Dun & Bradstreet Splits, Lets Go of A.C. Nielsen
Roeder, David, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Byline: David Roeder Daily Herald Business Writer
A breakup of Dun & Bradstreet Corp. will restore one of its units, Schaumburg-based A.C. Nielsen, as a free-standing company, executives said Wednesday.
But Nielsen, a world leader in market research, will be shorn of the division that's best known to the public, the one that compiles television ratings.
That group, New York-based Nielsen Media Research, will be transferred to a new company being created by the breakup. Its famous ratings will continue to carry the Nielsen name, officials said.
A.C. Nielsen, with 600 employees in Schaumburg and 17,000 worldwide, was an independent company until Dun & Bradstreet, a supplier of financial data, acquired it in 1984.
Following a trend set by such corporate giants as AT&T and Baxter, Dun & Bradstreet disclosed late Tuesday it will separate itself into three public companies by the fall.
The AT&T breakup entails the loss of 40,000 jobs, but Dun & Bradstreet said it expects trimming only about 1,000 positions from its total of 50,000, mostly through attrition. No employee transfers are expected, the company said.
"This is not an AT&T situation at all," said a Nielsen spokeswoman. She said the companies being spun off by Dun & Bradstreet are "primed for growth."
The move creates a new company, Cognizant Corp., that will combine the Nielsen TV ratings with a company that provides marketing data to the drug and health care industries.
A slimmed-down Dun & Bradstreet, based in Wilton, Conn. …