Millward Brown acquires Irish Marketing Services Group

19 Apr 2002

Millward Brown, the world leader in brands and communications research, has acquired the Irish Marketing Surveys (IMS) Group. Founded in 1963 by the late John Meagher, the group operates three major companies: Irish Marketing Surveys (to be rebranded Millward Brown IMS) and Lansdowne Market Research, both based in Dublin; and Ulster Marketing Surveys (to be rebranded Millward Brown Ulster) which is Belfast based.

The IMS Group is the largest full service market research organisation in Ireland with an enviable track record having more than trebled its revenues over the past decade and, for the year ended 2001, had a turnover of €17million.

The group employs 130 people full time in Dublin and Belfast. Clients include a wide range of leading public and private companies, government departments and semi state bodies. The Group also works extensively with most of the major multi-national businesses with interests in Ireland. In the past year the IMS Group carried out over one thousand separate research assignments.

Commenting on the acquisition, Sharon Potter, Joint MD of Millward Brown UK said: "We are delighted to be joining forces with such a respected company and to be bringing a highly professional business with great people into the Millward Brown family. Ireland is a rapidly expanding market where we already conduct over 4 million Euro of business from our UK operation, mainly for global clients. Having a local presence will enable us to extend Millward Brown products and services to Ireland via a team with a great track record, as well as building on existing local business".

Eamonn Williams, Group Chief Executive of the IMS Group, and Managing Director of Irish Marketing Surveys commented: "We are very excited to be joining the Millward Brown Group. We recognise that users of research are consolidating and that multinational clients are increasingly demanding consistent international data. We were therefore keen to find an international partner to facilitate a continuation of the impressive growth rates that we have achieved to date. Millward Brown is a perfect fit. It brings areas of specialization and branded techniques to the IMS Group alongside an established presence in over 30 countries around the globe".

Robin Addis, Chairman of the IMS Group added that "an overriding motivation for us was to find a natural partner for growth – one that would allow us to retain our culture. In Millward Brown, we are confident that our staff will feel we have found that partner". The existing structure and local management personnel of the IMS Group will continue unchanged.