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More and more, high quality private investigator agencies are being hired by business managers to conduct investigative due diligence.
So what are the benefits in using a PI?
Nowadays, due diligence is no longer an option for corporates and governments. Without doubt, it is a necessity. Regardless, whether it is conducted for legal or commercial reasons–perhaps both–due diligence is a vital component of best business practices and compliance.
On the other hand, individuals and SMEs who are not obligated to conduct due diligence may question the costs. But not knowing your customer (KYC), your partner or your investment manager can result in loss of revenue and heavy fines. It is imperative for smaller businesses to protect their reputation.
Many think due diligence is restricted to the thorough examination of financial records before a major business transaction. For example, before a merger and acquisition deal.
However, financial due diligence, sometimes referred to as accounting due diligence, is a very separate function from the work of a private investigator. We, as corporate private investigators, focus more on reputation and entities related to the company and people that the client wants to better understand. The types of company for which our clients require investigative due diligence (IDD) include suppliers, customers, sub-contractors or major stakeholders.
In essence, skilled professional researchers and private investigators—working for high quality investigative agencies—are adept at realizing comprehensive IDD.
Based in Hong Kong, but operating worldwide, we specialize in investigative due diligence for private investors, international lawyers, NGOs and multi-national corporates.
Often, our international clients may be conducting multi-jurisdictional investigative due diligence and, initially, come to us for their requirements in China and SE Asia. Later, they realize the value that local knowledge can bring to a case, especially in Chinese-speaking cultures.
Our talented, multi-language researchers can quickly clarify the structure of a company and identify the roles, relationships and reputations of its directors, senior managers and, if directed, principal shareholders.
However, a high percentage of our due diligence work (often executed in phases) is not restricted to only SE Asia. Many of our regular clients now ask us to participate in or run worldwide investigations. A significant proportion of these relate to cases in South America, Europe and the UK.
Information is the key to managing risk.
For your own peace of mind, you should ensure you have the information you need regarding the benefits and risks of a transaction before making a major decision.
So, anyone thinking about the following types of business deals should consider conducting professional investigative due diligence (IDD) on the party of interest:
The majority of our services are self-explanatory. However, there is always some confusion as to what constitutes an Investigative Due Diligence Check as opposed to a Background Check.
If you ask 100 PI agencies what the difference is, you will most likely get 100 different answers. There are many definitions of both.
In some ways, it is easier to reference typical vetting procedures used by governments
In short, this is exhaustive research and investigations into an entity’s background and reputation. It involves thorough checks of media, corporate source documents and reputation. If required, we can combine a credit report into the project.
We call this Investigative Due Diligence.
This confirms if a company or individual meets given requirements. In the main, we are verifying information that you give us. For instance, you may wish to check an employment application or establish that a company legally exists.
In addition, a company background check may include basic research to establish facts. As an example, you may wish to find out more about the corporate history of a company. Perhaps, you have most of the research you require but would like a site visit and/ or confirm company contact details.
We call this a Background Check.