Neustar buys TagusInfo for better phone user tracking

Neustar is acquiring privately owned Targusinfo for approximately $650 million (£413 million) in cash in a bid to expand its real time information and analytics services, it said.

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Neustar is acquiring privately owned Targusinfo for approximately $650 million (£413 million) in cash in a bid to expand its real time information and analytics services, it said.

Both Neustar and Targusinfo manage databases that allow companies to find, connect and authenticate users across Internet and voice networks, whether fixed-line, cable or mobile, Neustar CEO Lisa Hook said.

The most public part of Targusinfo's offerings is its caller ID service, which provides 178 million identifications per day. But the company also offers a whole host of other solutions based on its database of North American caller names, including allowing companies to confirm links between name, address, landline phone, mobile phone, email and IP address information, and then use that for marketing purposes.

Neustar, on the other hand, was created to allow users to take their phone number with them when they switched carrier or moved. Today it manages global telephone number and IP address databases. The company also offers IP geolocation services, threat monitoring and website performance monitoring.

The two companies are not new acquaintances: their headquarters are just a few miles apart in Virginia, and the deal stems from a meal Neustar's Hook had with Targusinfo's CEO George Moore last year, Hook wrote.

Neustar expects to complete the transaction in the fourth quarter.