Nielsen adds $6 mil boost to NetRatings

Company ups its stake in Web researcher to 14%

Nielsen Media Research has beefed up its Internet measurement biz, investing an additional $6 million in NetRatings Inc., bringing its total stake in the Milpitas, Calif.-based Web researcher to $9 million, or 14%.

NetRatings launched the Nielsen/NetRatings Internet measurement service in March.

Nielsen also has the option to purchase another 1.1 million shares of NetRatings before January 2002, which would give the company an 18% stake. It has the option to excise an additional 12 million warrants, valued at $72 million, through 2005, which would up its stake to 47%.

At the IPO stage, Nielsen Media Research could own 54% of the company.

One Nielsen exec is also expected to join NetRatings’ four board members. A second exec is expected to join the board upon exercise of the 12 million warrants.

NetRatings competes with MediaMetrix in counting the number of visitors to Web sites.

Dutch publishing giant VNU last week said it plans to acquire Nielsen Media Research for $2.7 billion.

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