New York, NY – Nielsen Holdings N.V., a New York-based media company, plans to sell its trade show division, Nielsen Expositions, according to several news sources. The division generated sales of $183 million in 2012, per the company’s annual report.
Bloomberg News reported the move as part of an effort by Nielsen to refocus attention on its core audience measurement business. Last December, Nielsen bought Arbitron, the Columbia, MD radio audience measurement firm, for $1.26 billion.
Nielsen Expositions was the leading independent show organizer of 2011 shows ranked among Trade Show Executive’s Gold 100 with eight shows in that ranking. Among them were the two Outdoor Retailer shows, which ranked No. 34 and No. 42 respectively, and Interbike, which ranked No. 57 among the Gold 100 honorees. Other shows in its portfolio include Imprinted Sportswear and ASD, a general merchandise show.
The second largest independent show organizer among the 2011 Gold 100 shows was Reed Exhibitions of Norwalk, CT, with seven shows among the Gold 100. Worldwide, however, Reed eclipses other organizers with a portfolio more than 500 shows in 39 countries.
Nielsen has retained investment banking firm Credit Suisse Group AG to seek buyers for the division. A Reuters report suggested some private equity firms might be among the bidders. Blackstone Group and Carlyle Group already have a stake in the company.
Nielsen President David Loechner declined to comment on the pending sale.
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