Info-Prod Research

Due Diligence

Reputation

When finding a local partner, your business must have a solid understanding of your partner. Can he or she deliver the goods? Is his or her word strong? Info-Prod’s reputation service can answer these questions and more for you.

Partner Evaluation

Among the key assets a local partner brings to the business relationship is the ability to get things done locally, and the provision of a beneficial local ‘face’ for your firm.

When selecting and working with a local partner it is therefore crucial to have an independent verification of his true influence and capabilities, and of his local reputation among decision-makers, the business community, and the public at large.

Info-Prod uses its unique network of personal connections in order to get a detailed perspective on the local partner. The key paramaters we examine are:

Private Reputation – is the partner known among local businessmen for straight dealings? For effectiveness and reliability? Does his reputation inspire trust and goodwill?

Public Perception – what does the man on the street think of the partner? Does his public image match the values you want to be associated with?

Connections – can the partner open doors with local clients, officials and bankers? Can he get you fast and efficient results?

 

 

Partner Evaluation Case Study

A British firm had been assured by a Moroccan businessman that his impeccable personal connections at the highest levels of society, government and business would ease their way in his home market. Newspaper stories and online articles showing him on intimate terms with many top persons in the country seemed to confirm his claims.

However, an Info-Prod evaluation gave surprising results: Four months prior, the businessman had been quietly declared persona non-grata by official circles due to shady dealings that could have tarnished a royal reputation.

This development was not public knowledge, but the top local businessmen were all aware of his new standing, and avoided any interaction with him. A senior banker, sizing up the person’s large outstanding debts and his lack of resources, predicted the date on which he would flee the country.

The client was warned, and avoided a potentially harmful and embarrassing entanglement.

 

Iran Sanctions Compliance

Several countries have placed restrictions on doing business with Iran, foremost among them the United States.

These restrictions also apply to dealings with Iranian-complicit entities which aid the country in circumventing many of the international censures placed upon it. Unfortunately, numerous GCC companies and financial institutions fall under this latter definition.

Businesses that find themselves implicated in business relations or dealings that fall foul of these restrictions can suffer extensive legal liability and prosecution, as well as other negative outcomes. Individuals may face criminal charges and imprisonment.

Info-Prod helps clients avoid exposure by conducting expert background checks, certifying to clients that the entity they wish to deal with does not have problematic business relations or interests in Iran.

Terror Financing

Info-Prod has had significant experience in dealing with questions relating to terror financing.

Managing director Dr. Gil Feiler has written extensively on this subject, has appeared in international symposiums, and has lectured directors and executives in financial institutions, law firms and government agencies about various implications related to funding of terrorism.

The past decade has seen a range of private lawsuits and government sanctions against organizations that found themselves publically and legally linked to terror supporting charities, individuals or financial institutions. In order to avoid such damaging exposure, Info-Prod has been called upon numerous times in order to ascertain that local business and businessmen do not have links to terror funding.

Info-Prod is proficient in conducting discreet investigations of these matters. We rely upon our large body of knowledge that covers the relevant local regulations in each Middle Eastern country and the many unofficial systems for money transfer in the region, and on our extensive mid- and high-level personal connections.

 

Terror Finance Case Study

A major European bank had a extensive business ties with a local bank in Bahrain.

At a certain stage, the European bank was informed that one of the key owners of the Bahraini bank had made consistent and significant contributions to an Islamic charity with links to terrorism funding.

Info-Prod investigated both the owner and his immediate family, and removed doubts of his connection to any charity with links to terrorism.

 

Sample Publication

The Globalization of Terror Funding

Dr. Gil Feiler

September 2007

BESA - Mideast Security and Policy Studies No. 74

http://www.biu.ac.il/Besa/MSPS74.pdf

 

FCPA

Under the provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), bribery of foreign government officials - directly or indirectly – is a federal crime. Companies doing business in the Middle East are in effect required to clarify that the local business they are partnering with is not a conduit for kickbacks and payoffs to local officials.

Most Middle Eastern companies are privately held, with obscure and often convoluted holding structures. From a cultural perspective, enquiring openly into the holding structure can give personal offense to the local partner, and have an adverse impact on the business relationship.

In avoid FCPA liabilities, companies entering into business agreements in the Middle East turn to Info-Prod in order to clarify their potential exposure.

Info-Prod conducts its examination in an independent and discreet manner. The local company remains unaware of the person or entity that required the check. Often, the U.S. party requests that the local firm remain unaware that any examination had even taken place.

Utilizing our vast business network across the Middle East and beyond, Info-Prod clarifies the organizational and holding structure of the local, privately held companies, allowing the U.S. firm to proceed with the business relationship.

Our FCPA unit helps businesses, universities and financial firms avoid FCPA violations.

FCPA Case Study:

A major U.S. defense and aerospace corporation entered a business agreement with an Abu Dhabi-based company to service a multi-million dollar contract issued by the government of Abu Dhabi. Though privately held, the local company’s ownership was not in the public domain.

Rumors emerged that the some of the major shareholders were government officials, prompting concern by the American corporation. However, the local firm’s manager was a highly influential and well connected person, and the American firm was eager to avoid giving personal offense by questioning his good name or respectability.

Info-Prod conducted a discreet FCPA inspection. We uncovered first and second tiered shareholders, none of whom were currently serving government officials. The local company was cleared under FCPA provisions.

You are here: Due Diligence

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