Our global condition continues to change on a daily basis, as is evidenced, in part, by the ever widening chasm between the haves and the have nots. These changes are being broadcast to a much larger audience than ever before thanks to the 24/7 news cycle and the myriad methods of transmitting data. But is this feverish dissemination providing useful and in-depth information, or just sensational, shallow sound bites? The awareness by the developed world of the developing world, in general, is woefully deficient. Because our economic, social, religious and sports institutions are all part of our new global perspective, we must arm ourselves with accurate information about the plight of the “bottom billion” (Paul Collier’s metaphor for the poorest, one-sixth of the population on the planet) if only to put our own fortunes into proper perspective, but also to understand their circumstances and start to figure out the best ways to assist them. In the Foreword of Abhijit Banerjee’s insightful book, Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty, [this book] “makes clear why hope is vital and knowledge critical, why we have to keep on trying even when the challenge looks overwhelming. Success isn’t always as far away as it looks.”
I have created the Frontier Markets Compendium (FMC) to provide that education and knowledge via a subscription-based, comprehensive website that is both static and dynamic. The static side of the site will be the repository for hundreds of data points and 13 indices, most of which change in value on an annual basis, providing a homogeneous foundation of information on our 64* Frontier Market countries. The dynamic side will incorporate the blogs, analyses and commentaries from authors around the world covering current events in these 64 countries. FMC will include open forums for discussion and opposing views, an extensive bibliography, and news flashes emanating from our various feeds. Current events will include links to relevant conferences and other media. A “soft” launch is expected in late April 2012.
A fallout from this vast assembly of information will benefit the prospective frontier markets investor by giving him a sufficient foundation of knowledge with which to pursue more specific investment related analyses. As an investor myself, I strongly believe that the frontier markets will deliver market-beating returns whether by way of public equity and fixed income or through well positioned Private Equity. FMC will arm you, the subscriber, with enough knowledge to get a good jump on country comparisons and the challenges and opportunities presented by this asset class.
I want to empower people with knowledge about the Frontier Markets to become familiar with, and perhaps foster solutions for, this too-often neglected, impoverished segment of our global society.
Welcome to the Frontier Markets Compendium.
*a combination of the frontier market countries that comprise three published indices and those followed by two FM equity managers.