Approximately 10% of Romanian companies access corporate intelligence services when they are involved in a transaction, whether it is a merger or an acquisition, according to an analysis by the Corporate Intelligence Agency, a risk management company dedicated to the business environment.
Increasingly, in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) processes, the third big step for companies, after hiring financial and legal consulting teams, is to access the services of a corporate & competitive intelligence company. Its objective is to carry out an action of “enhanced” or “in depth” due diligence, meaning documenting, in the field, confronts the dry reality of figures and statistical reports with the reality in the field, analyses business conduct, the company’s reputation among the partners, the culture of the organization and other elements of interest for the client who turned to its services.
“The intelligence area for companies is a key component in the decision-making process by shareholders or company management. When a corporation decides to invest in new products, services, or another company, it does so following studies, market analysis, economic trends, etc. So, the decision is made based on economic information. Corporate Intelligence Agency delivers to partners that type of information that adds value to the company’s day-to-day operations, regardless of when it is delivered: before new products, services or investments or post-factum, when the company suspects that it is the target of internal or external aggressions “, says Gabriel Zgunea, CEO of Corporate Intelligence Agency.
Corporate intelligence means, above all, an invaluable help for local investors, foreigners, or newcomers, who are not familiar with the market they want to develop, and who want to understand the key components that characterize a concrete market. It is a support market, dedicated exclusively to the business environment, which aims to streamline development processes and maximize risk protection.
The professionalization of the business environment stimulates the corporate intelligence market
Becoming a key component for many large companies, the value of the local corporate intelligence market approached 10 million euro last year, amid growing interest in such services, in the context of professionalizing the business environment and awareness that information delivers knowledge and represents a useful and important tool in the decision-making process.
In Romania, the clients that mainly use these types of services are multinational companies from industries like retail, investment, banking, production, pharmaceutical, IT, oil & gas, construction, logistics, insurance, telecom, etc.
“Almost every month we have requests from new business sectors, which confirms the upward trend of the market and stimulates, at the same time, our professionalism and creativity in identifying solutions to support management in the decision-making process”, says Dan Rusu, Senior Partner at Corporate Intelligence Agency.
For the industries that generate the most requests, the Corporate Intelligence Agency has created specialized departments within the company, with investigators and analysts who are familiar with the operating patterns of fraudsters and experts who know the elements of interest to customers, due to due diligence projects.
When companies turn to corporate intelligence services
In addition to companies interested in inhanced due diligence services, in particular, companies that access corporate intelligence services do so out of a need for knowledge about situations, people or companies of interest, knowledge required in the decision-making process.
Another category of customers is interested in improving risk management and compliance systems, and they face internal fraud or potential internal fraud, which risks endangering their reputation and assets.
In the last 3 years, the Romanian corporate intelligence market has seen a much greater openness to foreign investors and to those companies that navigate through complex operational processes, through a multitude of collaborators and competitors.
But it remains far from the mature markets in the West or the Anglo-Saxon space. Here, corporate & competitive intelligence companies have a tradition, some with a history of 20-30 years, others are listed on the stock exchange, have offices open in major financial centres, in London, New York, Zurich, Dubai, etc. Moreover, most of the clients of these companies are listed entities, where the brand’s reputation is, sometimes, worth more than a financial loss.