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Stand-alone Acxiom IT Rebrands as Ensono

3 min read

Acxiom IT emerged last summer from under stacks of data marketing to officially become its own company, Ensono.

For years, Acxiom Corp. of Little Rock steadily shifted its priority to growing its data marketing side and away from its IT management division, and last year the company sold the IT division to Boston investors Charlesbank Capital Partners and M/C Partners for $190 million. The sale was announced in May and closed in August. Since then, the new stand-alone company has been positioning itself for a 2016 rebranding as Ensono.

Ensono is based in suburban Chicago, where Acxiom’s IT division was based, and employs around 700 workers in all, 350 at its headquarters. But roughly 150 employees, transitioned from Acxiom, work at its Conway data center. As part of the sale to the Boston investment groups, the company got the data center at Acxiom’s Conway campus as well as two floors in one of Acxiom’s existing buildings in Conway.

Ensono CEO Jeff VonDeylen said the remainder of the Ensono team works remotely and is spread across the globe. Plus, Ensono maintains a small data center presence in Little Rock, he said.

VonDeylen is a former CFO and president of Savvis, a CenturyTel subsidiary. Joining him on the Ensono leadership team are COO Brian Klingbeil, a former CenturyTel exec, and CFO Jens Teagan. Ensono’s top executive based in Conway is former Arkansas state Rep. Jim Magnus, who serves as vice president of partner development and is a former Acxiom VP.

The company, which specializes in mainframe, infrastructure and cloud services, plans to expand its Conway presence. Currently, Ensono splits its mainframe operations between Conway and Chicago. Over the course of the Acxiom deal, Klingbeil said he became impressed with Arkansas’ workforce and especially its potential to provide tech-savvy workers.

“I’ve worked all over the world but somehow had managed to miss Arkansas,” he said. “I walked away from Little Rock and Conway smitten with Arkansas. I walked away with a smile on my face just from dealing with the friendly people. The talent available in Arkansas struck all of us, so we decided to bolster our presence there. Really, we liked what we inherited in Arkansas from Acxiom and what we think we can develop there.”

VonDeylen said the company benefitted from the Acxiom name in the first few months of its existence, “but at some point it was confusing,” he said.

“Getting a new identity and a new name that’s our own was important. The last two or three years, Acxiom was not promoting this part of the business at all. Building our brand will take time.”

Acxiom CEO Scott Howe admitted as much when the deal was made. In addition to a new name and its stand-alone status, Ensono also got to keep a “great listing” of Acxiom’s Fortune 500 clients.

“We’re in it for the long term,” VonDeylen said.

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