Mr. Kessler has over 20 years of experience on Wall Street, starting his career in Investment Banking at Morgan Stanley, and subsequently Investment Research at Goldman Sachs. He founded African Discovery Group in 2017. Mr. Kessler serves as a board member of Port Energy, a Senegal-based Oil & Gas exploration company, First American Minerals, a mineral resource principal vehicle, and Ogelle, a Nigerian based social media company. Mr. Kessler is the Founder of African Discovery Foundation, a philanthropic organization focused on charitable contributions for education and health care resources in Africa. Mr. Kessler holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania (Cum Laude) and an MBA from Columbia Business School.
Mr. Green has decades of experience on the buyside, on both private equity and hedge fund platforms, where he has focused on both debt and equity, performing and non-performing investments across multiple industries. Previously, he served as a senior member of Houlihan Lokey’s Illiquid Financial Assets practice, where he focused on providing strategic advice for Fund M&A, non-core asset disposition and strategic fund raising. Prior to that Mr. Green worked on various hedge fund and private equity platforms including Plainfield Asset Management (a $5.5 bln hedge fund platform), ArcherPoint Capital Management (a partnership based private equity platform he co-founded), Doughty Hanson & Co. (a multi billion international private equity sponsor). He previously served on the boards of Skylink Aviation Limited, a privately held air logistics business; MTI Holdings, Inc., a high mix, low volume contract manufacturer; North American Membership Group, the world’s largest lifestyle affinity membership organization; Dunlop Standard Aerospace Group, an integrated supplier of aftermarket parts and services to the aerospace and defense industry; PQS Acquisition Corp, North American business of FL Group, the largest independent blender and distributor of automotive lubricants; Knowles Electronics Holdings, Inc., a leading international manufacturer of technologically advanced products in micro-acoustics; and Tumi Inc., a leading, high-end luggage and business accessory brand amongst others. Prior to moving to private equity Mr. Green worked in investment banking at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette Securities Corporation. Mr Green started his career as an auditor at PriceWaterhouseCoopers. Mr. Green holds a Bachelor of Commerce and a postgraduate honors degree in Financial Accounting from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, and an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Ms. Gordon is a business development and government relations executive with 22 years of broad business experience in sub-Saharan Africa, working with heads of state, ministers, and investors to establish deals in 25+ countries. Ms. Gordon has high-level networks in place in Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Cote D’Ivoire, Mali, and Sierra Leone. Ms. Gordon regularly cultivates strategic relations with African governments and business leaders, most recently at the U.S. Africa Leaders’ Summit in New York. She is also a participant of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Annual Meeting. Accomplishments include cultivating strategic relations with H.E. President of the Republic of Tanzania Jakaya Kikwete and appropriate Government Ministers to launch a water purification equipment and technology deal, launching a perimeter security deal in the Gulf of Guinea, working with the Chairman of the Ghana Lands Commission to orchestrate the acquisition of BSY Hostels Ghana to the international student housing group Common Interest Communities. A veteran Africa analyst, Maxine is a Member of the Executive Board of Directors at the Sustainable Initiatives and Alliances for Africa (SIA-Africa) an NGO. Maxine has a BA in International Marketing from NYU as well and attended the American University in Paris.
Mr. Adan has held numerous roles in the start-up, technology and development world in both Europe and Africa. These include: Business Development Executive at OSS Technology, VP Business Development for Africa at WindStream Technologies, an affordable and scalable renewable energy technology for a global marketplace. Mr. Adan also holds position of Head of Somaliland International Recognition & Trade for Africa, the goal of which is to promote Somaliland business development and alliances in African countries, provide information to business clients and partners related to business and expansion opportunities available around the world for Somaliland. Securing capital, facilities and physical resources and implementing business strategies for the Somaliland Government, work with foreign investment firms, banks, governments and consulting firms in support of the Somaliland Government, work with foreign governments trade offices to maximize business investment opportunities to Somaliland for business clients as well as trade partners and the Somaliland Government. Mr. Adan has also held roles as International Business Development Executive at Business Technology Group (BTG) and Strategic Account Manager at CCS Media. Mr. Adan holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Westminster.
Dr. Barfuor Adjei-Barwuah is Ghana’s Ambassador to the United States of America
From 2001 to 2007, he served as Ghana's ambassador to Japan with concurrent accreditation to Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, and Singapore. In 2017 he was appointed Ghana's ambassador to the United States of America by the current President of the republic of Ghana; Nana Akufo-Addo. He received his BA from the University of Ghana, his masters at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee graduating in 1968 and his PHD in Geography at the Indiana University.
Ambassador Modest Jonathan Mero is the outgoing Ambassador of the United Republic of Tanzania to the United Nations.
Until his appointment on 3 December 2016, Mr. Mero was his country’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, World Trade Organization and all international organizations in Geneva. Holding that position until May 2013, he was accredited simultaneously to the International Atomic Energy Agency, United Nations Industrial Organization, Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization and the United Nations system in Austria. Between 2007 and 2013 Mr. Mero was stationed at his country’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York, where he served as Minster Plenipotentiary, Economic Adviser and Head of Chancery. From 2005 to 2006, he served as Head of Policy in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. Previously, Mr. Mero was a senior economist at the Ministry of Industry and Trade, from 1987 to 2004, and a trade policy adviser to the Executive Secretary of the Southern African Development Community from 2004 to 2005. Mr. Mero holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Dar es Salaam in the United Republic of Tanzania, as well as a master’s degree in finance from the University of Strathclyde in the United Kingdom.
Franklin Olakunle Amoo, Managing Partner of Baylis Emerging Markets
Prior to co-founding Baylis, Franklin helped lead the Strategic Credit Group at Mizuho Securities USA, the securities brokerage arm of the $1.8 trillion Mizuho Financial Group, overseeing the firm’s activities with regards to originating, structuring and trading illiquid and real assets. At Mizuho, Franklin reported to the CEO and helped establish the CLO, High Yield sales and trading, secondary loan trading, structured finance and asset finance businesses. Prior to Mizuho, Franklin worked at Deutsche Bank, Bank of America and Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette. He began his career as an analyst in the Media & Telecom Investment Banking Group at Bank of America. A co-founder of the Africa Pandemic Response Alliance, Franklin serves on the business advisory board of the Ooni of Ife, the traditional ruler of the Yoruba people of West Africa, chairs the Loan Market Association's Task Force on African Secondary Loan Trading and serves on the Prep for Prep Associates Council. A Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst, Franklin holds a BA in Economics from Columbia University and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania where he was a Howard E. Mitchell and a Venture Incubation Program Fellow. He is an avid farmer and the proprietor of a working farm in Ogun State, Nigeria.
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Last Updated November 15, 2020