Recent investigations into the business practices in China of Dun & Bradstreet (DNB.NYSE) a commercial database firm, could impact the overall profitability of the company and decrease its likelihood of finding a buyer, The Wall Street Journal reported. Reports emerged last week that the company had enlisted JP Morgan Chase (JPM.NYSE) and Credit Suisse (CS.NYSE) to help scout for a new buyer. However, analysts say the firm’s sagging performance could be impacting the search. The data-collection practices of the D&B’s Roadway direct-marketing unit was criticized in March by the Chinese government for allegedly violating consumer privacy laws; the company has since closed the unit. D&B has also reported potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, a US law that prohibits bribery of foreign officials, to the US Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission. “[These allegations will] make any purchaser think twice about assuming this liability,” said Shlomo Rosenbaum, vice president at Stifel Nicolaus, a financial research firm. He added that at the very least, the investigations would hurt the sale price of D&B.
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