Ratings Empire Builder A.C. Nielsen Jr. Dies

His father led the way to the creation of the first TV audience measurement system, while Nielsen Jr. oversaw the company's growth.

NEW YORK - Arthur C. Nielsen Jr., who transformed the company founded by his father into a global market research and TV ratings powerhouse, died on Monday,the New York Times reported.

He died at age 92 in Winnetka, Ill. where he lived most of his life. He had Parkinson’s disease, the paper cited family members as saying.

His father who founded the A.C. Nielsen Co., led the way to the creation of the first TV audience measurement system in 1950, while Nielsen Jr. moved the company into new business areas, the Times said.

The son then became president of A. C. Nielsen in 1957 and chairman in 1975, overseeing its growth. Under his leadership, the firm transformed from a business generating less than $4 million a year in revenue to one with annual revenue of more than $680 million, according to the Times.

He stepped down from active leadership in 1983 to focus on the role of chairman emeritus and help broker the sale of A. C. Nielsen to Dun & Bradstreet Corporation for $1.3 billion a year later. It ended up being sold to new owners down the line.

The company is now known as publicly traded Nielsen Holdings. The Hollywood Reporter was part of a privately held predecessor company.

The Times highlighted that to this day, in the TV business, ratings are often simply referred to as "the Nielsens."

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