PSA provides strategic guidance to firms that goes beyond routine due diligence, crisis-response investigation, and market entry advisory services. Built on the firm’s strong analytical, investigative and international credentials, our consultants provide intelligence and advise clients on complex issues relating to point-specific human risks, mergers and acquisitions, and emerging regional legal or regulatory challenges—all tailored to the specific needs of the client and individual situation.


Navigating a High Risk Transaction

PSA was engaged to evaluate and assist in overcoming the potential risks associated with an ongoing partnership in an energy investment firm in Southeast Asia. The client needed to balance an advantageous business relationship with risks presented by revelations about the partner’s past behavior, along with a challenging governance environment.

By discreetly drawing on a network of experts from across the region, PSA was able to identify that the partner CEO was well connected and ideally positioned to deliver on their required aspects of the partnership. However,

  • The CEO’s past revealed a longstanding pattern of questionable deals;
  • His firm had also received questionable government funds for contracts despite not performing its obligations, leading to an unquantifiable and open-ended liability and other concerns;
  • The CEO personally–and his firm generally–had several community relations issues near the site of the assets to be provided;
  • The CEO was previously involved in similar joint ventures in which the firm had collected money directly from partners before abandoning the projects, which resulted in litigation and arbitration cases in multiple countries;
  • And most critically, the assets the CEO was intending to provide to the client were the same assets which were the subject of ongoing litigation.

Working with the client’s regional counsel, PSA was able to provide direct intelligence that quantified the risk of government recovery action as negligible, assessed and dismissed potential community opposition to the deal, advised the client on tactics to support the movement of the transaction elements into a special purpose vehicle within a nearby common law jurisdiction, obtained and then independently verified proof of asset ownership. Based on these actions the client was able to effectively de-risk a lucrative but high-risk transaction within a complex socio-political jurisdiction in which recovery would not have been possible.

Political Risk Assessment

A prominent client in the oil and gas industry engaged PSA to explore the domestic political and geopolitical implications of signing an offshore hydrocarbon lease that had been suggested to them. PSA engaged in a broad series of expert interviews taking place at the highest level of local and national government, including thought leaders, key opposition leaders, and informed regional observers.

From these interviews PSA was able to discover that:

  • The offshore lease was within an area subject to significant territorial dispute;
  • That is was highly likely that this territory would come into significant dispute within the next 3-5 years, early on in the lease period and well before the potential point of economic recovery for the investment;
  • The political mandate of the lease-granting authority would also become a contentious issue in domestic politics in the near term.

Based on this information and the details obtained, the client declined the lease offer. Subsequent events have shown that PSA’s position on this matter was correct, and that because of this timely and insightful advice the client was able to avoid significant losses and unwanted political tensions in several key markets.

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