Kantar appoints second CEO in less than a year

Chris Jansen, who is currently CEO of Cognita, will take up the position from November.

By Sara Nelson

Data, insights and consulting company Kantar will appoint Chris Jansen as group chief executive from November. 

Jansen succeeds Alexis Nasard, who resigned in April after only four months in the job, and left in June. 

Kantar’s previous CEO, Eric Salama, left in February 2020 after 17 years with the business, following the sale of a 60% stake to Bain Capital by WPP, which continues to own the remaining 40%.

Jansen joins the company with more than 20 years of leadership experience in the services sector, from brand building to service delivery transformation, alongside a background in classic marketing and private equity-owned business management. 

Jansen is currently the CEO of Cognita which has, over his six-year tenure, rapidly grown into one of the largest global schools groups.

Prior to that, he led The AA to a stock market flotation in 2014. Jansen held leadership roles as well as board positions at both British Gas and British Airways, having started his early career at Procter & Gamble.

Announcing the appointment, Kantar chairman Adam Crozier said: “Chris’ track record of building great companies, as well as his entrepreneurial and competitive spirit, further strengthens the leadership team we have been building over the past 18 months.

“Chris is a highly people-centric leader who understands the importance a strong culture plays in delivering outstanding results. As we continue on our transformation journey at Kantar, and build on our recent business momentum, Chris’ leadership will be instrumental in fulfilling the ambition that we have for Kantar.”

Jansen added: “Kantar is rightly regarded as a world leader in data and insights-led consultancy and has an outstanding reputation with its clients. This is a result of having outstanding people and I am really looking forward to working very closely with the Kantar team. We have an exciting future ahead, as we continue to embrace advanced analytics and the latest technology in order to better serve our clients.”