This is a significant and exciting development for the UAE, and will be the first of its kind in the region. The UAE TAM project will involve the placement and use of a device known as a PeopleMeter in a selected number of residences across the UAE in order to collect statistics and information regarding audience viewing preferences.
The objective of this project is to develop a deep and detailed understanding of UAE TV viewership to ensure that the commissioning and development of television programming and television advertising in the UAE are strategic in their design and execution. In addition, the project aims to generate ratings that will be used as a currency of trade for the media industry.
The National Media Council will issue the necessary and appropriate regulations to establish the UAE TAM project, issuing any necessary licences for the ratings company (which will be known as the Emirates Media Measurement Company) to implement the UAE TAM project and generally regulating and supervising the company.
Announcing the agreement, the National Media Council stated: ‘This project represents a milestone for the media industry in the UAE. Audience information will represent a crucial key indicator to the broadcasters as well as the advertising community. Advertising revenues are driven by audience estimates and major investment decisions in programmes, This will provide a base of information for decision making on advertising campaigns. Providing audience measurement geared to meeting the highest quality standards will enable the UAE TV Industry to make its best business decisions.’
‘The project will result in efficient decisions concerning UAE television programming - its content, its carriage, and its promotion - being guided by a widely shared and broadly supported strategy that is constantly fed with information drawing on a deep and detailed knowledge of the attitudes and behaviour of the UAE viewing audience,’ the NMC said.
The stakeholders of this project, the NMC, Abu Dhabi Media Company, Dubai Media Incorporated, Sharjah Media Corporation, and Etisalat, initiated this project through an RFP process, where proposals for television audience measurement solutions were sought from industry leaders.
These proposals were intensively evaluated on their technical and commercial aspects, and Kantar Media was determined as best able to meet the unique needs of the UAE market environment.
The stakeholders of this project, the NMC, Abu Dhabi Media Company, Dubai Media Incorporated, Sharjah Media Corporation, Etisalat and du, (which will be represented by Etisalat), will shortly form the ratings company, Emirates Media Measurement Company, an independent operating company which will oversee the implementation and deployment of this five-year project.
Mansoor Khan, the Director, International Developments with Kantar Media stated, ‘We feel that over the years Kantar Media has demonstrated a commitment to push back the boundaries of audience measurement. and has continued to develop the PeopleMeter system and can draw on extensive experience around the world. The measurement systems adopted must be able to cope with the myriad ways in which television can be consumed in the digital era, but will also need to have the flexibility to cope with future developments. We are very enthusiastic, confident and will be extremely committed that the world’s best technologies and resources will be deployed to a TAM service that UAE will be proud of.’
The National Media Council expressed gratitude to the TRA, Etisalat, Du as well as the various media organizations in the UAE for their support and valuable contribution to the success of the project since the work started.
‘Their cooperation was pivotal to the completion of the preparatory phase and lays the grounds for achieving the desired results’, NMC said in a statement.
A press conference regarding the UAE TAM project will be held at a date and time to be announced later.
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