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Investment Professionals

MEET OUR INVESTMENT PROFESSIONALS

Luc Albinski

Executive Chairman

MBA (INSEAD)

Luc is the co-founder and Executive Chairman of Vantage’s mezzanine funds, with responsibilities spanning mezzanine investments’ assessment, structuring, execution and post-transaction monitoring. Luc is one of two executive members of the Mezzanine Funds’ Investment Committees, and has played a leading role in all the investments executed by the four mezzanine funds since 2007. Luc has 26 years of experience in private equity, mezzanine finance.

WARREN VAN DER MERWE

Managing Partner

CA(SA), B.Com (Hons), M.Com (Wits)

Warren is the Managing Partner of Vantage’s mezzanine funds. He joined Vantage in 2007, originally as Chief Financial Officer, where he ran the finance and reporting function of the group, but was also active in operational activities such deal assessment, the execution of several transactions, monitoring of certain investments and fundraising. Warren has 26 years of experience in corporate banking & mezzanine finance.

ALASTAIR CAMPBELL

Managing Director – Vantage GreenX

CA(SA), B.Com, Hons B Compt

Alastair joined Vantage in January 2014 and is a Director of Vantage GreenX, and member of its Investment Committee. His primary responsibilities include the assessment, structuring, execution and post-transaction monitoring of senior debt advanced to projects in the sustainable energy space. He has overseen the 14 solar and wind investments that the two GreenX funds have executed to date.
Alastair has 20+ years of experience in Project Finance.

SIYANDA KHUMALO

Chief Financial Officer – Vantage Capital Group

CA(SA)

Siya joined Vantage in 2011 as a Financial Controller, assisting the then Chief Financial Officer, Warren van der Merwe, with the overall finance function. After three years in this role he joined the partners of Kleoss Capital as a Chief Financial Officer, responsible for the set-up of the Kleoss Fund I.
Siyanda has 4 years in private equity.

Johnny F. Jones

Partner

CFA, CPA, MBA (Wharton)

Johnny F. Jones joined Vantage in 2009 and is a Partner with a primary focus on the Mezzanine Fund’s activities. In addition to South Africa, Johnny is responsible for the Nigerian and Ghanaian markets. He oversees the Servest, Landmark, Maryland Mall and Bay Realty investments. Johnny has 21 years ofexperience in Investing and Credit.

 

David Kornik

Partner

CA(SA), CFA, M.Com (UCT)

David joined Vantage in 2010 and is a Partner focused on the mezzanine funds. He covers South Africa, Egypt, Namibia and Botswana and oversees the fund’s investments in PickAlbatros Hotels, Sky Realty, United Africa Group, Dynamic Bedding and AfriSam. David has 20 years of experience in private equity, mezzanine and specialised finance.

Driss Benabdeslam

Partner

MSc in Risk & Investment Mgmt (EDHEC)

 Driss joined Vantage in 2017 and is a Partner responsible for originating and assessing transactions in Maghreb and West African francophone markets. He oversees the Fund’s investment in Petro Ivoire, Equity Invest and CIM Santé. Before joining Vantage, he worked at InfraMed Management, an infrastructure fund based in Paris. Before that, he worked for Amethis Finance in their Paris office. Driss has 11 years of experience in private equity & Project Finance.

Pavel Lekov

Chief Financial Officer – Vantage Best in Class
ACA (ICAEW), BSc (Hons)
Pavel has worked for Deloitte, both in Bulgaria and in the UK, for over 7 years, spending his time predominantly within the Audit & Assurance and Transaction Services departments. He graduated with a degree in Accounting and Finance (BSc) from the Warwick Business School and in his time in Deloitte, Pavel became a member of the ICAEW Chartered Accountants (ACA).

 

Roshal Ramdenee

Associate Partner

CFA, MBA (Duke), B.Bus.Sc (UCT)

Roshal joined Vantage in 2020. He is an Associate Partner in the Mezzanine division, covering South Africa and East Africa. Roshal has 10 years of experience in banking, mezzanine and structured equity. 

 

Derek Alexander

Associate Partner: Legal

B.Com (Law) LLB

Derek joined Vantage in 2019 and is Vantage’s Associate Partner: Legal, assisting the investment team with the assessment, structuring, execution, post-transaction monitoring and exiting of investments, as well as holding responsibility for company secretarial and compliance matters. Derek has 10 years of experience in practising corporate and commercial Law.

