Vision Critical

Vision Critical

November 02, 2009 08:00 ET

Vision Critical and Angus Reid Strategies to Merge

Integration begins between Angus Reid Strategies' research team and Vision Critical - developers of the market's most adopted interactive research technology.

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Nov. 2, 2009) - Today Vision Critical(R) announced plans to merge Angus Reid Strategies(R) and Vision Critical Technologies in tandem with the launch of a new website. The new Vision Critical marries the strengths of the two sister companies: the research and global panel expertise and consultative service of Angus Reid Strategies with the technology and innovation prowess of Vision Critical.

The combined company will continue to be led by research veteran and CEO Dr. Angus Reid. Board membership and shared ownership will not change as both companies have shared a joint ownership structure since 2006. This next step - merging into one company during Q4 of 2009 - will solidify Vision Critical as a strategic interactive market research company that offers a diverse array of research tools and services to help clients.

The Angus Reid brand will continue to exist as "Angus Reid Public Opinion" - Vision Critical's global practice specializing in the analysis and understanding of "citizen markets" and the public commons. All other research practices and divisions will adopt the Vision Critical name.

"Opting for a unified company means that we're better equipped to solve client problems and gain a better understanding of consumer needs and behaviors," says CEO Angus Reid. "We've got a toolbox that combines interactive technologies, strategic researchers and our own global panels and communities. One of the reasons we've streamlined our technology and research is so we can provide faster and more cost-effective options for clients while engaging respondents in a richer, more interactive way."

Five years ago, Vision Critical employed 30 people. Today, there are more than 300 employees in offices across North America, Europe and Australia - with expansion to Asia planned in 2010. The company now serves 25 per cent of the world's top brands (Source: Interbrand's Best Global Brands List 2009) and according to a leading US research publication, provides the market's most adopted interactive research technology.

The company merger follows Vision Critical's rapid five-year revenue growth culminating in a 75% increase in the first half of 2009. While market research competitors have struggled with the economic downturn, Vision Critical has turned two years of unprecedented Research and Development into a new suite of products that include:

- Sparq Community Panel Platform

- Virtual Shopping

- Customer Satisfaction

- Media Assessment

- Ad Assessment

- Concept Screening

- Package Testing

Further, the company has invested in hiring industry leaders to strengthen its deep expertise in the following research practice areas:

- Community Panel Management

- Consumer Goods

- Retail

- Technology & Telecom

- Financial Services

- Media

- Health

This year, Vision Critical launched two new national consumer and public affairs panels. The company now provides access to insight from hundreds of thousands of consumers around the world via Springboard America, Springboard UK, Angus Reid Forum - and to the rest of the world through partnerships with select global partners. In addition to serving clients directly, Vision Critical offers a Global Partner Program providing other market research companies and consultants with access to the company's award-winning proprietary technology.

Vision Critical's new website (www.visioncritical.com) also moves in the direction necessary to engage the new consumer. "Our site focuses on thought leadership and engagement, with blogs containing analysis and advice from industry experts," says Vision Critical's Senior Vice President of Marketing, Brian Mitchinson. "We took this approach because we believe today's business consumer wants fast access to insights about who we are, what we do and what makes us unique while also having the ability to engage directly with our thought leaders."

About Vision Critical

Vision Critical is a strategic interactive research company combining interactive technology, strategic researchers and global panels. We help companies reduce research costs while generating engaging and insightful relationships with consumers. Vision Critical uses a visual approach, panel technology and our own national panels to embrace markets with the click of a mouse. The company has offices across North America, Europe and Australia and a Global Partner Program that provides other research companies and consultants with access to our technology. Vision Critical is the proud recipient of the Forrester Groundswell Award for generating business results with social media.

Angus Reid Public Opinion is the global public affairs practice of Vision Critical, specializing in the analysis and understanding of "citizen markets" and the public commons. Its Global Monitor website contains extensive data on elections, current findings on public opinion around the world, and an archive of over 20,000 published surveys.

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