Nielsen profit spikes on TV ratings demand


NielsenNielsen Holdings NV reported a 28% rise in Q3 profit due to higher demand for the company’s analytics services and growth in its television ratings business. Revenue rose 2.7% to $1,387 million, up 3.7% on a constant currency basis.

Net income attributable to stockholders rose to $134 million, or 35 cents per share, in the quarter, from $105 million, or 29 cents per share, a year earlier.

“Nielsen’s third quarter represented consistent revenue and profit growth driven by our ongoing commitment to innovation and global expansion,” said David Calhoun, Nielsen CEO. “The quarter also marked the completion of the Arbitron acquisition, which has been rebranded as Nielsen Audio. The integration is progressing smoothly and we are excited about the opportunities that lay ahead as we feel confident the combined company will continue to drive incremental value for customers and shareholders.”

On 9/30, Nielsen completed its acquisition of Arbitron for $1.3 billion, funded by cash on hand and the debt financing. Calhoun said doesn’t plan to release separate Nielsen Audio (formerly Arbitron) revenue numbers. Going forward, Nielsen Audio will be placed in its Watch business, like the company’s TV ratings. He told investors on the call that the combined ratings will continue to drive incremental value for customers and shareholders.

Within the Watch business, revenues increased 3.4% to $516 million, or 4.2% on a constant currency basis, primarily driven by 5.0% constant currency growth in the company’s Television measurement business.

Within the Buy business, revenues increased 2.2% to $871 million, or 3.3% on a constant currency basis. Growth in Information Services was steady, but muted by the year-over-year Walmart comparable bringing constant currency revenue growth to 1.8%. Insights Services grew 8.4% on a constant currency basis, driven by increased client demand for our analytic services versus last year. Total revenue from developing markets grew 7.5% on a constant currency basis, with double-digit growth in many key markets as both global and local clients continued to increase their demand for our retail measurement services and analytics.