ACNielsen Appoints Tomei to Head Up Global Consumer Panel Business

NEW YORK -- ACNielsen, the world's leading provider of consumer and marketplace information, today said Robert I. Tomei has been appointed president of Global consumer Panel Services (CPS), a new strategic business unit formed to better leverage ACNielsen's panel capabilities on a global scale.

"CPS is a critically important business for us and the key to many of our future growth initiatives," said Steven M. Schmidt, president and CEO of ACNielsen, a unit of VNU. "To fully leverage our unmatched panel capabilities, create a new generation of advanced services and deliver the high-value consumer insights our clients need to run their businesses, we believe it's absolutely imperative that we manage this business as a cohesive global unit within ACNielsen."

The formation of the global CPS business unit comes at a time when ACNielsen is dramatically expanding its global panel capabilities. In the U.S., ACNielsen is in the midst of a two-year MegaPanel initiative that will expand its Homescan panel from 61,000 to 125,000 households by the end of this year. The expanded panel, currently at 91,500 households, is enabling the launch of a number of specialty panels, the introduction of new services to measure retailer equity among consumers and their motivations for buying new products, and improved coverage of such fast-growing retail channels as dollar stores, warehouse club stores and other specialty stores.

In Europe, ACNielsen is expanding its Homescan consumer panel from approximately 45,000 to 70,000 households in the key markets of the U.K., France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Portugal. The company also is expanding its consumer panel footprint in Asia Pacific and Latin America.

ACNielsen is also contributing its Homescan consumer panel expertise to a pilot test of "Project Apollo," a joint initiative of VNU and Arbitron that would collect multimedia and product purchase information from a common sample of consumers. The pilot is designed to provide a better understanding of the link between consumers' exposure to advertising messages and their shopping and purchase behavior.

Tomei joined ACNielsen in 1994 from Bristol-Myers Squibb as vice president of Homescan Marketing for both the U.S. and global. In 1999, he was promoted to lead ACNielsen U.S. Marketing, and in 2001, became chief marketing officer for the VNU Marketing Information group and ACNielsen Global. In 2003, Tomei was appointed general manager of the U.S. Homescan business, and asked to lead the MegaPanel expansion initiative.

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