|Scope of free services : for corporate executives
The focus of GDI Solutions is to make it
easy, and free, for corporate executives to quickly meet well-qualified
project support professionals or find the information they need for
investment projects anywhere. Aside from obvious introductions such as
appropriately qualified site selection consultants or economic development
professionals in locations of interest, there are many other potential
contacts, as illustrated in the section about
Participants and other contacts.
The scope of such introductions will be driven
over time by the demand of executives for such assistance, but a few
illustrative examples of potential introductions or information sources include
- specialists in business location
strategy and the site selection process
- specialists in investment incentive
negotiations and compliance
- project management firms (getting
the project planned and done - within time, budget, and quality constraints)
- corporate tax planning specialists
(project-related issues, business structure, global optimization, etc.)
- corporate development specialists
(strategy, M&A, post-merger integration, joint ventures, alliances, etc.)
- investment promotion or economic
development representatives, Chambers of Commerce, etc.
- professional associations and
publications related to direct investment projects
- senior executives at other companies
who may be willing to share their own relevant experiences
- non-confidential market knowledge
developed directly by GDI Solutions executives through their support of
- utilities which offer support for
direct investment projects in their service areas
- government-related services
(commercial officers, trade representatives, diplomatic / consular officer,
- specialists in market research,
political risk management, regulatory environment, etc.
- specialists in administrative or
legal aspects of project planning and implementation
- specialists in human resources
issues, recruitment and training, compensation, etc.
- supply chain or logistics
specialists, import/export specialists, airport or port authorities, etc.
- architectural and engineering firms,
or corporate interior design and factory design specialists
- specialists in environment risk
assessments, "brownfield" remediation issues, etc.
- construction firms
- developers or owners of corporate
real estate (offices, industrial parks, ports, REIT's, etc.)
- corporate real estate professionals
(within corporations, as well leading service providers in major markets)
- project finance specialists,
investment banks, investment risk specialists, venture capitalists, etc.
Once again, this is just an
illustrative list of relevant contacts or information sources which can be identified
through this networking process according to the needs of executives. For
more specific examples, refer to the section on
Participants which highlights both active participants as well as a
selective list of other relevant contacts. The
Referrals section also explains the process further.
Keep in mind, however, that the contacts listed
in this website reflect only a small sample of the thousands of contacts and information
resources identified by GDI Solutions to support corporate executives.
Depending on the specific needs for a particular project, other contacts which
are already familiar to GDI Solutions, or which can be identified through the
various networks of contacts or rapid research work, may be introduced. The
capabilities are therefore not limited to what is identifiable directly to
anyone through use of the lists published on this website, and GDI Solutions will
typically have additional knowledge about many such contacts which should not be
published openly through such a website.
It is obviously impossible to know all
such services, everywhere, and maintain current knowledge about all details of their
capabilities. The key is to know many leaders, and how to find the others
as appropriate through that growing network or other research work. GDI
Solutions is basically a "knowledge" organization, progressively learning
through each relationship and project how to make better connections between
more investors, services, and investment alternatives to find good solutions to
a wide range of direct investment needs worldwide.
|Scope of free services : for area
See how to request a relevant
The services of GDI Solutions to
corporate executives are mainly funded by two sources : participating area
representatives and participating professional service organizations.
There is, however, no obligation to participate. It
is voluntary, and reflects the expected benefit of more active participation
in such services. (see also : how to
On the other hand, there are literally thousands of
economic development organizations worldwide. How much work does it
take to maintain timely information about them? Or to meet with them
personally? Or to do familiarization visits to get to know their areas
better? Or to do independent research work to develop good, comparable
information about the local experiences of investors?
Do the math. Even if one concentrates on just a few
hundred such organizations, it can obviously take thousands of hours of work
each year by very experienced professionals to maintain the level of
knowledge required to respond rapidly and effectively to the needs of
corporate executives for projects anywhere.
It is hard to think of any corporation which could justify
sucn an investment. Indeed, even the professional service providers in
tihs niche can't readily afford to invest hundreds of thousands, or even
millions, of dollars worth of their professional time to maintain such
knowledge. Instead, they know a limited number of places well from
direct exposure through recent projects or contacts, and have to scramble to
research the others as circumstances require.
Of course, that means they are being paid by a specific
client to do custom research for a specific project, and must therefore
limit the scope of such research, since the clients would rarely have the
time or inclination to hire a consultant to research many places.
Instead, they just want to find someplace that is viable, quickly, at
minimal cost. It may not be the optimal solution, but it works.
The knowledge gained through such projects gradually
accumulates, but since the number of projects supported each year by any one
service provider is fairly limited, and the locations of interest may vary
widely, the knowledge often isn't very timely. Thus, custom research
is essential for every such client.
