Chris Grune presently divides his time between his hometown of Chicago in the USA and his adopted base of Nairobi, Kenya. He is an experienced finance professional, with over twenty-five years of experience in global securities and derivatives markets and ten years dealing with private transactions, investment banking and fundraising. He is a practitioner in such areas as company/project valuation and risk management. He has performed due diligence and advised on numerous energy projects, both for renewable energy and thermal sources across Africa.
He worked as a senior consultant at the IFC/World Bank Group’s Nairobi office from 2015 to 2017, where he helped manage a donor-funded project to improve the investment climate and increase inward foreign direct investment into Kenya. He advised the GoK, several ministries and parastatals during that time.
He acted as Kenya representative for ACM, a US-based consultancy that developed and packaged projects in energy, infrastructure and affordable housing to present to global institutional investors.
Chris has always had a strong personal interest in the energy sector. He toured the geothermal powerplant on the Japanese island of Hachijoujima in 2010 and has been fascinated by the technology behind this form of renewable energy. As a hobby, he built test projects using bicycle-powered dynamos and rechargeable batteries, as well as small-scale solar systems.
Some of the investment banking mandates he has worked on in Africa have included valuations, fundraises and fairness opinions for such projects as a solar IPP in Kenya, a wind IPP in Kenya, an emergency diesel power facility for Tanzania, a solar IPP in Malawi, a solar IPP in Uganda and a geothermal exploration project in Kenya.
Chris, as a senior portfolio manager at State Street Global Advisors (SSgA) in the US was personally responsible for approximately US$ 1 billion in assets across global equity markets and spanning all sectors. He drove SSgA’s his team’s first investment into Sub-Saharan Africa and evaluated and invested in nearly every type of energy and natural resource firm from over 30 emerging and frontier market countries.
He has been a speaker at investment conferences in New York, Boston, London, Dar Es Salaam and Nairobi. He has sat on the board of directors at the CFA Institute Kenya chapter and served as the president of the Columbia Alumni Association of Kenya.
He obtained his MBA from Columbia Business School in New York, is a CFA Charterholder, has completed Fitch Learning/Paul Wilmott’s Certificate in Quantitative Finance (CQF) course, has the Professional Risk Manager (PRM) designation and is certified as an SIIA Financial Information Associate (FIA).
Among his current assignments, he is engaged as an Author, Technical Reviewer and Senior Editor for a leading global financial education institution in the UK, creating examination preparation material for a variety of topics including Financial Derivatives, Capital Markets, Investment Fund Governance, Big Data, Data Analytics, Digital Banking/Mobile Money and IT Resource Management.