Acxiom predominately supplies data and analytics on households for direct marketing and customer relationship management work. According to Liberum, the company claims that it maintains a storehouse of consumer information covering nearly every household in the US.
In September last year, IPG entered into a global partnership with Acxiom to strengthen the network's data and analytics capabilities.
This, the analyst company posits, will focus attention in the industry again on the importance of owning data in a "GDPR World".
"There will, therefore, be a question of whether the other agency groups will take similar steps and it may also influence WPP’s decision on what it does with its Kantar Data Management business, where WPP has historically claimed the value of owning data," Liberum analysts Ian Whittaker and Annick Maas, wrote.
This is in light of speculation that WPP might sell off Kantar, along with other assets, to satisfy its investors. A sign that it may be divesting itself of its programmatic and data assets is the sale of its stake in AppNexus to AT&T last week.
Liberum advised keeping an eye on Publicis Groupe's next move given its investments in AI-intranet Marcel and the importance it has placed on data as integral to its offering at its Capital Markets Day earlier this year.