike Nazzaro, former president and CEO of Intelliseek, will serve as president and COO of Nielsen BuzzMetrics.

He cited VNU's increased investment as a positive sign for the venture.

"Nielsen's involvement in it helps validate the whole space," he said.

He added that Intelliseek and BuzzMetrics would be able to integrate their operations smoothly, as the two companies tend to focus on different industries. BuzzMetrics has cornered the healthcare market, while Intelliseek has a strong presence in the electronics and automotive industries.

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