Global media and information giant VNU is re-locating its executive board to New York in a move expected to be completed by the middle of 2005.

However, VNU stresses it is not a replay of News Corporation's migration to more accomodating corporate climes. The group will remain a Dutch legal entity and a sizeable part of its operations will continue out of its Netherlands-based HQ in Haarlem.

VNU's stateside shuffle is an indication of the key importance of the US as a media research market. The company owns research firm AC Nielsen in its various global incarnations together with many other business information brands such as The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard.

The New York move will result in forty lost jobs at the Haarlem location. VNU has offices in 100 countries and employs 38,000 people.

Says a group spokesman: "The aim of the move is to make communication between the board easier and although it seems extreme, only 20 of the forty jobs made redundant are directly related to the New York relocation."

Data sourced from BrandRepublic (UK); additional content by WARC staff