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Next stage of procurement process

30 April 2007

BARB (Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board) has entered Stage Two in its formal tender process for new research contracts required from 2010. Seven separate companies have been issued invitations to tender.

Twenty-four proposals from 12 different organisations were received in December 2006 for the first stage of the process – the ‘request for proposals’. Final tenders are anticipated to be received in July 2007 and new contracts are expected to be awarded at the end of the year.

Bjarne Thelin, BARB’s Chief Executive commented “Suppliers are being encouraged to continue to develop their proposals to ensure that the BARB service remains progressive. We have been, and will continue to be, actively assessing the feasibility and integrity of proposed techniques, including lab testing where appropriate. We also plan to field test some elements in the coming months.”

Bidders are expected to demonstrate an ability to respond to the changing media landscape, such as providing the option to report and track non-linear content, and offering flexibility for the future. Maximising respondent participation is a key requirement.

As a primary goal BARB is seeking to cover televisual content wherever it is consumed within the home including, if feasible, via PCs and transportable devices. Quality control, functionality, continuous provision of service and appropriate methodologies are fundamental elements.

BARB intends to commission a service to ensure that BARB Gold Standard measurement – the industry standard – retains its current high regard and currency status.

Digital switchover is scheduled to complete in the early years of the new BARB contracts and needs to be considered by the successful suppliers. The service must reflect analogue and digital worlds at the start of the contracts, and the progression towards a digital-only world.

If valued by the UK industry, approaches may be engaged which enable out-of-home viewing to be captured as a possible additional goal.


Notes to Editors:

BARB was set up in 1981 to provide the industry-standard audience measurement service for television broadcasters and the advertising industry. It is a not-for-profit limited company owned by BBC, ITV, Channel 4, five, BSkyB and the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising.

BARB provides in-home TV viewing measurement for the UK. This is obtained from a panel of 5,100 homes. These homes return data from around 11,500 viewers. Viewing from visitors to the home is included (Guest Viewing). Viewing figures are available to subscribers the morning after transmission. VCR and PVR playback is incorporated within 7 days of transmission (Consolidated Viewing). Audiences are reported on a minute-by-minute basis.

The panel design is representative of the whole of the UK. People are recruited from all sectors of the population. All viewing environments in the home are represented. Multiple TV sets are measured. BARB measures both analogue and digital delivery via cable, satellite and terrestrial distribution.

Distributed by Brown Lloyd James on behalf of BARB.

Media calls to Sheila Thompson or Debbie Coleman on 020 7591 9610 (; )