H.E Ambassador (Eng) Mahboub Maalim – Executive Secretary, Inter-Governmental Authority on Development
Eng. Mahboub Maalim is the Executive Secretary, Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD). In 2013 Eng. Maalim was appointed as an Ambassador and retained at IGAD.
He served as Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Water and Irrigation. Prior to this he served as Permanent Secretary, Special Programmes in the Office of the President since July 2004 to August 2005 during which time he ably coordinated disaster risk reduction programmes, Arid and Semi Arid Lands Projects among others. He is recognized for his dedicated service. He is awarded the Chief of the Order of the Burning Spear (CBS) for his distinguished and dedicated service.
Earlier on, he was a coordinator of various multinational projects among them World Bank’s financed “The Drought Recovery Project in the arid lands of Kenya” for two years from 1994 to 1996. Upon completion of the World Bank project he oversaw the success of yet another major project as a Deputy National Project Coordinator as well as National Coordinator, Arid lands resource management project for another seven years between 1997 and 2003.
Luuk Zonneveld – Chief Executive Officer, Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries (BIO)
Luuk Zonneveld has worked in development since the 1980s, in particular in the promotion and financing of the private sector.
From 2008 to 2012, he was Managing Director of the Belgian non-profit organisation Vredeseilanden. Previously, he was one of the architects of the success of Fairtrade labeling, as Managing director of its global umbrella Fairtrade International in Bonn, from 2001 to 2007.
After graduating in Psychology, Sociology and Economics in France and the Netherlands, he started his career as a journalist. Later he held various positions in the international trade business and within NGOs and organisations active in North-South Cooperation such as Oxfam, in the Netherlands, Germany and Cuba.
Bashir Mamman Ifo – President, ECOWAS Bank for Investment & Development
Mr. IFO is the President of the ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development Bank. He is a seasoned banker and administrator with over thirty-one (31) years of professional experience in the public and private sectors.
He holds a Masters degree in Business Administration (MBA) in Finance and a Bachelors degree in Business Administration (Finance) from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria.
Mr. IFO has held several senior Management positions in the institution including that of Head of Financial Operations Division and Director of Treasury in the erswhile ECOWAS Fund for Cooperation, Compensation and Development (ECOWAS Fund) which was transformed into the ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID). The Bank’s transformation led to the creation of two subsidiaries namely, the esrtwhile ECOWAS Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and ECOWAS Regional Investment Bank (ERIB) where Mr. IFO served as Head of Finance and Administration and later, Acting Managing Director.
He was appointed President of EBID on 11 October 2011 after serving as Vice-President, Finance and Corporate Services from 2007.
During the thirteenth (13th) ordinary session of the Board of Governors held in Bamako, Republic of Mali, on June 15 2015, Mr. IFO’s tenure was renewed for another term of four (4) years, with effect from October 10 2015.
Mr. IFO was awarded the Grand Officer of the National Order of Benin in January 2014 by the Government of the Republic of Benin.
Musimbi Kanyoro – President & Chief Executive Director, Global Fund for Women
Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro is President and CEO of Global Fund for Women. She is globally recognized for her leadership of organizations and initiatives that advance women’s and girls’ human rights, and philanthropy for communities. Musimbi is passionate about using philanthropy and technology to drive social change.
During her time at Global Fund for Women, Musimbi has seen the organization surpass $140 million in grantmaking and spearheaded a successful merger with another non-profit. She continues to expand the organization’s influence through her participation in major international dialogues, frequent contributions to major media outlets, and speaking engagements in prominent global forums. Before joining Global Fund for Women as CEO, Musimbi was Director for Population and Reproductive Health at David and Lucile Packard Foundation.
Musimbi was appointed general secretary (CEO) of the World YWCA in 1998, the first non-white woman to hold the role after 150 years of existence. During her tenure, she made the organization a go-to organization for young women’s leadership and for HIV prevention and care. She also transformed the World YWCA into a young-women-led organization, with young women under 30 making up 55% of the Global Board of Trustees. Based in Geneva, Musimbi also worked as the Executive Secretary for Women in Church and Society at the Lutheran World Federation for 10 years, where she influenced numerous policies including ensuring an equal 50% of women on governing boards and allocating no less than 40% of the Federation resources to causes that impact women’s lives.
