Business Publisher Sues Acxiom Direct Media for $4.4 Million

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Business publisher Progressive Business Publications has sued Acxiom Direct Media alleging unfair trade practices, the publisher said yesterday.


According to PBP, the lawsuit hinges on violations of list agreements between the companies and is seeking $4.4 million in damages. Alleged in the lawsuit are misuses including unauthorized appending of PBP's database.


Acxiom, Conway, AR, was the parent company of Direct Media, Greenwich, CT, from 1996 until last year, when employees of the firm bought back a controlling interest.


"The list rental and data exchange business is built on trust," said PBP president Ed Satell. "It appears to Progressive Business Publications that Acxiom knowingly, continually and extensively violated that trust and ethical guidelines of the Direct Marketing Association."


Among PBP's 28 business publications are The Selling Advantage and CFO & Controller Alert. It also has 10 product guides and a seminar division. The company, founded in 1989, is based in Malvern, PA.


Neither Acxiom nor PBP officials could be reached for comment.


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