November 27, 2018 / 12:52 PM / 13 days ago

Alliance Data Systems explores options for Epsilon unit

(Reuters) - Credit card and loyalty programs company Alliance Data Systems Corp (ADS.N) said on Tuesday it was exploring options for its online marketing unit, Epsilon, including a potential sale.

Epsilon, which accounts for nearly 30 percent of the company’s revenue, reported slowing revenue growth in the third quarter, prompting Alliance Data to warn that the unit’s lackluster performance could weigh on its 2018 revenue.

The move to seek options for Epsilon comes after Alliance Data had said in October that it was considering a significant realignment of its businesses, which included evaluating assets that could “thrive under a different steward”.

The company did not disclose the financial terms of the deal but said it would use the net proceeds to repay debt and return capital to stockholders.

Epsilon, which helps companies manage email marketing campaigns, was at the center of a massive data breach in 2011 that had hit a number of companies including Target Corp (TGT.N) and Marriott International Inc (MAR.O).

Alliance Data said it had retained Evercore as a financial adviser and Latham & Watkins LLP as its legal adviser to explore options for Epsilon.

Reporting by Aparajita Saxena and Munsif Vengattil in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva

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