She was a visiting scholar at Harvard University, and has received several recognitions and awards, including a leadership award from the Kenya Government, and recognition as one of the 21 women leaders for the 21st century by Women’s E-News. In 2015, Forbes magazine named her one of 10 women “power brands” and in 2016, she was named to the Forty Women to Watch Over 40 list for making an impact in philanthropy and gender equality.
Musimbi serves on the UN Women Civil Society Advisory Board; the World Bank Gender Advisory Board; the Boards of CARE, Landesa, and Sheryl Sandberg’s OptionB.Org; Aspen Leaders Council; the Global Citizen and CHIME FOR CHANGE Girls’ and Women’s Committee; and the Reference Group of FP 2020, an initiative of the Gates Foundation, UKAID, USAID, and UNFPA, managed by UN Foundation. She is also a Champion for SheDecides.
Erik Sandersen – Executive Vice President, Financial Institution, Norfund
Erik Sandersen is Executive Vice President of Financial Institutions at Norfund, where his focus is on implementing and managing Norfund’s investments in banks and microfinance institutions in Africa, Asia and Central America.
He joined Norfund as Investment Director in 2014 and is today part of the company’s management team. Prior to joining Norfund, he was co-founder and partner of the venture capital company Incitia Ventures for 10 years.
In addition, Erik has had several senior roles in the IT industry as well as being a consultant in the Boston Consulting Group in London and Oslo. He sits and has been on several boards in Europe and Africa. Erik has an MBA from Stanford and an M.Sc. From NTNU.
Suleiman Kiggundu – Regional Director, Africa, CDC Group
Suleiman is Regional Director for Africa at CDC Group plc. Established by the UK Government in 1948, CDC is the world’s oldest development finance institution that is currently invested in over 1,300 companies supporting over 1.1 million jobs in various developing countries.
Suleiman is also Executive Chairman of CFS Group, a pan-African financial services group with interests in capital markets, investment banking and private equity. Until early 2014, Suleiman spent 10 years as Group CEO at CFS Group, focused on transforming it into a leading indigenously-owned financial services provider in sub-Saharan Africa.
Prior to this, he spent 10 years with the HSBC Group in several senior positions, including Head of Corporate Banking for Sub-Saharan Africa at HSBC Equator Bank plc and Head of Corporate & Institutional Banking at HSBC Bank plc. Coordinating HSBC’s debt and risk advisory offerings in Africa, he personally completed transactions in more than 15 countries across Africa.
Suleiman holds a BSc in Electrical Engineering and a BA in Economics (cum laude) both from Yale University, as well as post-graduate diplomas in banking, finance and corporate governance.
Anand Chiplunkar – Senior Advisor & former Director, Urban & Water Development, Asian Development Bank
Dr. Anand Chiplunkar has a unique expertise of more than three decades in the fields of water and sanitation, environment management and infrastructure. At the Asian Development Bank, Manila he was the Director, Urban Development and Water Division in the Central and West Asia Department.
He also is the Chair of Urban Community of Practice and Core Member of the PPP Community of Practice in ADB. He provides guidance in water, wastewater and solid waste management and urban transport projects. His expertise lies in developing Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects in partnership with government agencies in urban, transport, industrial area development and tourism sectors.
He also has conducted numerous Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) studies for infrastructure sectors and industries. He has been a Hubert Humphrey Fellow at the University of Washington, Seattle and worked with the US Environment Protection Agency.
H.E Prof. Sarah Anyang Agbor – Commissioner for Human Resources, Science and Technology, African Union Commission
Professor Sarah Mbi Enow Anyang Agbor is the African Union Commissioner for Human Resources, Science and Technology (elected in July 2017) which consists of: Education, Youth and Capacity Development and Science and Technology. Before being elected, she was the Deputy Vice-Chancellor in charge of Research, Cooperation and Relations with the Business World (DVC-RCB), University of Bamenda-North West Region of Cameroon. As DVC-RCB she promoted research; efficiently and effectively managed the University’s educational and research programs as well as oversee initiatives and action plans in the University’s Research Strategic Planning.
She has served as Inspector of Academic Affairs No 1. at the Ministry of Higher Education, Cameroon during which she was responsible for evaluation and monitoring of Higher Education Institutions in Cameroon in strategic leadership, academic planning and quality, teaching and learning. She was the Focal Point for Pan African University; Conference of Ministers of Education in Africa (COMEDAF); Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers and most of all UNESCO. Moreover, she represented the Cameroon Minister of Higher Education in several capacities.
