WPP has started this month the sale of Kantar. Kantar’s sale starts with an auction led by Goldman Sachs. Banking sources told Reuters they are lining up more than 2 billion Euros in debt to finance the acquisition. First-round bids are expected to be placed on an auction process this month.
Kantar is a research, data, insights and consulting company. Kantar employs 30,000 persons worldwide. Kantar is being allowed by walled gardens, like Facebook and Youtube, to do the independent measurement for brands.
According to The Drum, last month, the CEO of WPP, Mark Read, said that WPP wants to retain between 25%-40% of Kantar, in an ideal scenario. “Maybe emotionally I would have preferred to keep it inside WPP but rationally there’s a lot to do and this is the right way to go about releasing that value,” said Read, speaking at Advertising Week Europe.
A few weeks ago, Kantar announced it will now operate all its businesses under the single brand name of Kantar.
As a result, Kantar Consulting, Kantar Health, Kantar IMRB, Kantar Media, Kantar Millward Brown, Kantar Public, Kantar TNS, Kantar Worldpanel, Lightspeed and all country-specific brands will no longer exist.
Kantar CEO Eric Salama said: “The change in our branding reflects the operational changes already happening across our company, and is driven by a desire to achieve simplicity, scale and impact for our clients.
“This one change will make Kantar easier for clients to understand and work with. Removing barriers to co-creation and purposeful collaboration across our organisation will make it easier for Kantar to build platforms and offers globally that address our clients’ most pressing needs.”
The company insisted there would be no redundancies as a result of what it described as “purely a branding exercise”. A spokesperson said individual CEOs would retain their job titles although what these titles would be was not clear, as the names for the new divisions, in place of the separate businesses, had not been decided.