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Marketing services leads M&A deals

Direct marketing industry M&A deals in the first quarter totaled 107 transactions worth a combined $6.6 billion, according to investment banker Petsky Prunier's Deal Notes. The deal value was flat compared with last year's first quarter, when there were 58 deals. Marketing services deals accounted for more than half (56) of all direct marketing deals and represented $3.2 billion in value. There were 28 marketing technology deals worth $2.2 billion, and 23 direct marketer deals worth $1.2 billion. Interactive Corp.'s acquisition of AskJeeves, Acxiom Corp.'s purchase of Digital Impact and Transcontinental Direct's acquisition of Jetson Direct Mail were among the largest deals in the quarter.

Report highlights profitability

The direct marketing industry is exhibiting signs of continued growth, according to the Direct Marketing Association's Quarterly Business Review. The b-to-b segment reported a major increase in first-quarter profitability, with an index of 73, compared with 63 for the fourth quarter. In the QBR index, a score above 50 represents growth. In addition, the report projected increased revenue for the segment in the second quarter.

MeritDirect wins TechTarget lists

List manager MeritDirect announced it has been awarded exclusive list management for TechTarget's postal and e-mail subscriber lists. The lists of more than 1 million information technology marketers and professionals were previously managed by Direct Media. Names are derived from TechTarget's Web, magazine, e-newsletter and event products.

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