Prof. Sarah Anyang Agbor is a Cameroonian and Professor of African and Commonwealth Literatures. She has authored three text books and over thirty peer reviewed book chapters and scientific publications.
Paul Szkiler – Chief Executive Officer, Truestone Impact Investment Management
Paul Szkiler’s career spans almost 40 years of working in the City of London, in the financial services industry. He has spent much time in the voluntary sector, including co-founding the international charity ‘Children in Crisis’.
Paul and his company Truestone are well known in the social impact investment world for pioneering innovative private equity approaches, most notably in establishing a number of companies in West Africa. The companies generally have three objectives; to be profitable on a sustainable basis, to have a measurable social outcome, and to focus on mentoring.
Over the years he established the company Truestone Asset Management Ltd, which grew as a private wealth management company, eventually being sold in 2014.
He is the founder of A Call to Business, which is an international organisation focusing on discipleship in the market place. Most recently in 2015 Paul has moved into the hotel industry, and continues to develop themes attempting to integrate the spheres of society with an emphasis on biblical thinking.
Mark Eckstein – Director, Environmental & Social Responsibility, CDC Group
Prior to CDC Mark led the sustainable finance team at WWF US for 6 years and was also part of the environment and social risk management group at the International Finance Corporation in Washington DC for eight years, and was an Environment Adviser at DFID for 5 years.
Mark has an MSc in Applied Hydrobiology from UCW Cardiff.
Kecia Rust is the Executive Director and founder of the Centre for Affordable Housing Finance in Africa (CAHF). She is a housing policy specialist and has worked with both public and private sector practitioners in promoting access to affordable housing and housing finance in Africa for the past 20 years.
She was the Housing Finance Coordinator at the FinMark Trust from 2003-2014, from where CAHF was established. Over the span of her career, Kecia has consulted and undertaken research in affordable housing finance, residential property assets and property markets, rental and social housing, mortgage market development, and the creation of sustainable human settlements, among other issues.
Kecia participated in the Wharton School’s International Housing Finance Programme, U.S.A. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree with Distinction from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, U.S.A., and a Masters of Management from the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa.
Babatomiwa Adesida – Private Sector & Philanthropy, SDG Fund
Babatomiwa Adesida is the Private Sector and Philanthropy Engagement Consultant for the Sustainable Development Goals Fund (SDG Fund), a United Nations mechanism; based in New York; that brings together UN agencies, national governments, academia, civil society and business to achieve SDGs. His primary role is to engage the Private Sector to establish sustainable partnerships with the UN through the SDG Fund in numerous countries around the world.
He has over 15 years of Private Sector experience and has been involved in the development, implementation and monitoring of projects and policies through the private sector in partnership with numerous governments in different countries some of which include Nigeria, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Tanzania, Zambia, Switzerland, Singapore and U.A.E. His most recent Private sector role was with Sahara Group where he served as the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Manager for Sahara Foundation; a subsidiary of Sahara Group Limited.
Babatomiwa received a B.Sc with honours in Sociology from the University of Ibadan in Nigeria and MSc. in Public Policy from the University of Bristol, U.K where he won a partial scholarship for international students. He is extremely passionate about Social Reconstruction particularly in developing nations and plays an integral role in promoting the welfare of the underprivileged in the society through partnerships with various organizations and like-minded individuals. He has been nominated for and also received several CSR awards some of which include the Future Awards Nigeria, the Nigeria CSR awards and the 100 most impactful CSR leaders (Global listing) in India.
Jerry Parkes – Managing Principal, Injaro Investments
Jerry Parkes is the CEO and co-founder of Injaro Investments Limited. Established in 2009, Injaro manages a $50m triple bottom line fund which seeks to achieve economic, social and environmental sustainability in its portfolio companies. The fund has invested close to $28m in fourteen companies across five West African countries and its portfolio has benefitted about 880,000 persons mainly comprising smallholder farmers, low income persons and their families.
Out of eleven companies featured in the agricultural section of The London Stock Exchange report, Companies to Inspire Africa 2017, five were portfolio companies of Injaro. In 2015, the fund was also featured on the Impact Assets 50, a list of top impact investment fund managers globally.
Prior to Injaro, Jerry was a Director at a UK-based fund manager and activist private equity investor. He also served a variety of clients in an advisory capacity at Accenture, Merrill Lynch, UBS and Technoserve.
He holds an M.Eng. Electrical and Electronic Engineering with French from the University of Manchester and an MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. He also serves on the Boards of African Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (AVCA) and the Engineers Without Borders (EWB) Canada.
