Who we are

Why the name Graphene Economics™?

Graphene is the world’s first 2D material and was first isolated in 2004 by two researchers at The University of Manchester. It’s 200 times stronger than steel, but very flexible and is the thinnest material possible – so thin that it’s transparent. It’s ultra-light, but extremely tough, and is the world’s most effective conductor. Scientists are working on a plethora of potential applications for graphene.

We chose the name Graphene Economics™ because we aim to exhibit many of the same characteristics:

  • “Light” but extraordinarily strong: we’re a lean, but experienced team with 25 years of transfer pricing experience between us. We’re not a big firm with a TP division tacked on. We are a specialist economics transfer pricing advisory firm with a focus on Africa – this is what we do.
  • Flexible: our understanding of the nuances in various African countries, combined with our experience across many different industries, means we are positioned to identify, develop and implement the appropriate transfer pricing solutions for you to address the specific economic and market conditions you face in Africa.
  • Responsive: just as graphene is a brilliant conductor – enormously responsive to an electric current – so we hope to delight our clients with our responsiveness and turnaround times as Graphene Economics™ by providing the best transfer pricing services possible.


Graphene Economics™ prides itself on providing quality advice from some of the most experienced minds in African transfer pricing. Our team of professionals will assist you with your transfer pricing challenges and help you navigate the complex African cross-border transactions landscape.

Michael Hewson

Michael Hewson

Michael founded Graphene Economics™ in 2017 with a vision of creating a specialist economics-focused African transfer pricing firm.

He has over 12 years of experience in transfer pricing in Africa and was a partner at EY. Under his leadership, the EY South African transfer pricing team grew to the largest professional services TP team in Africa was awarded the 2016 International Tax Review award for South African Transfer Pricing Firm of the Year.

Before joining EY, Michael was an Associate Director at Deloitte.

He has a MCom in Financial Economics, Honours in Econometrics and a Higher Diploma in Tax (Law) and has contributed to two books on transfer pricing, as well as guest lecturing at the University of Johannesburg and the University of Pretoria.

Michael is the Vice Chair of the transfer pricing sub-committee of the South African Institute of Tax Practitioners (SAIT). He initiated the development of a trainee programme for university graduates to specialise in transfer pricing, which is run through SAIT. It is in the process of being accredited and certified as an official qualification.


Valdis Leikus

Valdis joined Graphene Economics™ in August 2017 as an Associate Director.

He has over nine years of experience in tax advisory and transfer pricing. Valdis started his professional career in his home country, Lithuania, where he joined EY’s tax team in 2008.

In 2014 Valdis joined EY South Africa’s transfer pricing team. He played an instrumental role in winning some of the biggest Pan-African TP projects for the firm, and contributed significantly to the growth of the South African and other African TP practices (including Tanzania, Cameroon, and others). While Valdis was part of EY, the team became the largest professional services TP team in Africa, and was awarded the 2016 International Tax Review award for South African Transfer Pricing Firm of the Year.

Valdis has a Master’s Degree in Financial Markets (Economics) and a Bachelor’s Degree (with distinction) in Economics (Accounting). He is a member of the South African Institute of Tax Practitioners (SAIT) as well as Institute of Business Advisors Southern Africa (IBASA).

The Graphene Economics team at work and at play

Your African transfer pricing specialist