London, UK: LeapFrog Investments, the profit with purpose investment firm, has expanded its Climate Investment Strategy Team with several new hires, as it seeks to support green growth opportunities for low-income consumers and producers across emerging markets.
Saurabh Bajaj joins LeapFrog as Director of Investments – South East Asia, Climate, alongside Katherine Owens as Associate Director of Impact Measurement and Management, Climate, Nimish Desai as Associate Director, Climate and Akshi Sharma as Investment Analyst, Climate. They join LeapFrog’s newly appointed Partner, Nakul Zaveri, to accelerate LeapFrog’s Climate Investment Strategy.
The Strategy marks a natural extension of LeapFrog’s mission to deliver essential services and products that enable lower-income consumers across Asia and Africa to build better lives. It focuses on companies providing green products and services that are already cost competitive in many emerging markets and enjoy enabling regulatory tailwinds. This large and expanding investible universe includes sectors such as renewable energy, sustainable food, electric mobility and climate-smart housing and appliances.
Saurabh Bajaj will lead LeapFrog’s Climate Investment Strategy in South East Asia, as well as play an expert role globally on food-related investments. He brings over 10 years of experience in food systems and agriculture, having joined from Proterra Investment Partners Asia, one of the world’s largest food and agriculture focused private equity firms, where he led deal origination in India and South East Asia.
Katherine Owens will be responsible for developing the firm’s climate impact focus and measuring LeapFrog’s contribution to climate action and adaptation. She brings over 10 years of experience in ESG and sustainability, having previously worked with Ernst & Young’s Climate Change and Sustainability Services team in London and as Head of Impact and ESG at M-KOPA, a leading PAYG finance player in Africa.
Nimish Desai has over 15 years of experience in sustainable investing and investment banking across alternative asset classes, including at Relativity Investment Management and mid-market firm Kitara Capital. He will be responsible for originating, executing, and managing climate investments and portfolios across a range of sectors.
Akshi Sharma brings experience in deal evaluation, execution, and portfolio management, having previously worked with Relativity Investment Management and HSBC investment banking. She has worked across sectors including transport & mobility, climate tech, consumer & retail, health tech, and prop tech.
Saurabh Bajaj will be based in Singapore and Katherine Owens will be based in London, while Nimish Desai and Akshi Sharma will be based in Mumbai.
Nakul Zaveri, Partner and Co-Head of the Climate Investment Strategy at LeapFrog Investments said: “Through our Climate Investment Strategy, we are seeking to support emerging consumers and producers across Africa and Asia to access low-carbon and climate resilient pathways as they rise into prosperity, and so avoid the unsustainable carbon footprint of the developed world, a critical objective in global ambitions towards achieving NetZero.
“We are thrilled to welcome Saurabh, Katherine, Nimish, and Akshi to our growing team. Their diverse backgrounds and expertise across climate, impact investing, and financial services will be instrumental to the objectives of the Climate Investment Strategy.”