Over the past couple of years, ValueAct Capital Partners, an activist shareholder fund, has been targeting Acxiom
Acxiom develops technologies to help companies acquire customers. It focuses primarily on large companies, including Citigroup
In fact, the deterioration was apparent in Acxiom's fiscal first-quarter results, which came out in late July and showed a net loss of $0.15 per share.
In light of all these troubling signs, I can understand why Morgan wanted a buyout. It would have saved shareholders a lot of pain. What's more, being a private company would have relieved management of dealing with the pressures of meeting quarterly expectations.
But with the credit crunch, it's now much tougher to get buyouts done. Just look at the troubles at Harman International
So for the most part, Acxiom is in a bad spot. Morgan announced that he is going to retire, and even though he says he won't leave until a successor is chosen, the move is likely to be disruptive. More importantly, it looks as though the company will need some time just to get back on track. It's probably best for Foolish investors to stay away.
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