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Chairman of the Supervisory Board
Arnold Ekpe is currently the Honorary President of the Business Council for Africa in the UK; Chairman of SFRE Luxembourg, an investment company that invested in small banks globally; non-executive director of Crown Agents Bank and Crown Agents Investment Management, UK; trustee of Vision for A Nation, a U.K. charity for the visually impaired; and non-executive director of Dangote Flour Mills in Nigeria.
He was previously a two time CEO of the Ecobank Group responsible for building it into the leading pan African bank; former CEO of UBA, the Nigeria based pan African bank; former partner in Africa Capital Alliance, the leading West Africa private equity company; former Citibank head of corporate and structured trade finance for Sub Saharan Africa; and former non-executive director and chair of the risk committee of the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority.
Arnold Ekpe is passionate about the application of fintech and digital technology to pan African banking and financial services.
Vice-Chairman of the Supervisory Board
Jean Michel Piveteau has spent his entire career in the banking sector in Asia (Beijing, Bangkok, New Delhi, Taipei, Bahrain and Abu Dhabi). He created and headed four subsidiaries of the Paribas Bank in India (5 years), Thailand and Vietnam (4 years), Taiwan (4 years) and China (8 years).
He is the President of the Chinese section of the France Foreign Trade Advisors which brings together more than 100 representatives of French multinationals. He is also an advisor to the X-PM Transition Partners firm whose activity in Asia is to support foreign companies wishing to operate in changing and very competitive environments.
Knight of the National Order of the Legion of Honour, Officer of the National Order of Merit. Jean-Michel Piveteau graduated from the Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris and holds a PhD in Business Administration of the Paris Dauphine University.
Investment Director of the NMI Frontier Fund
Prior to joining NMI, he worked for 10 years at Verdane Capital Advisors, a Nordic focused venture capital company investing in early stage companies and portfolio acquisitions. Previously, Mr. Frigaard also worked at McKinsey & Company where he served clients in various sectors, with a focus on strategic planning and operational excellence. He has also held positions at Médecins Sans Frontierès and Mamut ASA. In addition, Mr. Frigaard has served on numerous boards in the Nordic region as well as in Europe and the US.
Mr. Frigaard holds a MBA from INSEAD (France) and a Siviløkonom degree from Norwegian Business School. In addition to Norwegian, he speaks English and French.
Managing Partner of APIS Partners
Udayan brings to Apis his deep domain expertise and a global network of industry professionals, having co-founded Anthemis (one of the leading VC investors and corporate advisors in Financial Technology).
Formerly, Udayan was MD and Global Head of Financial Technology at Deutsche Bank and prior to that, a member of the European Specialty Finance practice at Credit Suisse. He has advised on a number of flagship PE transactions in the industry, such as Abraaj’s AED2bn acquisition of Network International, Helios’ acquisition of Interswitch (Nigeria), and Advent and Bain’s £2bn acquisition of WorldPay.
Additionally, he has been the lead advisor on a number of high profile financial technology and payments transactions including: KKR’s USD28bn acquisition of First Data, Visa’s IPO, Deutsche Borse’s acquisition of ISE, and the Markit Group’s acquisition of International Index Corp. Udayan is more recently the co-founder of Anthemis Group, a diversified financial services firm investing in and advising technology-led businesses globally. Whilst at Anthemis, Udayan invested in over 20 companies in the global financial services space.
Udayan has an MA (Cantab) from Trinity College, the University of Cambridge.
Head of Division Banks & Corporates, Western Europe Department at EIB
Alain Nadeau has been working since 1997 at the European Investment Bank (EIB - Luxembourg) where he currently holds the position of Head of the “Banks & Corporates” Division, Western Europe Department.
Through his various positions, he was involved in the direct funding of innovation programs in four markets: France, Benelux, UK and Ireland. He also contributed to the financing of flagship projects such as the Moroccan Solar Plan. Between 2004 and 2009, he was responsible for the establishment and development of the "Institutional Affairs" Unit within the European Neighbor and Partner Countries Department.
Previously, Alain Nadeau held the position of Deputy Office Manager at the Direction du Trésor de Paris (Treasury Department -2 years) and the position of Loan Officer at the Agency.
Alain Nadeau holds a postgraduate degree in Regional Economics and Regional Planning (University of Poitiers) and a Masters in Economics (University of Angers).
