he global revenue of the market research industry exceeded 40 billion U.S. dollars in 2013, rising year-on-year since it experienced a slight dip in 2009 during the Great Recession. In 2013, Europe generated the largest share of market research revenue at 40 percent, or 16 billion U.S. dollars, very closely followed by North America with 39 percent. Despite contributing the most revenue that year, Europe also saw the largest decline in revenue over the previous year, falling by 1.4 percent.
Global leaders of the market research industry include Nielsen Holdings (U.S.), Kantar (UK), IMS Health Holdings (U.S.), Ipsos (France) and GfK (Germany). Nielsen, headquartered in New York City, was by far the largest market research company worldwide in terms of revenue in 2013. That year, the company’s revenue amounted to approximately 6.05 billion U.S. dollars – almost twice that of its closest competitor, Kantar, with revenues of 3.39 billion.
In the United States, market research industry leaders made almost ten billion U.S. dollars combined in revenue in 2013. The same companies also employed more than 35 thousand people in the U.S. – Nielsen employees accounted for around one third of this figure.
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