Pedro Neves – Executive Board Member, UN Economic Commission for Europe
Responsible for originating and managing over 10 billion USD in infrastructure asset deals in over 60 countries in Europe, Africa, the Americas and Asia. Assets deals range from Oil & Gas (upstream and downstream), Power (fossil and renewable in production, transmission and distribution), Environment (water, water treatment & solid waste, Mobility (Airports, Ports, Roads, Railways, Metro), Social Infrastructure (Health, Education, Public Administration), Real Estate and Urban Development, Mining, Industry and Logistics.
Pedro has achieved success managing investment operations, in new ventures, new markets and with new partners due to more than 25 years of experience operating management projects and SPV’s (special purpose vehicles) in the development and exploitation phases. His, 7+ years of experience working with the public sector (United Nations, government and state owned entities) designing and implementing policies for public sector investment have given him a unique perspective on public interest that has been key in originating deals and developing PPPs throughout the world. These activities cover the full life cycle of asset development starting with interpreting infrastructure gaps, analyzing demographics and market tendencies, designing products and business models, defining strategy and aligning goals between share and stakeholders, starting up / reorganizing of management teams, carrying out fund raising (debt, equity, mezzanine), M&A and managing value growth.
Has been lecturing on Business Development Strategy since 2001 and is the founder of the first MBA on Urban Renewal for which he has lectured on Sustainable and Urban Development and Urban Renewal Business since 2010.
Onyeka Akumah is the Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Farmcrowdy – a start-up he founded in September 2016 and is referred to as Nigeria’s first Digital Agriculture platform. Impacting the lives of over 1,500 small-scale farmers already in their first 5 months, Farmcrowdy’s focus is on increasing food production, impacting 50,000 small scale farmers in Nigeria in the next 5 years and engaging 2 million Nigerian youths to participate in Agriculture.
Prior to Farmcrowdy, Onyeka was the Chief Commercial Officer of Travelbeta.com – one of Nigeria’s leading online travel agencies with over 300,000 hotels and flights to over 900 destinations worldwide. Previously, he was also the founder of a leading digital management business called ANOZIM Group with three subsidiaries focused on Internet Marketing, Online Publishing and Digital Media Sales with clients including GTBank, Cheki.com.ng, TOTAL and Guardian Newspaper.
Onyeka Akumah has been referred to as one of the leading creative internet and online marketing entrepreneurs focused on building household names out of internet businesses in Nigeria. He has worked as the Vice-President of Marketing at Konga.com, Director of Marketing and Partnerships at Jumia.com, Online Marketing Manager at Wakanow.com, E-Marketing Coordinator for Deloitte in West, East and Central Africa, Online & Mobile Coordinator at Guaranty Trust Bank and Webmaster for British Council in Nigeria.
Onyeka graduated with a First Class Distinction from Sikkim Manipal University, India, where he obtained a degree in Applied Information Technology. He has been nominated for several awards including winning the Digital Marketing Personality of the Year 2015 award from the Nigerian Technology Awards and many others for his efforts in building technology businesses. He is currently running an MBA program in Marketing at the Edinburgh Business School, Scotland.
Christelle Kupa is a financial professional with over 15 years of experience in investment banking, alternative investments and development finance. Multi-lingual, as a Belgian national of Congolese heritage, with the majority of her career in the City of London, she’s acted and continues to do so, as a ”bridge” to ensure that the combination of social impact and financial return can be achieved.
After years in investment banking where she worked on complex financial assets and instruments, Christelle decided to reorient her career towards impact investment in order to serve the people who really matter. As a result, she founded Uhusiano Capital as an enterprise devoted to “real people, real projects, real assets, real impact”.She is committed to touching the lives at the unbanked or at the bottom of the pyramid while ensuring that investors can also have a financial return from quality bespoke structures.
She has a degree from the University of Westminster, a BA in Business Studies and Finance. Throughout the span of her career, Christelle has held senior positions in many organisations in financial services including J.P. Morgan and Deutsche Bank, amongst others. Christelle speaks French, English, Flemish, and basic Swahili, which enables her to work more intimately across a wide variety of markets. She is committed to the diligent governance of financial developments and philanthropic endeavours throughout Africa, including acting as a trustee, for a foundation that focuses on maternal health for African women.
