comScore is an American media measurement and analytics company
providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and
advertising agencies, and publishers.
1.1 Mergers and acquisitions
2 Data collection and reporting
3 Unified Digital Measurement
4 Campaign measurement
7 Competitors and alliances
8 See also
10 External links
ComScore Networks was founded in July 1999 in Reston, Virginia. The
company was co-founded by Gian Fulgoni, who was for many years the CEO
of market research company
Information Resources, Inc.
Information Resources, Inc. (IRI) and Magid
Abraham, who was also an ex-IRI employee and had served as president
of IRI in the mid-1990s.
On March 30, 2007, comScore made an initial public offering of shares
on the Nasdaq, using the symbol "SCOR".
On February 11, 2014, comScore announced the appointment of Serge
Matta as chief executive officer, effective March 1.
Co-founder Gian Fulgoni, who had been serving as chairman emeritus
since 2014, replaced Serge Matta as chief executive officer on August
10, 2016. On September 2, 2016, comScore received a letter from
NASDAQ that it was in danger of being delisted from the exchange on
September 12 unless comScore filed its 2015 annual report (form 10-K)
and reports for the first two quarters of 2016. On Feb 6, 2017,
comScore announced they would not meet the NASDAQ-imposed deadline to
"complete its financial restatement and regain compliance with
Nasdaq's listing requirements." Because of this missed deadline,
"comScore's common stock may be suspended from trading and delisted
from Nasdaq." If comScore is delisted from NASDAQ and their trading
is suspended, they advise they intend to "be quoted on the OTC
Markets." In November 2017, According to the reports, Gian Fulgoni
co-founder and CEO retired.
Mergers and acquisitions
comScore acquired Media Metrix in a deal announced in June 2002.
Federal Trade Commission
Federal Trade Commission announced it would block a bid
by NetRatings to acquire Media Metrix.
Media Metrix originated as PC Meter, a business unit of market
research company NPD Group, and began publishing statistics in January
1996. In July 1997, it changed its name to Media Metrix. In
October 1998, Media Metrix merged with a rival, Relevant
Knowledge. The company went public as NASDAQ:MMXI in May 1999,
reaching a market cap of $135 million on its first day of trading.
In June 2000, the company acquired Jupiter Communications for $414
million in stock and changed its name to Jupiter Media Metrix. In
the aftermath of the dot-com bubble collapse and associated downturn
in internet marketing spending, Jupiter sold the Media Metrix service
to rival comScore for $1.5 million in June 2002.
In May 2008, comScore announced its acquisition of M:Metrics, a
company that measured mobile content consumption. The transaction
involved a cash payment of $44.3 million and the issue of
approximately 50,000 options to purchase shares of comScore common
stock to some M:Metrics unvested option holders.
comScore announced in October 2009 the acquisition of Certifica, an
internet marketing company based in Santiago, Chile. The acquisition
enhanced comScore’s presence in the
Latin American market.
In February 2010, comScore announced an agreement to purchase the
ARSgroup, headquartered in Evansville, Indiana.
On July 1, 2010, comScore announced that it had acquired the products
division of Nexius, Inc.
comScore then acquired Nedstat (nl) for approximately $36.7
million on September 1, 2010.
In February 2015 comScore US entered into a partnership with Kantar
owned by WPP with an equity stake purchase.
In September 2015, comScore and
Rentrak announced a merger of the two
companies. The move was meant to combine comScore's digital media
measurement capabilities with the TV measurement capabilities of
Rentrak to create a cross-platform media measurement firm, perhaps
capable of challenging
Nielsen N.V. in the media measurement
space. Under terms of the agreement, comScore agreed to acquire
Rentrak in an all-stock deal valued at about $732 million, with
Rentrak shareholders receiving 1.15 shares of comScore per owned share
Rentrak deal closed on February 1, 2016, with the final
transaction being valued at $767.7 million.
Data collection and reporting
comScore maintains a group of users who have monitoring software (with
brands including PermissionResearch, OpinionSquare and VoiceFive
Networks) installed on their computers. In
exchange for joining the comScore research panels, users are presented
with various benefits, including computer security software, Internet
data storage, virus scanning and chances to win cash or
comScore estimates that two million users are part of the monitoring
program. However, self-selected populations, no matter how large,
may not be representative of the population as a whole. To obtain the
most accurate data, comScore adjusts the statistics using weights to
make sure that each population segment is adequately represented. To
calculate these weights, comScore regularly recruits panelists using
random digit dialing and other offline recruiting methods to
accurately determine how many users are online, aggregated by
geography, income, and age. Correcting the comScore data
requires having accurate demographics about the larger pool of users.
