Corporate Investigation [Due Diligence]
Examples of Investigative Services
- Learn detailed information about a Japanese company that has not yet been listed on the stock exchange.
- Does the Japanese company with which you are planning an expensive business deal really have the business capital you expect? What is its reputation within the business world?
- Typically, credit reports for businesses are not very detailed – what is the company’s actual status?
- Obtain information about the debt load of a Japanese business with negative credit. Do they have the resources with which to clear their debts? Do you need to investigate a certain topic in greater depth?
- From where does a specific Japanese company obtain its materials?
- Is there a price competition with a Japanese competitor? How does your competitor keep its costs down?
- Obtaining as much information as possible about a Japanese competitor’s new products.
- You would like to hire certain talented individuals, but what are their actual capabilities?
- Having discovered that a Japanese business partner deceived you about what they would do, you would like to take action to pursue the deceitful company.
- Having learned of an extremely positive opportunity, is it safe for you to actually pursue it?
Each business has its own particular circumstances, and naturally, our investigative methods and approach will change according to the particular needs of any given client. Because the available information about a company will vary according to its size and type of business, the sources of information about the target company’s credit conditions will also vary. It is impossible to use a cookie cutter method to investigate and obtain information about the actual conditions of every different type of business. This is especially true of Japan, where a lot of information is not publicly available, with the majority of the information listed in credit reports being released with an eye towards informing competitive rivals. These reports only include content that the company feels is beneficial to itself, with the company hiding information that it feels could be viewed as negative. In order to obtain precise information about a company’s credit, it is necessary to use customized investigative methods that are based upon expert knowledge. In addition to investigating a company, i2B also investigates the background of its executive officer, analyzes the business climate, the judgments of analysts, the market trends, the tendencies and effects of new laws or newly joined organizations, interviews with investors. This allows us to come to an overall investigative conclusion, compiling the use of all the information and sources discovered. We report to you based on the results of the most appropriate method of investigating the target company. i2B’s guiding principle is: “We miss nothing.”
Publicly Traded Companies and Privately Held Companies
A basic example of how we personalize investigations is the difference in how we investigate publicly-traded and privately-held companies. In the case of publicly-traded companies, primarily the larger ones, it is possible to gather useful information from public records. Since the capabilities of the organizational structure are crucial, it is possible to do a satisfactory analysis based solely on information about the company itself. Of course, it is still necessary to obtain financial records of the publicly-listed company and to perform a detailed analysis of them. On the other hand, there is little publicly-available information about privately-held or small-sized businesses, and financial information based on credit reports can be deceiving, especially because a lot of information does not appear on these reports. In these circumstances, we do in-person evaluations of the company’s exact conditions, uncover information about how they attract their clients, evaluate the credit conditions and background of the company executives, and provide other information that we can uncover from non-public sources. In cases where the business rival is a one-man operation, it goes without saying that an investigation of the head of the business is more useful and significant than an investigation of the company. i2B operates as a licensed private investigation agency and is naturally highly skilled at personal investigations.
The necessity of an approach may differ from that of America and Europe. Our use of guidelines below
In any nation, when a business competitor is publicly traded, detailed financial records can be easily accessed and analyzed. But what can be done when the company is not yet publicly traded? In the West, court records and criminal records are in the public domain, and, furthermore, you can search the records according to the name of the company or individual. For this reason, it is relatively easy to uncover information about the financial status of privately-held companies in the West. In Japan, however, publicly available records are extremely limited, and even when they exist, it is not possible to search them by names. Therefore, experience has shown that it’s extremely important to use other methods to search for signs of a competitor’s business troubles. For example, a business registration certificate can be very useful to a private investigator. A business registration certificate by itself contains nothing more than the company’s name, address, the date of its establishment, and the name of the person in charge. In and of itself, this does not provide any information about a business’ credit situation or business troubles. But we know how to examine business registration certificates for certain subtle signs. The following are a few of the warning signs of a business in trouble:
- A business that has changed its name more than five times within a few years.
- Changing addresses frequently without reason.
- The description of the business has not been consistent.
- The investment capital has shrunk.
- A record of creditors taking over ownership of the business.
- Creating the appearance of a long business history by means of the purchase of a much older business.
- There are no actual offices at the location listed on the business record as being the business headquarters.
- An office that doubles as a person’s home.
Additionally, real estate registration certificates are extremely useful. One can discover the following information from real estate records:
- The mortgage has been shifted from the original lender to another lender.
- Record that ownership has been transferred.
- An unknown or unclear third party has been added to the mortgage.
- A tax lien or other tax issues are recorded against the property.
- There is a record of leasing the property to others.
- What individual is listed as the financial guarantor of the property.
In addition, the following warning signs can also be recognized:
- Someone other than the business head holds the actual power in the company.
- The company has recently changed which bank it does business with.
- No phone records.
- The company has recently been putting energy into projects unrelated to its core business.
- Multiple key officials have recently retired.
- Discussion boards are full of negative rumors about the company.
An analysis of companies that have engaged in deceitful practices or that have gone bankrupt show that all of them have given off at least some of these warning signs. We are very familiar with the tell-tale signs of a company in financial distress and those of a company that engages in deceitful practices. We are also well-acquainted with the signs of a business in the black. i2B will carefully search for the warning signs of a troubled business, the company’s reputation among its clientele, the personal background of the head of the company, as well as other factors, and then make a clear and objective report about the company’s actual conditions to you.