Legal Publishing

Reed Elsevier to Buy ChoicePoint for $4.1B

Legal publisher Reed Elsevier has announced an agreement to buy database company ChoicePoint Inc. for $4.1 billion in cash.

Reed Elsevier owns the LexisNexis legal database service. The combined company will be able to offer better risk management and analytical products in sectors including law, insurance, finance, screening, law enforcement, public safety and health care, a press release says.

Reed Elsevier finance chief Mark Armour said his company is particularly interested in a ChoicePoint database of people who miss insurance payments, the Wall Street Journal reports (sub. req.). Reed Elsevier’s Seisint unit will be able to use the data to help insurance companies evaluate risky sales and determine prices.

Seisint and ChoicePoint have both been in the news for security leaks that allowed thieves to steal information from their databases, according to the Wall Street Journal story and the Bloomberg report on the buyout.

Another legal publisher and the owner of the Westlaw legal database, the Thomson Corp., recently received antitrust approval to proceed with its acquisition of Reuters.

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