Kroll Associates In Play: Green Eyeshades And Private Eyes?

Coopers & Lybrand bows out, but Kroll Associates is still in play

Sam Spade would be amazed. Today's private investigators are flourishing, reflecting surging demand for security, due-diligence, and fraud-prevention services. That demand is being felt at privately held Kroll Associates Inc., the world's largest investigative concern, which has been exploring a buyout or strategic alliance with several financial and accounting firms, BUSINESS WEEK has learned. Coopers & Lybrand, the Big Six accounting firm, was negotiating to acquire Kroll but recently broke off talks, at least about an outright purchase.

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