Nielsen Holdings NV has hired an investment bank to explore a sale of its tradeshow and event wing, Nielsen Expositions, multiple sources are reporting.

Nielsen Expositions President David Loechner declined comment.

According to various sources, the parent company wishes to concentrate on its core audience measurement business.

Nielsen Expositions generated $183 million in revenue in 2011, or about 3 percent of Nielsen Holdings’ total, according to the company’s annual report.

Nielsen reported fourth quarter and year-end results last month, posting 3-percent and 1-percent revenue gains overall. Its expo segment rose 2 percent for the year, but took a 19-percent hit in Q4. The company attributed the loss to the timing of its shows.

Among the unit’s major holdings are ASD, the Hospitality Design Expo (HD Expo), the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS), the Outdoor Retailer Summer and Winter Markets and Interbike. According to its annual report, Nielsen Expositions has more than 40 events spread across 20 industries and connects 300,000 buyers and sellers each year.

The story comes just two weeks after FOLIO: sister mag Expo learned Cygnus Business Media had put its agricultural group up for sale.

Credit Suisse Group AG has been named as the bank working with Nielsen, according to

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