It was announced today that Nielsen CEO Mitch Barns will retire from the company at the end of 2018. Barns also serves as a member of the Board of Directors for Nielsen. Current Chairman of the Board James Attwood has been named Executive Chairman.
In a statement, Attwood said, “Mitch has left an indelible mark on Nielsen — his commitment to integrity, openness, values and engagement will continue to be the heart of this company for years to come. I, along with the rest of the Board of Directors, thank him for his service.”
Additionally, Nielsen reported its fiscal results for the second quarter of 2018. Overall revenue was $1,647 million for the quarter, up 0.2 percent, or down 0.7 percent on a constant currency basis, compared to the second quarter of 2017. Revenues within the Watch segment for the second quarter increased 4.5 percent to $858 million, or four percent on a constant currency basis, compared to Q2 2017. Revenues within the Buy segment for the second quarter decreased 4.1 percent to $789 million, or 5.4 percent on a constant currency basis, compared to Q2 of 2017.
“In the second quarter, we continued to move forward on our multi-year transformations across Watch, Buy, and Operations. However, our progress was not reflected in our financial results, which are disappointing and came in below our expectations, and we are lowering our outlook for 2018,” said Nielsen CFO Jamere Jackson.
Jackson continued, “We are addressing the challenges we face with the greatest sense of urgency and remain sharply focused on our key initiatives to drive value in the long term. Our cost reduction efforts are ahead of schedule and we are accelerating cost-out targets. In Buy Developed Markets, we saw increased pressure in the fast moving consumer goods end markets; however, we made great progress with the Connected System, retailer initiatives, and Total Consumer Measurement. In Emerging Markets, weakness in multinational client spending was offset by growth with local clients. In Watch, ongoing adoption of Total Audience Measurement continued to drive growth. However, the General Data Protection Regulation and changes in the consumer data privacy landscape impacted our growth rates in the near-term as clients and partners grapple with the changes and work to ensure compliance.