Chris Isaac – Regional Director, Investments & Business Development, AgDevCo
Chris was one of AgDevCo’s founding directors and its first full-time employee. He has been working on development finance issues in Africa for the past 14 years, with two extended periods living overseas. Chris’s experience includes working in infrastructure project development at InfraCo Africa, as an economic adviser for the UK’s Department for International Development, and an adviser and speechwriter to the Minister of Finance in the Namibian government. His career started as a corporate finance specialist with Arthur Andersen in London, after completing the prestigious Arthur Andersen university scholarship programme. Chris has economics degrees from University College, Oxford (BA Hons) and the London School of Economics (MSc) and holds an advanced qualification in investment appraisal.
Other current positions: Chris holds a number of Board positions in AgDevCo’s investee companies, including as Chairman of the Board of ECA, a maize milling business in Mozambique. Outside of AgDevCo, he is non-executive Chairman of a social enterprise in South London, UK.
Tara Sabre-Collier – Co-Founder, Affiniti
Tara Sabre Collier is an impact investing specialist and Co-founder at Affiniti. Prior to that, she was with EY Dubai, where she managed strategic advisory services for government agencies and family businesses, regarding investment decisions, growth strategies and private sector development. She worked at GroFin Capital, a pan-African impact investing fund. She is also the co-founder of EOSS Consulting, an economic development consulting firm based in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Collier has a decade of experience working with government, non-profits, and entrepreneurs on business strategy and economic development, including projects in Brazil, Angola, Mozambique, Peru, USA, Nigeria, South Africa and Jordan. She earned her MBA at Oxford University, where she was a Skoll Scholar with Oxford University’s Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship. Prior to her MBA, she completed her MPA in International Management & Policy at New York University and her BA at Spelman College. She speaks English, Spanish, Portuguese and French and is an occasional blogger.
Ben Good – Chief Executive Officer, Energy4Impact
Ben Good is an engineer with 20 years’ experience in the renewable energy and utility sectors. He has undertaken a range of senior operational, commercial, financial, and corporate finance roles with various businesses and projects across Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas.
Ben joined us from D1 Oils plc, the UK-listed renewable energy business with interests in India and southern Africa, where he was CEO. He has a degree in Engineering, Economics and Management from Oxford University.
Onyekachi Wambu – Executive Director, African Foundation for Development (AFFORD)
Mr. Onyekachi Wambu is Executive Director of the African Foundation for Development (AFFORD), a UK based charity with a mission to expand and enhance the contributions of Africans in the diaspora in order to advance Africa’s development. AFFORD is a pioneer and innovator in the field of policy and practice of ‘migration and development’. AFFORD’s advocacy work contributed to international recognition of the importance of the diaspora in African and international development, and in the subsequent initiation of new policies, programs, funds and schemes. AFFORD’s SCORE4africa project captured the development work of high net African footballers, while Africa-Gives created a platform for young Africans to give time, skills and money for African development.
Educated at the University of Essex, and Sewlyn College, Wambu worked previously as a print and broadcast journalist, spending time as a senior producer and documentary director at the BBC and for PBS. He has written extensively on Africa and the African diaspora. His publications include Empire Windrush – 50 Years of Writing about Black Britain and Under the Tree of Talking – Leadership for Change in Africa. Wambu has appeared as an expert contributor on migration and development issues to numerous high level panels and forums. He is on the board of Fahamu, the social action platform expert contributor on migration and development issues to numerous high level panels and forums. He is on the board of Fahamu, the social action platform and writes a monthly column “Back to the Future” in New African Magazine.
Aissata Coulibaly – Senior Manager, EY
Aïssata is leading the ICT working group within the Executive Committee of the Luxembourg Africa Investments association founded to foster and promote business relations between Africa and Europe in general and the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg in particular.
Aïssata is an Audit Senior Manager in the commercial and public sector of EY in Luxembourg with focus on telecommunication, media, technology and private equity. She has more than 11 years of relevant experience working in Luxembourg, Australia and the UK on large audit engagements which took her regularly to Africa.
Aïssata holds a master degree from Kogod School of Business (Washington D.C.) and is a chartered certified accountant with audit qualification and practicing certificate. Aïssata is also certified accountant in Luxembourg and member of the quality control commission of the Institut des Réviseurs d’Entreprises.
With strong focus on emerging markets and Africa in particular, Aïssata is at the forefront of promoting the African growth story and advocating for greater level of impact investments into Africa so as to realize the continent’s possibilities.