Darshan Shah

Associate Partner
BSc in Mathematics & Economics

Darshan joined Vantage in 2019. He is an Associate Partner
in the mezzanine division, covering South Africa and East Africa
investment activities. Darshan has 8 years of experience in
corporate finance, venture capital and mezzanine. Darshan has 11 years of experience in VC, private equity and corporate finance.

 

Omar Gharbawi

Associate Partner

BBA (Finance), BA (Economics)

Passed all CFA exams. Before joining Vantage, Omar spent three years as an Equity Research Analyst with EFG Hermes – one of the leading investment banks in Africa. In this role, he analysed publicly listed companies in the MENA region, while advising asset-managers and hedge-fund managers on
various investment opportunities. Omar has 8 years of experience in Equity Research & Investment Banking.

Tobi Kasali

Senior Associate
CFA, MSc (Corporate Finance), BSc
(Mathematics & Accounting)
Prior to joining Vantage, Tobi spent four years as an Investment Banker in the advisory business of Chapel Hill Denham, a leading Nigerian Investment Bank, where he advised large Nigerian corporates and international investors across M&A and capital markets. In doing so, he covered several industry sectors, including FMCG, real estate, industrials and financial services. Tobi has 9 years of experience in Investment Banking.

Yasthira Ramdenee

Senior Associate
B.Bus.Sc, MBA (IE Madrid)
Yasthira joined Vantage in 2019 as an Associate, and assists with originating and assessing transactions in the West African and South African markets. Yasthira previously worked at Fieldstone Africa, Eaglestone Capital Advisory and Macquarie Capital where she advised on renewable energy and infrastructure related transactions. Yasthira has 10 years of experience in Project Finance
and Advisory

 

Chérine Matar

Senior Associate
MSc in IPE & Finance, BSc in Management (LSE & Dauphine)
Prior to joining Vantage, she spent five years in Investment Banking, in the Sovereign Advisory division of Rothschild & Co, where her job entailed advising sovereign and corporate clients across EMEA and LATAM on strategic financial issues. Cherine began her career in a private debt fund based in London. Chérine has 7 years of experience in Investment Banking & Private Equity.

Abigail Brews

Senior Associate

B.Bus.Sci (Finance)
Before joining Vantage, Abigail spent two years working in the Goldman Sachs Sub-Saharan Africa Investment Banking team, where she worked closely with clients across Africa covering both M&A and capital market transactions. Prior to Goldman, Abigail worked as an investment banking intern at Citi Group in Johannesburg and London. Abigail has 7 years of experience in investment banking and private equity.

Abdoulaye Fall

Associate

Msc (Economics & Mgmt), ESSEC

Abdoulaye joined Vantage in 2021 as a Senior Analyst, and assists with assessing and executing transactions in West African and Maghreb francophone markets. Abdoulaye began his career at Amethis, a Pan-African private equity firm investing in equity and debt across various sectors. Prior to that, he interned at Oakam, a micro-lending institution based in London, and at BeMyEye, a French tech-enabled retail intelligence company. Abdoulaye has 5 years of experience in
private equity & finance.

Samantha Owen

Associate: Legal B.Com (Economics & Law), LLB Samantha joined Vantage in 2022 as an Associate in the legal team, assisting the investment team with the assessment, structuring, execution, post-transaction monitoring and exiting of investments. Prior to joining Vantage, Samantha spent four years with Webber Wentzel (in alliance with Linklaters), a pre-eminent South African law firm. Samantha has 6 years of experience practising corporate and commercial law.  

Sarah Watson

ESG Officer

B.Soc.Sci Honours (Geography & Enviro Mgmt)

Prior to joining Vantage, Sarah was a Senior Social Consultant at EBS Advisory, a leading African ESG Advisory firm. Sarah specialised in E&S due diligence assessments, E&S management systems, as well as Impact and ESG reporting. Prior to this Sarah had worked for over 10 years as an Environmental and Social Consultant specialising in ESIAs, E&S risk management, E&S Compliance Auditing, and Public Participation and Stakeholder Engagement. Sarah has 14 years of experience in ESG consulting.

Dishen Naidoo

Compliance Officer & Company Secretary

LLB

Dishen joined Vantage in 2021 as Compliance Officer and Company Secretary. He has worked as a consultant and legal advisor specialising in fund compliance and corporate governance in the financial services industry. After completing a stint at Legal Aid South Africa, Dishen joined Alexander Forbes in 2013 as a consultant specialising in insurance and retirement fund law. Dishen has 12 years of experience in financial services legal & compliance.