Another shady data company emerges from the ashes of Cambridge Analytica. It's fronted by a man who, in an undercover documentary, once boasted of Cambridge Analytica's links to government intelligence agencies. And the new company has already won a contract in an unnamed African state, the FT reports.
The sole investor in this new firm is Ahmad Al-Khatib, 29, who appears in a video on AUSPEX's home page.
Aliya Ram and Cynthia O'Murchu at the Financial Times:
A group of former Cambridge Analytica employees has set up a new business that will use its data analysis techniques in the Middle East and Africa, betting they can shed the tainted reputation of the company at the heart of a massive Facebook breach that affected up to 87m users.
The launch on Wednesday evening comes just a day after the UK's data regulator started criminal proceedings against SCL Elections, Cambridge Analytica's parent company, for allegedly failing to properly deal with a data request.
Cambridge Analytica's technique of combining behavioural insights with other data has become the subject of controversy but is still considered valuable by companies and governments.
The new London-based company, to be called Auspex International, will be headed by Mark Turnbull, former head of Cambridge Analytica's political team outside of the US and UK who was caught in an undercover documentary boasting of the company's links to intelligence agencies.
Its sole investor is Ahmad Al-Khatib, a former director of Emerdata, a business that was established to acquire and rebrand Cambridge Analytica before it was hit by the Facebook scandal.
Seven other members of Mr Turnbull's Cambridge Analytica team have joined the new company, which has already won a contract for political work in an unnamed African state, according to Mr Al-Khatib and Mr Turnbull.
Various 'new business registries' online show their address as follows:
AUSPEX INTERNATIONAL LTD
Dsc Metropolitan Ltd
1 The Courtyard
The company's Date of Incorporation is listed as June 7, 2018.
Another spawn-of-Cambridge Analytica company emerges. "Auspex International" launched by ex-Bell Pottinger, ex-Cambridge Analytica director, Mark "what-a-CV" Turnbull. Has already won contract for "unnamed African state". More great work from @aliya__ramhttps://t.co/XydkZGQVc5
— Carole Cadwalladr (@carolecadwalla) July 11, 2018