Chief Financial Officer
We are seeking a CFO with 15 years of Investment Banking / Private Equity experience to lead our funding strategy, capital raising and portfolio oversight.
Verdant Frontiers’ mission is to end poverty by creating large-scale for-profit businesses in Africa. Our first milestone/goal is to create 1 million jobs and generate 1 billion dollars in annual revenue by 2025. We aim to generate strong profits for investors with purposeful impact on the communities where we work. Our founders give 50% of their profits towards catalyzing positive transformation among the people and markets where we do business.
Our business model is unique in that we are a firm that conceives, develops and launches startup companies that meet our project criteria. We’ve established 5 companies in Ethiopia with more than $50M of invested capital to date and we plan to raise an additional $100M to start or acquire 2-3 new companies annually. We’ve built from nothing the largest beef exporter in Northern Africa, the largest corn producer in Ethiopia and the largest diplomatic market focused real estate developer in Africa. We have a strong team of founders and entrepreneurs who are looking to further expand our performance, scale and impact.
Position: Chief Financial Officer
Verdant Frontiers is looking for a seasoned Chief Financial Officer (CFO) with a unique blend of financial acumen and a strong desire to achieve social impact. The CFO will primarily be responsible for three areas: fund structure, raising capital and portfolio management. The CFO will have direct oversight of Verdant Frontiers’ investment portfolio, including development of businesses and investment approach, investment analysis and quality control. The ideal candidate will have 15+ years of transactional experience in private equity or venture capital as a direct investor in sustainable and scalable businesses with some experience in emerging or frontier markets and a track record of successful exits. A primary component of this position will be to raise capital and the CFO will have demonstrated success in raising debt and equity capital and possess a deep understanding of capital markets, with specific knowledge of the market and sources of impact investment capital. The CFO will lead and manage the fundraising process including the addition of outside fund-raisers. Successful candidates will have an entrepreneurial spirit and thrive on the opportunity to help shape an organization, as well as a deep-seated desire to make a positive impact in the world.
Develop funding structure & raise capital to support the company mission
- Develop capital raising strategy and funding structure with company executives to achieve the company’s mission. Target raise is $100 million over the next 24 months.
- Identify prospective investors especially private equity, venture capital, development finance institutions and other institutional investors for debt, mezzanine and equity funding
- Lead the development of marketing and investment prospectus with our executives and legal counsel
- Maintain focus on both our strong financial return potential and the social impact of the businesses
- Raise funds and execute on Verdant’s next stage of capital markets/investment fund offerings
- Responsible for investor updates, investor reporting and investment compliance requirements
Develop our portfolio of companies
- Review, edit and finalize the business plans / financial model for new businesses which will be drafted by our business development team.
- Co-ordinate and lead Investment Committee meetings to review and structure prospective investments, to report on investment progress and to discuss portfolio strategy
- As a member of the executive team, participate in the review, discussion and selection of new businesses launches.
- Provide standards and metrics for new business plans to be developed.
- Build and lead a team that completes due diligence, deal structuring and post-investment management. We typically take controlling positions with a minimum of a 50% equity stake.
- Develop and deliver, with the Continent Director and the Business Development Manager, a coherent set of post-investment management resources including local advisors, technical specialists, governance resources and peer to peer networks, that will help companies execute on their business models and grow
- Oversee the financial performance of each portfolio company. This includes five companies / projects that we currently own and will grow as we launch new companies.
- Ensure that investment and portfolio performance is routinely assessed and that reports are prepared on a timely basis for both internal use and for investor reporting
Contribute to overall company leadership & strategy
- Work closely with the Office of the CEO and the Africa Continent Director to manage the portfolio to find, structure, develop, support and monitor portfolio investments
- Ensure that the portfolio investment process is specific, efficient and followed
- Company performance monitoring and management
- 15+ years of experience in international investment banking, private equity or venture capital
- Strong cross-cultural awareness, understanding and experience
- Commitment to generating BOTH strong socio-economic impact AND financial returns
- Long-term travel requirement is expected to be 25%
- Preference to live / work in Austin, TX; some flexibility for the right candidate
- Preference for MBA or comparable post-graduate education and training
- Emerging markets experience a plus
Candidates for the CFO role should embody Verdant’s core values:
- Mutual respect - We fundamentally believe that all people deserve dignity and respect. We believe respect is given and not earned; it is not a product of position or performance, it is a product of personhood.
- Mutual accountability - We are accountable to each other recognizing its a two-way relationship and we ask for help quickly when needed
- Integrity - Honesty, humility and strong moral principles are core to our culture. We strive to be people, both professionally and personally, who uphold these values at all times.
- Collaboration - We believe collaborative team deliver the best performance. We encourage robust discussion and debate, then once we’ve decided we collectively work towards the same vision.