Explico is an independent public policy and corporate diplomacy boutique with particular expertise in political risk management in the Central and Eastern European region (“CEE”) and the EU. Established in 2011, Explico’s name derives from our drive to explain the complexities of politics and regulation in this region to those seeking to do business here. Our mission is to help our clients understand, analyse and mitigate political risk in the CEE by providing valuable information and in-depth analyses of the evolving political environment. We apply a fact-based approach and operate strictly transparently, in full compliance with the prevailing anti-corruption laws.
Our experts based in our Budapest headquarters, Brussels, and throughout CEE draw on their experience in the fields of civil service, law, governmental affairs and corporate diplomacy to provide a range of strategic advisory services. We consider the CEE not only our home soil, but also an important and as-yet unutilised tool for addressing challenges posed by European policy developments. Since their accession to the EU in 2004, CEE member states have completed their first EU presidencies and have gradually mastered EU internal dynamics. The EU’s CEE member states and the Visegrad Cooperation countries in particular have become increasingly adept at articulating and representing their national interests in the EU policy-making process and have developed critical government, expert, and stakeholder networks in Brussels and member state capitals. Explico is unique in recognising these networks as an untapped yet efficient and cost-effective mechanism for gathering information about and engaging with EU decision-making processes and managing EU policy risks.
Our mastery of these networks, as well as our skillset in public policy, regulatory affairs, and communication, further combined with our legal and trade promotion capabilities, make Explico a good match for any international company considering entering the CEE or seeking CEE allies in achieving various public policy goals within the EU.
Multinational companies operating in this part of the world often feel they are at the mercy of regulators and legislators. A lack of institutionalised consultation proceedings with external stakeholders in law-making procedures, less stringent investment protection rules compared to Western Europe or the U.S., recurring anti-capitalist sentiments, government activism, and more prevalent populist attitudes together create heightened political risk for economic operators here compared to more developed markets. Businesses seeking to grow in the CEE require responses to such risk that are locally tailored while corresponding to the expectations of a multinational company. We are able to translate local CEE challenges to the language spoken in global board rooms and help our clients to analyse and mitigate the effect of political risk on their CEE operations.
We mainly work for Fortune 500 companies with a commercial interest in the CEE or which seek to use their regional presence as leverage in pursuing public policy aims in Brussels.
By providing tailor-made strategic advice, we help our clients understand and manage political, regulatory and policy risk in the CEE and EU – our expertise in identifying, analysing, and mitigating such risks ensures that our clients’ businesses can focus on sustainable profit and growth.
We do this by working closely with our clients to understand their goals, needs, priorities and interests and then provide the support needed to realise them. We provide a range of analytic tools and services to help our clients achieve long-term growth, including:
We apply a process-driven approach to our client work, evolved over nearly a decade of experience. Using our unique service methodology, for each engagement we design a pre-defined scope, step plan and set of deliverables that render it easy to keep track of developments and evaluate the results.
Explico has a diverse international team comprised of Slovakian, Polish, Romanian, Croatian, Hungarian, British and U.S. staff members located in Brussels, at our Budapest headquarters, and in other CEE capitals. Our language capabilities include all CEE languages, in addition to English, Chinese, French, German, Spanish and Italian.
Our CEE capabilities paired with our Brussels presence and close cooperation with some of the most prominent public policy firms in Brussels gives us access to an extensive global network of public policy advisors, enabling us to take on pan-European assignments.
An Explico Board Member and CEO, Gábor directs Explico’s operations, including its Brussels presence. Leading on public policy projects for key Explico accounts, Gábor provides clients with focused and pragmatic solutions that show his deep understanding of the intersection of business and regulation. Gábor started his career in 2007 at PwC, where he advised on regulatory and government affairs projects in addition to providing legal advice on international M&A and financing transactions. Gábor then spent several years in-house, advising the board of a large corporate group comprising mainly IT outsourcing service providers working for public utility companies, large retail banks and other CEE infrastructure service providers. As in-house advisor, Gábor managed public policy risk in relation to both the company and its interface with its clients’ sectors across multiple jurisdictions.
With over 20 years of public administration experience, Bernadett joined Explico from the Hungarian Prime Minister’s Cabinet Office, where she was the PM’s deputy EU policy advisor. In this position, Bernadett was staffed on every relevant file in Hungary’s role in EU decision-making for nearly a decade and coordinated at the highest level with the stakeholders shaping those files. At Explico, Bernadett manages key ICT accounts and is also responsible for the strategic management of government relations. She has an extensive network reaching throughout the EU and in Member States’ governments, particularly in the Visegrad Cooperation countries.
Gábor joined Explico in 2017 following a long career in public administration in Budapest and Brussels, mastering Hungarian and European policy development and building a broad network of technical and regulatory experts and political leaders, particularly in the agriculture sector. Prior to joining Explico, he was the Head of Unit of Trade Policy, forging Hungary’s position on international trade agreements for the EU (e.g., TTIP, CETA, TiSA, ITA). He contributed to the Multiannual Financial Framework of the EU (EU budget 2014-20) and took part in Hungary’s EU Presidency in Brussels. Gábor manages Explico’s key agricultural, FMCG and trade accounts, including clients’ relationship management with EU institutions.
A lawyer with a long track record in high quality public policy and complex regulatory advisory services, Miklós founded Explico in 2011 to provide such services in CEE to a client list that started with leading global telco companies and has since expanded to serve clients in a wide range of industries, from tech and ICT to agribusiness. After completing an LLM at Georgetown University, where he was a Fulbright Scholar, Miklós spent several years at international law firms before joining British Telecom, where he was Director of Regulation and Governmental Affairs for seven years, with responsibility for regulation and government relations in 25 countries in the CEE and Russia/CIS regions. Splitting his time between London and Budapest, Miklós is Chairman of the Board of Explico. His main responsibility is Explico’s strategic management.