BBM to use Arbitron PPM for Quebec TV market


New York, BBM Canada has selected Arbitron Inc.'s Portable People Meter (PPM) to measure television audiences, including French-language stations, in Montreal and Quebec beginning in the fourth quarter of 2003.

In early 2003, BBM is scheduled to begin deploying Arbitron's PPM system to approximately 875 persons in Montreal and approximately 450 persons in Quebec, creating television audience measurement panels. Both panels are scheduled to begin reporting television ratings in the fourth quarter of 2003.

"BBM recognized the potential of our new technology in December, 1992, when they first acquired the exclusive rights to use the Portable People Meter in Canada," said Pierre Bouvard, president, International and New Ventures, Arbitron Inc.

"Today, one decade later, the PPM technology is ready to be used commercially. The PPM represents a significant step forward over current means of measuring television audiences. The Canadian broadcast and advertising industry can now reap the benefits of a passive and portable audience measurement system."

"The French-language television broadcasters in the province of Quebec have embraced this initiative enthusiastically. It's a testament to their commitment to the marketplace," said Robert Langlois, BBM Vice President for Quebec. "They recognize the business value of using this innovative technology to capture reliable data for their advertising clients."

"Our aim at BBM is to offer the best measurement, with the largest samples, in the most markets in Canada," said Ron Bremner, BBM Vice President of Television. "The cost effectiveness of PPM will help us achieve this goal in Montreal, across the province of Quebec and across the country. Additionally, the roll out of PPM in Montreal and Quebec sets the stage for future testing of electronic measurement of radio ratings in Canada."

The Portable People Meter, developed by Arbitron Inc., is a pager-sized device that is carried by a representative panel of television viewers. It automatically detects inaudible codes that broadcasters, including cable networks, embed in the audio portion of their programming, using encoders provided by BBM and Arbitron. At the end of each day, the meter is placed into a base station that recharges the device and sends the collected codes to BBM for tabulation. The Portable People Meter can simultaneously measure audience exposure to any electronic media television, cable, and radio that can be encoded.

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