Haarlem, the Netherlands--Executives of VNU NV said first-half 2000 profits fell 18% from the same period last year. Profits dipped to $82.6 million, down from $112.2 million for the first half of 1999. VNU attributed the drop to having to write off intangible assets from its acquisition of Nielsen Media Research Inc. VNU is transforming itself from a newspaper publisher to a b-to-b marketing information vendor. It is also steadily increasing its U.S. technology media presence. Last month, it announced it would buy Miller Freeman USA.