Actis, the pan-emerging markets private equity firm, has appointed James Smith as director in the firm’s value creation group.
Smith will be based in the Johannesburg office and takes up his post with immediate effect.
Smith will work with Actis portfolio companies in Africa, seeking to add value by driving strategic and operational improvements. Smith has previous experience of working with Actis in his role as chief executive and co-founder of consulting firm Burlington Strategy Advisors.
Smith began his career at Palabora Mining Company before moving to Bain & Company in 1998.
The value creation group supports the Actis deal teams by identifying areas of potential improvement in prospective investments – for example, sales growth, margin improvement, and making and integrating acquisitions. Once the investment is made, the value creation specialists work alongside management to achieve improvements, so that the value of each business is maximised.
John van Wyk, head of Africa at Actis, says: “Actis is committed to partnering with portfolio company management teams to build value into African companies. James’s long experience in the industrials and consumer sectors and his existing relationships at Actis will help us do this in an ever more focused and effective way. We are delighted to welcome James onboard.”