With Meritus, GroupM has scaled up its data analytics operations and, more importantly, the entity places India on the world map stronger than ever before in the analytics domain.
The Bangalore-based centre is the single point where data and related queries for GroupM/WPP agencies worldwide will be analysed and interpreted to offer solutions to clients. In addition, Meritus will also work with non-WPP clients. V Balasubramanium will head the venture.
As is known, Meritus Analytics India is GroupM’s Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) unit, which will be launched on January 2, 2006. The entity is the result of GroupM’s partnership with global consulting and technology services company, Covansys India.
The changes that come in with Meritus include Global Analytic Centre (GAC) shifting to Meritus with Sunder M on the forefront. MCI has been renamed as GroupM Insights, which will be fronted by Rama Haresh. Also, ATG has an additional hand to front it in Sandeep Pandey, who comes as National Business Director. In addition to Pandey, Akanksha Jain, who has been brought in from MindShare Delhi, forms the core team of ATG. Pandey comes from Smart Analytics Consulting. They would all be working closely with Balasubramanium.
In addition to GAC, a separate team has been put in place at Meritus to take care of non-WPP clients. “We have over 60 analysts,” said Balasubramanium, adding, “We have taken subject experts on board. This was required as we have entered in three new verticals in addition to the marketing and communication space we are already in. Also, unlike ATG, Meritus will also approach non-WPP clients globally present in these verticals.”
The three new verticals that Meritus will look into are finance, retail and healthcare. “These are all sectors that are fast growing in the market,” explained Ashutosh Srivastava, CEO, GroupM India and South Asia.
Elaborating further on Meritus’ dual function, he said, “For the ATG clients, Meritus will become a backend function continuing its support in analysing and interpreting data to ATG. There is one team to work on that aspect. On the other hand, Meritus will also be talking to other non-WPP clients globally and there it would be both the face and the backend. In addition to ATG clients, Meritus will obviously be working on the Covansys clients as well.”
Speaking more on the Covansys partnership, Srivastava said, “They have the global scale, the raw material in terms of statisticians and other such requisites, and we bring in the domain knowledge and the expertise in taking such a venture forward at the global level. Essentially, we complement each other and hence, we see the partnership offering further value to our clients.”
Speaking about GroupM Asia, CFO, Ashoke Sengupta’s role in the formation of Meritus, Balasubramanium said, “It was not just taking an operation and enlarging it. There was much more to it with the Covansys partnership and Ashoke played a huge role in making this happen.”
The Meritus partnership with Covansys is designed to put together complementary skills from the two leaders in their respective fields to create an enlarged world class KPO operation in this area and further strengthen business partnerships with clients.