GDI Solutions therefore offers a new approach through
services such as GUIDE, as elaborated
separately. Area representatives pay for highly standardized,
independent services to make better information about their areas readily
available to everyone, quickly All service providers and investors can
have easy access to such reports, so that custom research work undertaken on
behalf of investors can focus on the critical aspects of their projects
rather than the tasks of basic information gathering and analysis.
In effect, the area representatives pay the cost for much
of the basic research about their areas, and the corporate executives pay
for the more custom research to meet their special needs, whether by hiring
a specialist or by doing the work on their own. This is analogous to a
company doing the work to prepare an annual report and then have it audited
independently, or paying to have their processes and products tested
independently for quality.
What isn't free for corporate executives, and why
As a shared service funded by participating organizations which
benefit from their support of direct investment projects, whether through
profitable services or the job creation and many other benefits of
investment projects in a particular location, it simply isn't possible or
appropriate to try to do everything which every executive might ever request
Instead, the focus as a shared service is on doing things
which are valuable to many executives, mainly by introducing existing
support capabilities more effectively, rather than trying to create new
Similarly, the idea isn't to create one massive reference
database or knowledgebase, whether on an open website or a proprietary
basis, but rather to consolidate enough practical knowledge to make it easy
to find good information and support quickly, especially but not exclusively
among the participating areas and service providers.
Sometimes, the needs of a company will be so unique that
custom research work is
required. If so, we'll do the best we can to be helpful with the
available knowledge and contacts, but may need to either decline a request
which we simply cannot satisfy, or refer the investor to a contact who can
perform such research.
In some cases, when more than one company has a particular
need, it may be possible to develop a shared research solution to that the
cost to each is minimized.
For example, if several participating companies wanted to
obtain much better independent research about business conditions in a
particular region of China for strategic planning purposes, GDI Solutions
might be able to arrange a shared project to do such work so that much
better research work could be performed than any of the companies could
justify as an investment alone. In such a situation, GDI Solutions
wouldn't be engaged in the actual research work, but might help to find a
qualified researcher (or researchers - to compare their analysis) through
the network of contacts, and arrange for the project costs and research work
to be shared.
In summary, the goal of GDI Solutions isn't to create a
free service which will do anything which any executive requests in this
niche. The goal is to find efficient ways to add high value for
executives who are facing major investment project decisions.
Sometimes it will be quite appropriate for such executives to share the
costs of the work involved, but most of the services of GDI Solutions are
expected to be free to executives because they are funded by the area
representatives and professional service providers who want to support their
|Scope of free services for professional
Professional service providers, unlike area
representatives, profit directly from the work which they are engaged to
perform on behalf of investors. As such, it's quite reasonable for
them to share the cost of services which bring business opportunities to
The SICR services are
therefore designed to provide a consistent process for professionals to pay
an acceptable retainer or "success fee" for the work of GDI Solutions, which
effectively leverages their own marketing efforts and investments by
creating a process through which GDI Solutions can remain alert for any
opportunities to apply their capabilities to the needs of investors.
As explained separately in the section about
how to participate, there is no
obligation to participate. Indeed, participation is selective, and
some service providers will not be invited to participate, which is not
necessarily a reflection on their capabilities.
For example, a specialist in tax planning in Brazil might
be an extremely useful contact to introduce for a particular investor, and
may be very well qualified to provide such services, but may still be
inappropriate as a "participant" in GDI Solutions simply because the need
for such introductions may be very infrequent. Frankly, it may not be
worth the trouble to try to arrange for any compensation from such a contact
for the introduction.
In short, the contact "gets lucky" because the contact has
the right qualifications to meet a specific investor's need. Once
again, the driving factor behind referrals is not whether there is or isn't
a contact between GDI Solutions and the service provider to receive any
compensation for the referral, but rather whether or not the contact seems
well qualified to meet the needs of the investor.
In order to increase the resources available to support
the services to corporate executives, and share costs as fairly as possible
among all participants, GDI Solutions will encourage non-participants to
contribute a success fee for referrals which bring actual sales to them, or
will encourage corporate investors to give some consideration for the
benefit of such introductions.
This is, in effect, analogous to a broker's commission.
Although there is no contractual obligation for either the corporate
executive or the service provider to make such a payment, it should be a
customary practice to ask for such consideration as a matter of fairness to
all other participants in the process.
As a routine matter of ethical disclosure, GDI Solutions
will indicate to corporate participants whether or not a particular service
provider or area representative is a "participant" which helps to fund the
services of GDI Solutions, or whether any consideration is expected to be
received from a non-participating service, For example, this is
indicated in the Participants section.