New York--In a bid to increase its lobbying on behalf of its U.S. members, the Direct Marketing Association has entered a broad alliance with its European counterpart, the Brussels-based Federation of European Direct Marketing Associations.The DMA and FEDMA will conduct joint lobbying efforts in both the U.S. and Europe, and share information and resources with each other and their corporate members. The DMA has 100-plus U.S. member companies with offices in Europe. The FEDMA is the largest pan-European direct marketing organization. The news comes as the DMA and its member companies--including IBM Corp. and Microsoft Corp.--are increasingly monitoring the European union's privacy initiatives, which are much more restrictive than those being debated in Washington. "Because many of the issues that direct marketers face are the same on both sides of the Atlantic, the DMA needs to have a voice in the dialogue at the European Commission and European Parliament, as it does in Washington." said H. Robert Wientzen, DMA president-CEO. U.S. b-to-b direct marketers are focusing on Europe because of growth opportunities being created by, among other factors, the advent of the euro and the adoption of Internet technologies. B-to-b direct marketing spending in Europe reached $51.8 billion in 2000, compared with $98.6 billion in the U.S. B-to-b direct marketing sales in Europe were $254.5 billion, versus $792.8 billion in the U.S.