However, some comScore users are recruited without being asked to give
demographic information and, in other cases, users may not be truthful
about their demographics. To ensure the accuracy of the data, comScore
verifies its users' demographics during the course of measuring
The corrected data is used to generate reports on topics ranging from
web traffic to video streaming activity and consumer buying
Unified Digital Measurement
With the introduction of Unified Digital Measurement (UDM) in May
2009, comScore implemented a solution to digital audience measurement
that organically blended both panel and census-based measurement
approaches into a single unified methodology. comScore has developed
this proprietary methodology to calculate audience reach in a manner
not affected by variables such as cookie deletion and cookie
blocking/rejection to help reconcile longstanding differences between
the two measurement approaches.
comScore debuted Campaign Essentials in 2010 to measure how digital
campaigns are reaching their audiences. In March 2012, comScore
launched validated Campaign Essentials (vCE), which introduced the
notion of “validated” impressions. In January 2013, comScore
announced that it had evaluated 4,000 campaigns for clients covering
more than 75 advertising agencies.
In 2006, Ben Edelman, a Harvard researcher, alleged that there were
cases where comScore software had been installed on users' computers
without their knowledge. comScore admitted that it was in
discussion with a spyware firm called
DollarRevenue but said that no
contract was ever signed, and that once it realized
distributing comScore's software, months later, it took steps to
prevent the DollarRevenue-distributed software from sending data to
comScore. Stanford IT notes that the monitoring software has been
bundled with file sharing program iMesh without users being aware of
it, although comScore's relationship with iMesh was short-lived
and occurred several years ago.
In the past, the software forwarded users' internet traffic through
comScore proxy servers, provoking criticism about speed
performance. As a result, several universities and banks took
steps to block the proxy servers. In response to these
concerns, comScore no longer uses this technology.
In June 2010, a warning about Mac
Spyware being launched from free
applications like screensavers, from security company Intego was
reported in the media and implicated VoiceFive, Inc. as the source of
certain alleged spyware software.
Additionally, noted blogger and angel investor
Jason Calacanis claimed
ComScore was running an 'extorting ring' by vastly undercounting
publisher traffic numbers and forcing them to pay fees for direct
measurement via a tracking pixel.
ComScore responded to these
allegations by offering their direct measurement tracking pixel to
long-tail web publishers for free.
Magid Abraham, comScore's co-founder, received the 2009 Charles
Coolidge Parlin Marketing Research Award at the 2009 American
Marketing Association Marketing Research Conference.
comScore was selected as a winner of the 2009 Chicago Innovation
Awards for its creative development of AdEffx in October 2009.
In June 2009, comScore and the
GSM Association won the M.E.F. Award
for Business Intelligence in Mobile Media.
comScore was rated as the preferred audience measurement service by
50.4 percent of respondents to the William Blair & Company 6th
semiannual survey of the members of the Chicago Interactive Marketing
comScore was ranked as the 15th largest U.S. market research firm
based on 2008 domestic revenues, growing faster than each of the
largest 25 research firms, according to the 2008 Honomichl Top 50
comScore was selected by
World Economic Forum
World Economic Forum as one of 2007's 47 most
Magid Abraham was honored with the Eighth Annual
Buck Weaver Award for Marketing. The award recognizes individuals who
have made important contributions to the advancement of theory and
practice in marketing science.
In 2014, comScore has been awarded the "New Technology of the Year
Award" by Digital
Analytics Association. With its multi-platform
capability, Digital Analytix is able to unify users across devices and
platforms using comScore’s proprietary browser unification
According to the third-party analysts' Alexa
Internet and SimilarWeb
researches, comScore is one of the best rated marketing
Competitors and alliances
Competitors in internet market research include Alexa, Nielsen Online,
Quantcast, SimilarWeb, SRDS by Kantar Media, Thalamus, and Compete, a
TNS Media company.
In February 2011, The Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement
(CIMM) and comScore announced they were working together to measure
three-screen users and their behavior with content and advertising
across television, Internet, and mobile.
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