VNU To Announce Reorganization; Possibly Change Name to Nielsen (posted 11/8)
VNU Business Media will soon announce that it will re-organize into six market-centric groups, three separate sources told Folio: Alert. The move will include a shake-up at the executive level, with several group presidents;Mark Holdreith from Retail, John Failla from Expositions Jewelry and Entertainment, and Rich O’Connor from Travel and Performance;leaving the company. Michael Parker, president of Marketing/Media & Design, and John Kilcullen, president of the Music & Literary group will stay on, with Kilcullen taking over Film & Performing Arts. Tony Uphoff, previously president of Film & Performing Arts, had left on his own several weeks earlier.
The two operating companies, VNU Business Media and VNU Expositions, will get rolled into one in the new structure, sources say. The company has also appointed a new CFO in Kirk Miller, a veteran of Neilsen Media Research. He replaces Derek Irwin.
VNU Business Media will also likely change its name from VNU to some form of Nielsen, a second source says. "The thinking is if you do an IPO, the name ﾑNielsen’ is more identifiable than ‘VNU,’" a source adds.
Previous Management Considered Too "Risk-Averse?"
New VNU Business Media CEO Bob Krakoff is driving the re-organization, with the blessing of VNU CEO and executive board chairman David Calhoun. "Calhoun is pushing people to walk the talk about cross-VNU synergies," one source told Folio: Alert. "Apparently, he is saying people are too risk averse."
Krakoff applied the same market-centric approach when he was head of Advanstar.
The company may also re-locate back-office personnel at its 770 Broadway office in New York City, due to the high expense of the area. "If you work in back office functions, you may be asked to work somewhere else," a source said.
VNU had not returned calls at press time.