Africa50, the infrastructure investment platform backed by African Development Bank and more that twenty African countries, has appointed a new investor relations head. Rupali Gupta, who was most recently the Director of the investment management group at IDFC Alternatives, will spearhead Africa50’s fundraising initiatives as well as lead the development of the group’s investor relations function with both public and private investors and its other shareholders around the world.
“Rupali is an important addition to our multi-disciplinary team at Africa50,” Alain Ebobissé, Africa50’s CEO said in welcoming her appointment. “Her extensive fund raising and investor relations experience in an emerging market context will help us deepen our relationships with existing investors and shareholders, and allow us to build new partnerships and mobilize long-term savings from within and outside the continent to help close the infrastructure funding gap in Africa.”
In a career stretching back 19 years, Gupta has raised over $2 billion for four emerging market funds and has broad experience in the realms of private banking, corporate treasury operations, investor relations, and fund raising. Prior to her role at IDFC Alternatives, an Indian alternative asset management business, she held positions with True North, (the former India Value Fund Advisors), Morgan Stanley India, and Kotak Securities in Mumbai where she began her career.
“This is a great opportunity for me to deepen relations with investors seeking exposure to African infrastructure and raise funds for another important emerging market fund,” Gupta said. “Improving infrastructure is one of the key requirements for accelerating economic and social development in Africa, and I am excited about contributing to this.”
Africa50 is looking to attract $3 billion in initial equity capital to help build credibility with the three broad groups of investors – African sovereign nations, institutional investors such as pension funds and sovereign wealth funds as well as its major sponsor, the African Development Bank and other development finance institutions – before scaling the fund to $10 billion. The African Development Bank estimates that the fund will need $10 billion in equity before it can attract the total of $100 billion from local and global it seeks. In August 2015, the fund announced its first close, garnering $830 million in commitments.