Interpublic Group (IPG) has acquired the Acxiom Marketing Solutions (AMS) business unit in a cash transaction valued at US$2.3 billion, or net US$2.0 billion after consideration of an acquisition-related benefit of the tax step-up. Acxiom Marketing Solutions provides data management and data strategy services as well as analytics and audience creation services.
Dennis Self and Rick Erwin will continue to serve as co-presidents of AMS, which will remain a stand-alone division, aligned with IPG Mediabrands. The two will be reporting into Arun Kumar, chief data and marketing technology officer, IPG.
The company has 2,100 employees including 1,600 data specialists, over 2,000 clients, access to hundreds of marketing databases. According to a release, its capabilities allow brands, media and technology partners to harness data to improve every customer interaction, including:
Data management services – taking multiple marketing data and related technologies, including databases, data lakes, ad platforms, and combining them into a simple unified data layer with a complete omnichannel view of customers.
Data strategy services – providing clients with a prioritized roadmap for optimizing the use of data and marketing technology.
Analytics services – delivering independent services for measuring marketing ROI, attributing impact, deepening consumer insights and predicting consumer behavior.
Audience creation services – creating ideal audiences through look-alike modeling, advanced scoring, custom segment creation and traditional packaged data offerings.
However, the transaction does not include the LiveRamp business of Acxiom Corporation.LiveRamp is an identity resolution provider offering data onboarding.
According to a release, IPG’s media, creative, marketing services and analytics capabilities, global scale and consumer insights will merge with AMS’s expertise in data management to expand further into data-driven marketing. With the acquisition, the Acxiom brand name will become part of the IPG portfolio.
“In a world where everything is becoming data-driven, Acxiom Marketing Solutions offers the deepest set of capabilities for helping companies navigate the complexity of creating personalised brand experiences across every consumer touch-point,” Michael Roth, IPG’s chairman and CEO said, adding that it was an “unrivaled offering”.
“Combining AMS with a range of IPG assets will help us shape the future of our industry. Acxiom’s leadership on data ethics is second to none, its business is solid and growing, and it has long played a foundational role in the marketing ecosystem,” he said. He added that the two have been working closely over the last year and see a fit in cultures.
“Everyone knows how valuable data is, but for most businesses it remains an under-leveraged asset. There also remains a great deal of uncertainty on how best to combine data with the creation and delivery of marketing messages. Our goal is to solve for those opportunities,” Philippe Krakowsky, IPG’s chief strategy and talent officer and chairman and CEO of IPG Mediabrands said.
“While marketing and information technology are increasingly converging within client organizations, service providers remain bifurcated. With the skills and capabilities that AMS brings to our portfolio of companies, we can offer clients end-to-end solutions that we believe will change the way in which we work for brands, and accelerate the onset of outcome-driven marketing,” he added.