Nielsen’s private equity owners may be considering a move Lulu abandoned last month. Nielsen, the marketing and research company who introduced the Nielsen Bookscan system to monitor book sales are believed to be considering plans for an initial public offering of shares (IPO) according to reports from Reuters. The Financial Times reported yesterday that Nielsen’s private equity owners were expecting an offering will value the company’s equity and debt at up to $21 billion.
The Nielsen Company is an American marketing and advertising research company headquartered in New York. Nielsen is active in over 100 countries, and employs 36,000 people worldwide. Their total revenues amounted to $5.0 billion in 2008. The Nielsen Company is a privately held global information and media company, and is one of the world’s leading suppliers of marketing information (Nielsen Consumer), media information and TV ratings (Nielsen Media Research), online intelligence (Nielsen Online) and mobile measurement (Nielsen Mobile).
Nielsen BookScan was launched in January 2001 to track book sales at point-of-sale. Up until then only the publisher of a book tracked how many copies had been sold, but rarely shared the data. In January Nielsen reported on book sales for 2009 and last month we reported that they were preparing to sell trade publication, The Bookseller, to its managing director.