London. May 13th 2008 – Wander Meijer, Latin America Regional Director for TNS, a world leader in market information and insight, has predicted further robust growth for the market information sector in Latin America. Speaking at the opening of the ESOMAR Latin America 2008 World Research Conference in Mexico City (May 12th to May 14th), Mr Meijer said that the emergence of more stable democracies in the region, improving economies, and the development of modest purchasing power will boost the size of Latin America’s market information industry, broaden the range of services the industry provides, and stimulate consolidation in the sector.
Wander Meijer, TNS Regional Director for Latin America, said: "For the first time, the absolute number of people below the poverty line has been reduced. By some estimates, some 30 million Brazilians and Mexicans have been lifted out of absolute poverty in recent years. These people now get some sort of education, access to healthcare and – while still poor – they buy mobile phones, TVs, detergents, shampoo and increasingly have access to the internet. They are contributing to Latino economies and are beginning to build robust domestic consumption as an engine of economic growth. This in turn is attracting more multinationals to Latin America."
Mr Meijer said that big corporations are calling on the market information industry to invest in the region and to provide consistent market research across Latin America.
Partly in response to this, and also to provide marketing synergies to TNS clients that now address the Americas market as a whole, TNS announced in March 2008 that it is to bring together its North American and Latin American custom businesses in 2009 to create one region called The Americas.
Mr Meijer pointed to ESOMAR data that showed growth in market information for 2006 versus 2005 averaging more than 17%, with the top two markets of Mexico and Brazil achieving 06 vs 05 growth rates of more than 20% and 12% respectively. Market information turnover in Latin America doubled from around US$600 million in 2002 to more than US$1,200 million by end of 2006. TNS estimates show that at the end of 2007 Latin America’s market research sector as a whole had grown to a turnover value of US$1,400 million.
"I think we will see this kind of growth in future years," added Mr Meijer. "All mayor players have been buying companies over the past years to build up their regional networks so they can service their global and local clients more effectively. I expect more consolidation in the sector."
Mr Meijer also predicted that market information firms will do more of their survey work online. In January, TNS announced the launch of its 6thdimension Interactive Research services in Latin America, a move that provides a full range of online research services among both consumer and business communities in the region. In the same month, it also announced a partnership with Livra, the leading online panel provider in Latin America.