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VMS Goes Out of Business

A notice is now on the VMS homepage stating that the media monitoring and analytics company has filed for Chapter 7 liquidation today with the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

“The decision has been made after exhaustively evaluating many different options and with sadness for our loyal staff and customers,” the statement reads.

All employees have been terminated, effective today. We placed a call to the company and got no answer. Cision has already put a system in place to transition VMS customers.

Over the past year, the company has announced a number of staff changes, including layoffs last summer, a new president, and a new head of sales. And just over two weeks ago, the company announced a partnership with Media Monitors, an Asia-Pacific media intelligence company.

Cision president and COO Peter Granat told us they have set up a system to help VMS customers. A “hot desk” has been established with an email address (broadcast@cision.com) and phone number (866.639.5087).

“We will have staff working through the weekend to help clients get ready for Monday morning,” he told us.

Granat also told us that the company has already gotten calls from VMS employees seeking jobs.

“We will be bringing on staff to help with this and have been staffing up over the summer. We’ll be adding to the teams that support broadcast accounts as well,” Granat said.

“Obviously it’s a sad day for the employees involved in the industry. But Cision is now uniquely positioned with a filtered broadcast service plus HD. Yes it is an opportunity for  Cision and other players in the industry, but that’s not what we’re focused on,” he added. Universal Information Services also says it’s prepared to help former VMS customers.

For its own part, Granat said that Cision has completed a transition to a digital strategy that was nearly three years in the making. The company has moved away from manual services, is showing organic growth in the U.S., and a return to profitability in Europe. (The company reported Q2 earnings last month.)

Granat said the company is in a “much better position” to handle the “convergence of PR and marketing” and is optimistic about the future.

Critical Mention, another media monitoring company, has also launched a special program for VMS customers, offering a 30-day all-access pass to the CriticalMention.com Real-Time TV and Radio Intelligence Platform. You can check that out here.

*Update: PRWeek expands on the news of VMS’ closure. During a conference call, company execs explained that Capital One would no longer finance the company and they were forced to shut down. The company was hurt by competition and 200 employees have lost their jobs.

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