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Yankelovich inks pact with WPP to merge with Henley Centre HeadlightVision

11-January-2008
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Yankelovich inks pact with WPP to merge with Henley Centre HeadlightVision

Yankelovich Holdings Inc. has signed an agreement with WPP to merge with Henley Centre HeadlightVision. Henley Centre HeadlightVision is the consumer trends and futures research and consultancy business of WPP and a unit of Kantar, WPP’s information, insight and consultancy division. The merger will become effective upon the satisfaction of certain conditions.

The aim of the merger is to offer clients a more comprehensive and global insight into consumer change and an ability to act on those insights. Yankelovich, a leading US consumer market research and analytics company, will benefit from access to Henley Centre HeadlightVision’s global trends intelligence network and qualitative research expertise.

Yankelovich and Henley Centre HeadlightVision will be integrated operationally under Sian Davies, currently CEO of Henley Centre HeadlightVision. J Walker Smith will remain President of Yankelovich, while Steve Bodhaine and Kevin Brown will continue in their roles as President, The Segmentation Company, and EVP, Sales, respectively. The core vision and focus of the combined company will be global consumer trends and lifestyle insights and future-facing research and consultancy services to drive value from these insights.

Commenting on the merger, Davies said, “Merging Henley Centre HeadlightVision with Yankelovich creates an unprecedented opportunity to offer consumer trends research and consultancy services on a truly global basis. We are seeing major shifts in consumer attitudes and lifestyles as BRIC and other fast growing economies expand, as health, well-being and environmental concerns gather pace globally, and as consumers use new media in innovative ways. The combined capabilities of Yankelovich and Henley Centre HeadlightVision will enable our clients to embrace the future and drive actionable insight and inspiration.”

Yankelovich and Henley Centre HeadlightVision will be based in Chapel Hill, NC, New York, London, Delhi and Mumbai, with plans to foray into China already underway. Their combined capability will bring together extensive expertise across many industries, including consumer packaged goods, financial services, media and telecommunications, travel and leisure and the public sector, as well as leading edge practices in health, sustainability and multicultural marketing.

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