EXX Africa, a new specialist intelligence company, has been launched with the aim of providing businesses with forecasts on African political and economic risk, which will assist them in mitigating their risk exposure to the continent’s fast-changing developments in these areas.

The company, led by executive director Robert Besseling, is based in Johannesburg and London and has a network of trusted and dedicated sources across the African continent and beyond. Other management roles at the new company will be filled next year, GTR understands. Besseling is also a principal adviser to IHS Economics and Country Risk.

“EXX Africa is a play on the Latin phrase ex Africa (out of Africa), highlighting our unique position to source specialised and commercially-relevant intelligence from the African continent for our wide-ranging client set,” Besseling tells GTR. “Our greatest competitive advantage is our local presence and access to a broad network of local contacts. That way we are able to quickly and accurately forecast political, economic, or violent risks to business, as well as identify key opportunities.”

The company – the only one of its kind that focuses on Africa alone – is divided into EXX Africa Insight, which provides the business risk intelligence, and EXX Africa Consulting, responsible for risk advisory services.

EXX Africa aims to prepare its clients to enter new markets in Africa, to recognise and engage senior stakeholders, to identify key threats and opportunities, to monitor indicators of risk, to assess their socio-economic impact, and to manage expectations and meet local requirements.