Kantar Hires Chris Jansen as Its New CEO

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Data and media research business Kantar has named Chris Jansen its new chief executive officer, effective Nov. 1.

Mr. Jansen, who has managed various private-equity-owned businesses, is currently CEO at Cognita, a network of schools around the world. He will likely focus on ramping up growth for the company, which is majority-owned by Bain Capital Private Equity.

Mr. Jansen fills a void created when Alexis Nasard departed in April after only about four months as chief executive. At the time, the company said Mr. Nasard “concluded that the nature of the Kantar role is not the long-term fit he and the board had anticipated.”

Ian Griffiths,

CFO and deputy CEO, has served as interim CEO of the company.

The kind of data that Kantar provides continues to grow in importance for marketers, but research companies are under constant pressure to evolve their offerings as marketers increase their efforts to target and retain consumers who are spending more time online.

The appointment comes two years after

WPP

PLC announced its agreement to sell a 60% stake in Kantar to Bain for $3.1 billion, a deal that valued Kantar at about $4 billion and closed in December 2019.

At the time of the deal, Luca Bassi, a managing director at Bain, said there were opportunities to invest in Kantar’s technology and expand its capabilities.

Kantar reported a 3% increase in revenue to $896 million in the first quarter compared with the year-ago period. The company said it expects double-digit growth in the second quarter.

Mr. Jansen joins without a traditional data and media research background. Before Cognita, he ran the U.K.’s Automobile Association, which sells insurance and other products, and has held leadership and board roles at

British Gas

and

British Airways.

He started his career at

Procter & Gamble Co.

“As we continue on our transformation journey at Kantar, and build on our recent business momentum, Chris’ leadership will be instrumental in fulfilling the ambition that we have for Kantar,” said Kantar Chairman

Adam Crozier

in a statement.

Write to Alexandra Bruell at alexandra.bruell@wsj.com

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