Our mission

We bring more than just capital. We are company-builders. We invest where we can add substantial value.

We will help grow a portfolio company’s strategy and team. We will help founders raise further funding and develop a long-range exit plan. We have an extensive network in the energy access market which we open up to our companies as they seek customers and partners. Crucially, all our companies can expect significant assistance on-the-ground in Africa. We manage substantial pro-bono assistance programs generously provided by our investors over and above their investment capital. All these programs are available to our portfolio companies. Uniquely, Schneider Electric makes available 1,000 man-days a year of its support to our portfolio companies which can take the form of business development advice, technical assistance, business process training and more.


Dr. Michael H. Gera

Managing Partner & Co-Founder

For Michael, EAV brings together his passion for working with first-class entrepreneurs with his love of technology and Africa. Michael brings EAV’s portfolio companies several years of venture investing along with operating experience – most of it on the ground in Africa. Michael’s career started in academia in the UK and then in software engineering in Germany.
He then moved to Merril Lynch’s Investment Banking Division before moving to Pond Venture Partners – an early-stage Silicon Valley and Europe-based venture firm. He then became interim CEO of two companies in Africa – one in Mozambique, the other in Uganda – before moving to Nairobi to become CEO of Africa Legal Network before returning to venture investing with EAV.
He holds a BSc and PhD in Computer Science from Imperial College in London and an MBA from INSEAD. He speaks English, Italian, French, German, Portuguese, Russian, Maltese and Spanish.

Ravi Sikand

Senior Partner

Having grown up in Kenya, Ravinder brings experience both as an early stage investor with eventures, (Softbank and News Corp JV) and working closely with start-ups, including as a founder. As Director of financial advisory at Deloitte East Africa and more recently with the PPP Unit at the National Treasury in Kenya he has worked on projects relating to the region’s energy development. Ravinder holds a BA from Fordham University, New York and an MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management.

Emmanuel Beau

Investment Manager & Co-Founder

Emmanuel is known by his colleagues as an “Energy Access walking Wikipedia”, and a zealous evangelist for African markets, the environment and social change.
While studying, he set up a social solar business in rural Senegal, carried out business intelligence in Africa, IT leasing in France, and consulted for public/private development projects on Cleantech, Infrastructure and SMEs development. In 2009, Emmanuel joined SIDI, a French impact investment company, to manage microfinance investments in rural Senegal and Togo; he also kickstarted several renewable energy finance projects in African countries. In 2012, Emmanuel joined Schneider Electric’s Energy Access Fund as an Investment Manager. There he developed a proprietary dealflow platform and invested in four start- ups.
Emmanuel holds a Masters degree in Territorial and Urban Strategies from Sciences Po, Paris. He also studied Environmental Science and Policy at UC Davis, California. In 2014, he joined the leadership development program of Schneider Electric, in partnership with UNC Kenan - Flagler Business School, North Carolina.

Paras Patel

Investment Manager

After having studied and worked abroad, Paras decided to come back home (Kenya) and leverage his international experience to help foster the economic and social development of Africa. Paras started his career at PWC in London where he worked as an Associate in the transaction advisory department, specializing in mid-cap tier companies. Thereafter, he joined HSBC PLC in London initially carrying out cross-asset Emerging Market macro research for the bank’s Global Markets arm and more recently worked as a Macro and Investment strategist within their Asset Management business.
Paras holds a BEng (hons) degree in Electronic and Communication Engineering from the Universiry of Warwick, UK and a MSc in Finance from the Warwick Business School, UK.


Schneider Electric

A global specialist in energy management with operations in over 100 countries, Schneider Electric offers integrated solutions across multiple market segments, including leadership positions in Residential & Non-residential Buildings, Manufacturing & Machine Tooling, Utilities & Infrastructures, and Data Centres & Networks.
Focused on making energy safe, reliable, efficient, productive and green, the Group’s 170,000-plus employees achieved sales of 25 billion euros in 2014, through an active commitment to helping individuals and organisations make the most of their energy.



The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union owned by its Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals.



CDC is the UK government-owned development finance institution that uses its own balance sheet to invest in the developing countries of Africa and South Asia.
CDC’s mission is to support the building of businesses in Africa and South Asia, creating jobs and making a lasting difference to people’s lives in some of the world’s poorest places. Under its new strategy, CDC provides debt and direct investment to businesses as well as acting as a fund-of-funds investor. CDC now only makes new investment commitments in Africa and South Asia. It has net assets of £2.8bn.



The French Facility for Global Environment / Fonds Français pour l’Environnement Mondial (FFEM) is a bilateral public fund initiated by the French Government. The FFEM co-finances projects that encourage the protection of the global environment in developing countries. Its co-financing is used for the implementation of pilot projects that combine environmental protection and economic development in the recipient countries.
Its activities focus on the topics of biodiversity, international waters, the climate change, land degradation and desertification, persistent organic pollutants and the stratospheric ozone layer. By the end of 2014, the FFEM has co-financed 275 projects with €317m.



The OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) is the development finance institution established by the Member States of OPEC in 1976 as a collective channel of aid to the developing countries. OFID works in cooperation with developing country partners and the international donor community to stimulate economic growth and alleviate poverty in all disadvantaged regions of the world.
It does this by providing financing to build essential infrastructure that meets basic needs—such as food, energy, clean water and sanitation, healthcare and education—and works to promote productivity, competitiveness and trade. Energy poverty alleviation is a key strategic goal for OFID, and it is working with its partner countries to prioritize universal access to sustainable energy services.



The Investment and Support Fund for Businesses in Africa (FISEA) was set up in 2009. It is held by Agence Française de Développement (AFD) and managed by PROPARCO. This fund makes equity investments in businesses, banks, microfinance institutions and investment funds in Sub-Saharan Africa. FISEA has a five-year investment target of EUR 250m, in addition to private investment funds. It targets the most unstable or post-crisis regions, as well as sectors traditionally bypassed by investors, such as agriculture, microfinance and health care.


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