Y&R announced the creation of BAV Group today, consolidating business arms BAV Consulting, BAVLabs and BAV study under one operation.
Y&R first launched its proprietary BAV study in 1993, designed to function as a diagnostic and prescriptive model by amassing data on consumer brand perceptions. BAVLabs locations serve as hubs for regional Y&R agencies around the world, while BAV Consulting formerly functioned as a stand-alone strategic brand consultancy. BAV Consulting CEO John Gerzema is leaving his role to pursue an unspecified opportunity.
Michael Sussman, who formerly served as president of BAV Worldwide, overseeing both BAV study and BAVLabs, will lead BAV Group as CEO. He will continue to report to Y&R global CEO David Sable.
“BAV is core to Y&R’s strategic approach and remains an unparalleled resource in the industry. In consolidating its resources and people, we will unleash its full power for all our clients,” Sable said in a statement. “It gives me particular pleasure to put Michael Sussman at its helm. Michael is not only a brilliant researcher and strategist (with a PhD in applied psychology), he has been an integral part of BAV’s development and growth for close to 20 years, and an invaluable strategic counsel to clients around the world.”
David Roth will serve as BAV Group’s chairman, in addition to his current duties as CEO of WPP global retail unit The Store, tasked with “facilitating collaborations between Y&R’s BAV Group and WPP’s BrandZ, developing and marketing new products, services and data insights that leverage both studies,” according to a press release.
“We are … excited about the opportunity to work with David Roth on BAV initiatives across the WPP Group,” Sable added. “We are grateful to John for his many contributions, including Best Countries, and look forward to seeing his next chapter.”
BAV publishes the annual Best Countries Report in collaboration with U.S. News & World Report and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.