Chris Porter Riding the Waves of Change - from OneSource to Avention
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By Chris Porter

Abstract

Avention is a B2B information service providing information about companies, executives and industries, and is the successor to the OneSource Business Browser and iSell products. Chris Porter muses on how the new Avention product shows one company riding the waves of ownership changes in the information market.

Item

FreePint is currently running a Topic Series: Next-Generation Competitive Intelligence. As part of this series, were very pleased to take a look at new offering from Avention.

Avention is the new name for the company formerly known as OneSource Information Services.

Avention is also the name for the company’s new flagship product, a global B2B database of information relating to companies and individuals which is aimed in particular at sales and marketing professionals and researchers. This is the successor product to both OneSource Business Browser and the OneSource iSell product range.

Turbulent Times but One Focus

OneSource can trace its history back to 1986. In early 2004 the (then) NASDAQ-listed company was poised to merge with a private investment firm, but Omaha-based database marketing services company infoUSA came in with a higher bid.

Its new parent changed its own name to Infogroup in 2008 and went through some challenging times, including an SEC investigation into its founder, Vin Gupta and a sale to private equity firm CCMP Capital Advisors LLC in 2010, which itself led to litigation.

In October 2012, Infogroup announced that it had sold OneSource to Cannondale Investments, a Connecticut-based company focused on acquiring data-enabled information services in partnership with GTCR, the Chicago-based private equity firm.

The corporate background sounds a little distracting; but through it all, OneSource continued to focus on serving its customers with its well-established, highly structured information database.

Company Information Specialist

Early in 2014, OneSource rebranded under the name of Avention and launched a new product, also called Avention.

In its new home in the GTCR stable, the company has moved pretty quickly to refresh its service, bring in some new technology capabilities and increase its sales and marketing presence.

The impact so far on OneSource looks very positive for aficionados of specialised information services.

GTCR is making some other big moves in the information industry, stepping in to acquire two of the leading publicly quoted providers of tools for PR and corporate communications professionals, Sweden’s Cision and US-based company Vocus.

FreePint will watch GTCR’s further moves in the industry with keen interest.

Editor's Note

Avention has a host of interesting features. The full FreePint Report: Product Review of Avention is now available in PDF format, in a convenient package for reference and sharing, for those with a FreePint Subscription.

This article is part of the FreePint Topic Series: Next-Generation Competitive Intelligence running from May-June 2014. Register your interest now, and you'll also get a free copy of the FreePint Report: Buyer's Guide on Competitive Intelligence when it's published in June.

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