By Andy Sambidge
Penn Schoen Berland was behind successful election campaigns for Bill Clinton and Tony Blair
Penn Schoen Berland (PSB), the market research firm and electoral pollster famous for advising Bill Clinton and Tony Blair on successful election campaigns, has announced the launch of its first Middle East office.
PR giant ASDA'A Burson-Marsteller said the move to open the PSB office in Dubai "further strengthened its investment in evidence-based communications".
PSB Middle East will offer corporate and government clients a range of services tailored to communications strategy development and brand positioning, including market and competitor strategy, image management, brand and product entry, and advertising and messaging testing, a statement said.
PSB previously provided the fieldwork and market research analysis for the annual ASDA'A Burson-Marsteller Arab Youth Survey.
Founded in 1976 in New York City, PSB, a WPP Group company, has eight offices worldwide and a roster of marquee clients from the corporate sphere, advertising and entertainment, and the government and political realm.
PSB Middle East will work in partnership with ASDA'A Burson-Marsteller with particular focus on the government sector.
Don Baer, worldwide chair and CEO of Burson-Marsteller and chairman of PSB, said: "Evidence-based communications is a core pillar of the Burson-Marsteller Being More brand promise, and it is a valuable resource that our partnership with PSB will deliver to our Middle East clients seamlessly and competitively."
Joseph Ghossoub, chairman and CEO of the MENACOM Group, the regional parent company of ASDA'A Burson-Marsteller, added: "The astonishingly rapid political and economic changes in the region over the last three to four years underline the importance of further integrating market research into PR and communications strategy development, to align campaigns more closely with shifting audience perceptions.
"The MENA market research market is worth an estimated $300 million but there is substantial room for growth if its potential is fully utilised."
PBS Middle East will operate from the head office of ASDA'A Burson-Marsteller in Dubai Media City with a core team of researchers and analysts.
The team will be headed by Sunil John as CEO, in addition to his role as CEO of ASDA'A Burson-Marsteller.