The Direct Marketing Association Monday announced three initiatives to strengthen its offerings for members involved in e-mail marketing. The DMA said it has acquired the Email Experience Council (EEC), an organization that strives to bring thought leadership and problem-solving capabilities to the e-mail marketing community. The DMA is merging its Email Marketing Council (formerly the Council for Responsible Email) and EEC. The combined council, which will operate under the Email Experience Council name, includes more than 400 participants, including marketers and vendors. The DMA also announced an agreement with Return Path to launch an E-mail Reputation Registry this summer to help e-mail marketers better navigate the complexities of authentication. Also, the DMA's Research and Market Intelligence team said it will publish an anthology of white papers on expert-level practices and how to implement them, and will focus its next Creative Series report on e-mail.
G2 Worldwide buys Refinery
WPP Group's G2 Worldwide, a digital marketing services agency, announced it has acquired Refinery, a 12-year-old interactive agency in Philadelphia. Refinery's capabilities will be integrated with G2's North American business unit, G2 Interactive, according to G2, and will operate under the leadership of G2 Interactive President John Paulson. The Refinery brand will be phased out.
InfoUSA announces management changes
InfoUSA has announced several management changes. Amit Khanna has been named president of the Database and Technology Group. He was previously president of the Database Group. Tim Buechler, senior VP-distribution services, has added general manager of the Database Group to his title. Rakesh Gupta, previously president of national accounts, is now president of the Enterprise Sales Group, which includes national accounts, OneSource International and the license division. DJ Thayer has been named president of the Small and Medium Business Group; he was previously exec VP of the Small Business Group. Alan Heckart, corporate controller and chief accounting officer, will take on additional responsibilities as CFO of the Services Group. Ron Hanzlicek, previously controller of the Small Business Group, has become CFO of the Market Research Group. Monica Messer, president-COO of the Database Group, has resigned, effective Sept. 26, after 25 years with the company.
Omnicom group acquires Expert
Diversified Advertising Services, a unit of Omnicom Group, has acquired Expert Communications, a direct response agency that specializes in one-to-one marketing for such highly regulated industries as financial services, health care, telecommunications and utilities. Expert Communications will operate as part of STAR Marketing Group, a division of Omnicom that includes a network of customer experience management agencies and specialist services such as CRM, interactive, direct, digital and search media. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Draftfcb Healthcare starts Connect Tech
Draftfcb Healthcare announced the formation of Connect Tech, a division that will create content for closed loop marketing (CLM) programs for pharmaceutical clients. The division will provide strategic and creative direction, project management, content mapping, development, design, programming and implementation of CLM programs.