Managing Director at J.C. Flowers & Co.
Thierry Porté is a Managing Director of J.C. Flowers & Co. LLC, a private equity firm focused exclusively on financial services. In this capacity, he currently serves as Executive Chairman of NPG Wealth Management, Chairman of the board of directors of Equita S.I.M., Chairman of the board of directors of Fidea, sits on the board of Compagnie Européenne De Prévoyance and attends all board meetings of SICOM Limited.
Prior to joining JC Flowers in 2009, Thierry Porté was with Shinsei Bank, Limited for approximately five years, where he served as President and Chief Executive Officer and in various other executive roles. Before joining Shinsei's Management team, Thierry Porté spent 22 years at Morgan Stanley & Co., where he served in various capacities in capital markets, corporate finance and management in New York, London and Tokyo, ultimately becoming a Managing Director and the President, Representative Director and Branch Manager of Morgan Stanley Japan.
Thierry Porté received a B.A. magna cum laude in Economics from Harvard College and is a Baker Scholar graduate of the Harvard Business School.
President of Axa Strategic Ventures - AXA
François Robinet has spent most of his career within the AXA Group in the areas of risk management, asset management and life insurance. He was the CEO of AXA Rosenberg, a Quantitative Asset Manager and then "Chief Risk Officer" of the AXA Group. Thereafter, he was the “Chief Investment Officer" of AXA NORCEE region and Deputy CEO of AXA Bank Europe in charge of financial activities.
Francois Robinet is, since 2012, the Chief Executive Officer of AXA Life Invest, company specializing in the design, production and distribution of non-traditional life insurance products including life insurance as Unit-linked insurance plans. He is member of the Boards of Directors of various companies of the Axa Group.
François Robinet graduated from the Ecole Nationale de la Statistique et de l’Administration and holds a Masters degree from the University of Stanford, California. He is also an actuary, graduated from the Institut des Actuaires Français and a former student of the Centre des Hautes Etudes d’Assurance.
Managing Partner of APIS Partners
Matteo has a successful track record in private equity and investment banking spanning nearly two decades and focussing specifically on Growth Markets and Financial Services.
Formerly a Senior Partner at The Abraaj Group, the world’s leading EM private equity group, he held various roles there, including co-Head of Abraaj’s PE Investment Team in Dubai ($7bn), Head of both the Special Situations and the Real Estate Group as well as being a member of the Executive and the Investment Committees.
He was responsible for a number of Abraaj’s investee companies (10+), including Network International (payments), Saham Finance (insurance), and Jordan Ahli Bank (banking).
Matteo has been a board director of over 20 companies and completed over 100 transactions in Europe (including CEE), South Asia, the Middle East and Africa, throughout his career at Abraaj, at MIG ($7.4bn AUM) where he was briefly CIO, and at Deutsche Bank as MD and co-Head of Emerging Markets in the Financial Institutions Group. Since 2012, Matteo has been a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Financing and Capital (2012-14 and 2014-16).
Matteo has an MA (Hons) in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from Queens College, the University of Oxford.
Partner - MAJ Invest
Kasper Svarrer joined Maj Invest Equity International in 2009 and has been instrumental in the development of Maj Invests international business area in microfinance and private equity in Vietnam and Africa.
Kasper has 13+ years of experience working with international investments. Kasper has been involved in the development of DMP I, and part of the team, until he took over the responsibility of the Fund in 2013, together with Joaquin Costa. Prior to working for Maj Invest he worked for IFU and The World Bank in Washington DC.
Kasper Svarrer holds an MSc in Forestry and an Executive MBA from Henley Business School, Reading University, UK, and holds a certificate in International Business Management from Georgetown University, USA.
Chief Executive Officer of Axa Creditor - AXA
Head, Emerging Customers, AXA
A graduate of the London School of Economics, the Paris IEP ("Sciences Po.") and INSEAD, she started her career at the European Commission before joining the office of the Chief Economist at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).
In 2000, she went on to work as a strategy consultant in particular for London Economics and then the strategy consulting firm Arthur D. Little. She joined the AXA Group in 2005 as Executive Assistant to the CEO and to the Head of Communications of AXA Investment Managers (AXA IM).
In 2007, she became AXA IM's Head of Brand, Corporate and Research marketing until 2012 when she went on to head the AXA Group's Media Relations and Reputation of the AXA Group team until January 2016.