One of the more interesting characters in global events is the media and data publisher George Friedman. Considered to be a significant influence in global politics, he has based his business on researching and predicting world events. He studies governments and economic incentives and then tries to predict what important leaders will do, all inside of a profit-seeking enterprise. What exactly he does with all the data he gathers is subject to quite a bit of speculation, although it is presumed he both sells data and influence even to politicians.
Really, forecasting the major moves of leaders has a huge impact on world business. A person can literally make financial bets based on developments, and knowing politics can greatly sway the profitability of some industries. Plenty of people want serious data, and playing the middleman gives George Friedman considerable economic and political leverage.