The UK market research industry enjoyed higher growth last year than other marketing sectors, according to new figures from the British Market Research Association.

Turnover at BMRA companies increased by 7.1% last year, with the overall industry estimated to be worth £1.15 billion ($1.65bn; €1.88bn). Admittedly this is less than the 9.3% growth enjoyed in 2000, but is nonetheless higher than inflation and comparative increases for sectors such as advertising.

Domestic sales did particularly well, rising 7.4%, while revenues from outside the UK increased 6.3%. In addition, the ten biggest research companies, accounting for 74% of all British sales, registered 6.5% growth.

“The industry overall is showing the kind of growth we would expect, and in fact is showing better returns than other marketing disciplines, such as advertising, which has been one of the worst hit industries in the downturn,” declared BMRA chairman Ivor Stocker.

“We can sound a note of cautious confidence and optimism, as we expect to benefit from the progressive renewal in business confidence, both here in Europe and in the USA.”

Data sourced from: Daily Research News Online; additional content by WARC staff