Our people

Executive Committee & Senior Advisors


Daniel is an investment, public policy and development professional with over 25 years of experience in both the private and public sectors. Daniel is an experienced investor and senior manager who has played an important role in AgDevCo’s development since 2011.  He has strong ties with Africa having been born in Tanzania and having worked across the continent since 2001.  Daniel was the founding director of CEPA (a UK-based finance and economics consultancy) and was Managing Director until 2009. Prior to that, he worked for N M Rothschild in project finance and asset sales; and at the UK Treasury. Daniel has a BA in History and Economics from Oxford University and an MSc in Economics from University College London.  He was a non-executive Director and Chair of the finance and audit committee at Community Housing Group.

Joined AgDevCo: 2011
Managing Director

Chris is one of AgDevCo’s founding directors. He has been working on development finance issues in Africa for the past 15 years, including two extended periods living overseas. Chris’ experience includes working in infrastructure project development at InfraCo Africa, as an economic adviser for the UK’s Department for International Development and as an adviser and speechwriter to the Minister of Finance in the Namibian government. His career started as a corporate finance specialist with Arthur Andersen in London, after completing the prestigious Arthur Andersen scholarship programme. Chris has economics degrees from University College, Oxford (BA Hons) and the London School of Economics (MSc) and holds an advanced qualification in investment appraisal. His responsibilities at AgDevCo include being the senior investment director responsible for East Africa (Rwanda, Uganda, Malawi and Kenya) and West Africa (Ghana, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast and Senegal).  

Other current positions: Chris is a member of AgDevCo’s Board and Executive Committee. He also holds a number of board positions in AgDevCo’s subsidiary and investee companies.

Joined AgDevCo: 2009
Director (Mozambique)

Rui has significant project management and leadership experience with extensive knowledge of supply chain logistics, safety and international best practice business management. Prior to joining AgDevCo, Rui led the planning, development and operations of the Maputo Port in Mozambique. He was also the Director of Security for G4S Secure Solutions, an agricultural business advisor for TechnoServe and a senior consultant with the ICC.

Joined AgDevCo: 2013
Director, Malawi

Jim was instrumental in setting up the Malawi office and is now responsible for managing all current and potential country investments. Jim has over 15 years experience in greenfield projects development and agricultural finance consulting for both commercial and smallholder projects in sub-Saharan and West African countries.  Jim was educated in Zimbabwe and holds a diploma in Agriculture.

Joined AgDevCo: 2012
Melissa Manzo
General Counsel

Melissa heads up AgDevCo’s legal team and has a background in international debt financing. Melissa and her team advise on the structuring and documentation of AgDevCo’s investments, on regulatory, compliance and governance matters applicable to AgDevCo in the UK and in its countries of operation in sub-Saharan Africa, and on the development of AgDevCo’s policies and procedures. Melissa sits on AgDevCo’s Executive Committee, is the Chair of AgDevCo’s Smallholder Development Unit subcommittee, and is the director representative for AgDevCo’s gender programme. Prior to joining AgDevCo, Melissa worked at the international law firm Allen & Overy LLP for 12 years, where she advised on cross-border banking and restructuring transactions. Whilst at Allen & Overy, Melissa founded and managed its microfinance and social investment group and worked on a number of pro bono matters. She has also spent time on secondment to the emerging markets desk at Citigroup. Melissa has a BA in Oriental Studies from Oxford University and a postgraduate diploma in law from BPP Law School.

Joined AgDevCo: 2016
Commercial Agriculture Director

Erik is the Senior Commercial Agriculture Director, responsible for commercial and agronomic advice and analysis of agribusiness opportunities across all current and potential investments. Before joining AgDevCo, Erik was CEO at a farming operation in Ghana, where he implemented mechanised agriculture and managed outgrowers farming operations. Previously he worked for a plant science company, with agronomy teams across India, Indonesia, and Southern Africa. He has also extensive experience of farm supply chain management with (export) horticulture. He started his career working in plantation management in West Africa. Erik has a BSc (honours) in Tropical and Sub-Tropical Agriculture from International Agricultural College Larenstein, the Netherlands.

Joined AgDevCo: 2012
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