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GfK upbeat on winning bid for national TV audience rating system

GfK Group has high hopes of winning the bid for a national TV audience rating system, which is expected to be called by the Media Research Bureau under the Media Agency Association of Thailand this year.

"We have more than 40 years of experience in audience measurement and we would be proud if we were able to bring this experience to the Kingdom," Daranee Charoen-Rajapark, managing director of GfK MarketWise, said yesterday.

Daranee said her company was closely monitoring the lead-up to this bid. Last month, global and regional heads for media and TV ratings visited and convened with the Bangkok team on this issue.

"We hope that terms for the tender will be made available soon but believe that there must be high clarity, fairness and transparency in the bidding terms and criteria," she said.

Apart from GfK MarketWise, the other two key potential bidders are Nielsen (Thailand) and Video Research International (Thailand).

Daranee said a tender for a TV audience rating system was quite rare, but the Germany-based GfK Group had won two such bids, in Brazil last year and in Saudi Arabia early this year. Under a five-year contract, the group will next year start conducting measuring audience ratings in Brazil, which has a population of 190 million. Saudi Arabia has a 28-million-strong audience.

For the 22 million households in Thailand, the group expects to spend about 2 million to 3 million euros (Bt87 million to Bt130 million) on setting up hardware, software and staffing during the first year of operation.

GfK MarketWise says it offers an array of market-research solutions related to brand and customer experience, mystery shopping, shopper/retail strategy, user experience, and trends and forecasting. The key service covers many sectors such as automobiles, consumer goods, social and public affairs, tourism, financial services, media and entertainment and healthcare.

The consumer-goods sector contributes about 30 per cent of total revenue, followed by automobiles with 25 per cent, social and public affairs with 15 per cent, and media and entertainment with 10 per cent. The rest is from financial, health, retail and tourism services.

Daranee said her company would put more focus on consumer health, media and entertainment and technology.

She acknowledged that the market-research industry was affected by the political unrest and economic downturn in the first half of this year because many companies cancelled or suspended their spending on consumer and marketing research.

However, after the situation improved, the company received a number of projects from SCG Group, PepsiCo, Toyota, Thai Health Promotion, and the Department of International Trade Promotion under the Commerce Ministry. Meanwhile, the company also got requests from GfK Japan and South Korea.

The total outlay for market research in the Kingdom last year ended up at US$166 million (Bt5.34 billion), up 7.62 per cent from 2012. That was lower than the forecast of 10-per-cent growth.

By end of this year, the whole market is expected to see about 5-per-cent growth from last year.


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