Eric Salama announced as Global Chair of Kantar Public

03 October 2022 Consultancy.uk 3 min. read
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Kantar Public has started life as a standalone, evidence and advisory business, with the appointment of a new Global Chair. Eric Salama takes up the position, following the firm’s divestment from Kantar and sale to private equity investor Trilantic Europe. 

Kantar Public’s Global CEO, Michelle Harrison, commented, “I could not be more delighted that Eric Salama is joining Kantar Public as our new Global Chair. We share a desire to deliver better and more sustainable outcomes for the communities which we, and our clients, serve - across public health, sustainability, education and young people, gender and inclusion, economic recovery, poverty and inequality, migration and other complex societal and economic issues.”

Salama was previously Global CEO of Kantar for more than 18 years, during which time he grew the business from the ground up into an operation turning over $4 billion in annual revenues. Part of that process saw the firm first launch the Kantar Public brand. At the inception of the practice, Harrison and Salama worked together, when Harrison was appointed to the Global Board of Kantar.

Eric Salama, Global Chair, Kantar Public

As the pair set out to build the new division in 2016, Harrison noted that “Eric shared the vision for building a world leading global practice for government and public realm clients,” something that he will carry forward in his new role. At the same time, alongside this work, Salama will continue his role as the Chair of the Board of Trustees for Comic Relief, a Board member at Morning Consult and a Board advisor at Phoenix Court VC.  

“After the past two-and-a-half years of the pandemic, no one doubts the central role which Governments and public organisations play in our lives,” Salama said of the challenges facing Kantar Public clients. “The complexity of the problems that need to be actively addressed has never been more acute… Against this background, and with Kantar Public’s strong heritage of uncompromised objectivity and commitment to solving these deep-rooted problems, I had no hesitation in accepting the position as the new Global Chair for Kantar Public. I’m thrilled to be reconnecting with the business.” 

As well as his work with Kantar, Salama has previously served as an advisor to the UK Government on e-commerce and business, and as a non-executive at DFID (The Department for International Development) and has played an integral role in helping many brands expand both locally and internationally. This gives him an important insight into the forces motivating public sector clients. In particular, being ‘purpose-driven’ has become

Salama added, “Governments have a huge challenge in front of them and they cannot fly blind. They must have access to accurate and relevant data and insight to inform critical and agile decision making that will shape our world for the next 50-100 years. And when you know that governments and other policy makers are basing decisions on the data we provide - when you realise that those decisions have a very real human impact - it raises the stakes and our determination and commitment to get it right.”

Launched in 2016, Kantar Public currently employs close to 1,000 people in over 20 countries. In May 2022, its former parent company, Kantar, entered into an agreement for the sale of Kantar Public to Trilantic Europe, a pan-European private equity firm focused on mid-market transactions. The deal, which completed in early September, has seen Kantar Public establish itself as an independent business, and enabled the firm to commit to a campaign of acquisitions to boost its stature.