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A.C. Nielsen, Sr.

Arthur Charles Nielsen, Sr., founder of the world’s largest market research organization and the principal U.S. television ratings system, died at the age of 82, having lived 11% longer than the average American male.


Born in Chicago in 1897, he was part of the 23% of males age 17 through 23, who attended college during the 1914-1918 period.  Upon graduation he worked as an engineer until 1923 when he started the ACNeilsen Company with an investment from four of his fraternity brothers, who represented less than 10% of the fraternity.  In 1935 he invented the concept of market share and declared that his company had 100% of it.  In 1942 he began started the Neilsen Radio Index to which measured radio audiences, and in 1950, he bought out C.E. Hooper’s radio and television ratings service so that he would control 100% of the market.


He is survived by his wife Gertrude, and five children, three of them females ages 45 to 65 and two of them males ages 45 to 65, 100% of whom said that they loved him and 82% who felt that he was the perfect father.

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