The Association of National Advertisers (ANA) has announced that it is acquiring another trade group, the Data & Marketing Association, formerly the Direct Marketing Association. The move was approved today by the board of directors of each organization, subject to formal approval by the voting members of the DMA. The integration is scheduled to be completed by July 1.

The combined enterprise brings together national advertisers, advertising agencies, media companies, law firms, consultancies, ad tech and advertising companies, and marketing solution and service providers. The collective membership in the merged organization will include 2,000 corporate enterprises representing 20,000 brands and 150,000 industry professionals.

“The combination of these two venerable institutions brings immense value to both member bases, as they will share a wide array of valuable resources and leadership platforms,” says ANA CEO Bob Liodice. “The ANA/DMA collaboration creates a dynamic new entity dedicated to comprehensively serving virtually every aspect of marketing with distinction and professionalism. The ANA is particularly enthused about the potential for enhancing consumer engagement and business value through innovative, data-driven marketing.”

Under the terms of the agreement, the DMA will become an ANA division to be headed by DMA CEO Tom Benton. It will serve the ANA and DMA membership bases with a network of educational and professional development resources, and the two groups will convene a combined, exclusive leadership team with a focus on identifying and implementing data-driven initiatives to advance the industry and drive growth.

“The ANA and DMA memberships are composed of the most talented and professional advertising and marketing organizations in the world. The combination of these two associations will provide all DMA and ANA members with the power to responsibly guide data-driven marketing that delivers value to consumers and customers,” says Benton. “Data and technology evolutions have completely reshaped today’s modern business practices. Now is the ideal time for these leading associations to come together to bring enhanced consumer focus, responsibility, research, education and advocacy to the industry.”

Benton added that as part of the acquisition, the DMA’s Nonprofit Federation and Email Experience Council (EEC) will continue to operate within the ANA framework as they have within DMA.

The move marks the latest step in the ANA’s evolution and long-term growth plans and follows similar acquisitions made earlier this year and in 2014 and 2015. In January, the ANA acquired the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA), which was founded in 2004 and supports ethical word-of-mouth marketing practices. In December 2014, it acquired the Business Marketing Association (BNA), which was founded in 1922. Five months prior, the ANA acquired the Brand Activation Association (BAA), which was founded in 1911 and was previously known as the Promotion Marketing Association. Both the BMA and the BAA have since become ANA divisions. In addition, in 2015, the Advertising Educational Foundation joined the ANA as its educational arm and is now known as the ANA Educational Foundation.