CDC hires new chief investment officer and head of Africa

9th March 2018

CDC Group, the UK’s development finance institution, has made two new additions to its staff.

Tenbite Ermias will serve as the new head of Africa, while Chris Coles has been appointed as the institution’s new chief investment officer (CIO). Ermias, an Ethiopian national, joined CDC in late February to lead CDC’s business in Africa, in which CDC currently invests long-term capital in more than 650 African firms. His entrance to the role follows his work at McKinsey, where he was a  partner for three years. Before this, Ermias had worked at the Boston Consulting Group for more than 13 years.

Nick O’Donohoe, CDC’s CEO, said the institution’s plan to “invest more than ever in its history” would benefit from the pair´s expertise. He said Cole’s role as CIO would prove instrumental in identifying “the right type of capital to those businesses that make the most impact”, while Tenbite he said would “help CDC expand the reach of our capital in Africa and strengthen our relationships with our investee companies”.

Cole will evaluate CDC’s investment strategy against the performance of its portfolio, which covers mainly Africa and South Asia. He will chair CDC’s investment committees and along with Ermias, will have a seat on the executive committee.

Cole’s investment experience of 25 years stems from his work at Actis, where he was also chair of the executive committee, chief operating officer and director of the board.

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