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Sébastien Duquet joins SunFunder to lead new Gigaton climate fund

Updated: Dec 2, 2021

We are delighted to announce that Sébastien Duquet has taken up a new role as SunFunder’s Chief Commercial Officer.

He will lead our new “Gigaton Empowerment Fund”, a $500 million blended finance vehicle to scale up clean energy and climate investments in emerging markets, with a target first close in 2022.

Sébastien brings over 20 years experience in impact fund management, most recently as Chief Investment Officer at Symbiotics. His senior management experience also includes 8 years with responsAbility, where he helped launch the Global Climate Partnership Fund, and as CEO of microfinance groups Oxus and PlaNet Finance.

"I am thrilled to join the leading impact investor in distributed clean energy and to be helping SunFunder develop the new funds that will enable our partners in Africa – and also Southeast Asia and Latin America – to finance their growth this decade and together cut emissions and empower communities. Since I first saw solar home systems on the ground in Morocco in 2003, I have been convinced that solar energy will enable hundreds of millions of people in frontier markets to get access to clean energy in an affordable way."

Sébastien Duquet, SunFunder's Chief Commercial Officer

The Gigaton fund will build on SunFunder’s leading track record in distributed solar investments in emerging markets to expand our reach into new geographies and sectors, and will be our fourth blended finance vehicle, designed to unlock public and private institutional capital at scale.

"Sébastien is an exceptional fund manager who joins us at the perfect time for SunFunder’s next chapter. We are expanding our business to meet the challenges of the decade ahead: implementing a clean energy transition through the reallocation of institutional capital into new investments in climate mitigation and adaptation projects in underserved markets, while helping to lift millions out of energy poverty."

Ryan Levinson, SunFunder's Co-founder & CEO

SunFunder has welcomed several exceptional new colleagues this summer to expand our team:

  • Charles Wetherill, Head of Origination in Nairobi, who previously worked with the Nordic Development Fund and the AfDB;

  • Chris Garner, Associate General Counsel in London, whose experience includes Slaughter & May and DLA Piper, as well as development finance institutions including CDC, EBRD and FMO;

  • Marga Manzo, Senior Investment Officer in Phnom Penh, previously with the Energy Development Corporation and PowerGen, who launches SunFunder’s presence in Southeast Asia;

  • Maria Caterina Migliorero, ESG & Impact Manager in Nairobi, with 5 years experience working as an ESG Manager at PwC France;

  • Meeri Moilanen, Investor Relations Manager in London, who brings 7 years experience in investor relations with mainstream asset managers;

  • Nicole Kugelmass, Investment Officer in London, who spent 12 years in the banking sector with Merrill Lynch and Lloyds in London and New York, and recently worked with Biolite in Nairobi;

  • Brenda Anzetse, Portfolio Officer in Nairobi, previously an analyst with Open Capital Advisors;

  • Rosemary Kanyoro, Portfolio Officer in Nairobi, who previously worked with the Capital Markets Authority in Kenya;

  • Théo Pénot, Investment Analyst in Nairobi, who has worked at ING Bank and with French renewable energy developer Akuo Energy.

With our dedicated team in place we are focused on pioneering and scaling our clean energy and climate investments in emerging markets into the billions this decade, as we expand around the world and into new innovative sectors.

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