Board of Directors

 

Chairman                     

William Knight

Managing Director         

Aung Htun

Finance Director            

Michael Dean

Non-executive Director   

Craig Martin

Non-executive Director   

Christopher Appleton

 

 

 

William Knight, 69

Independent Non-executive Chairman

Audit Committee

Nomination and Corporate Governance Committee

Remuneration Committee (Chairman)

 

Mr. Knight is an alternative asset investment specialist who has spent almost his entire career involved with financial development of companies and projects in developing economies.

 

Mr. Knight has been involved with Asia since 1971. Between 1979 and 1982 he was head of the Far East merchant banking activities of Lloyds Bank Group based in Hong Kong where he closed numerous capital raising transactions for governments and emerging growth companies throughout Asia, being notably active in India, Indonesia, Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan and Thailand. Between 1987 and 1991, whilst still at Lloyds Bank Group, Mr. Knight specialised in arranging emerging market investment funds and established a number of the earliest country funds, including the first London-listed fund for Thailand and the first fund for Vietnam.

 

Since 1991 he has served in a wide range of non-executive positions as an independent director or adviser based in London. Through his wholly-owned independent advisory company, Mr. Knight's principal activities have been the development of financial services for economies in transition or rapid development, first time investment funds, financing small and medium enterprises and private equity for regenerating economies. He has placed particular emphasis on the Indian sub-continent and young asset management groups looking for assistance on strategic direction, organisation, remuneration issues and relations with investors, which has often required taking a board position.

 

Mr. Knight is also co-founder of Emerisque Capital Limited, a specialist private equity sponsor founded in 2004 that operates from the UK, USA and Hong Kong for the acquisition of or investment in medium-sized, established Western consumer brands and vertical retailers with critical mass in their core markets and potential for rapid scale in the newer world economies and distribution channels. He is chairman of Abingworth Bio Ventures II, and the JP Morgan Chinese Investment Trust Plc and China Chaintek Limited. He is also a director of Fidelity Asian Values Plc, Ceylon Guardian Investment Trust Plc, Axis Fiduciary Ltd and Smith-Tan Phoenix Asia Fund Limited. Mr Knight sat on the advisory board of Campbell Lutyens for 18 months up to March 2013 and prior to this he acted as a senior adviser for the company. Mr. Knight is also a Senior Advisor for Homestrings Ltd.

 

Aung Htun, 53

Managing Director

Investment Committee  (Chairman)

Nomination and Corporate Governance Committee

 

Mr. Htun is half Burmese and an engineering graduate from Imperial College. He brings hands-on experience of starting, building and managing companies, as well as over 30 years of fund raising and corporate finance experience. With a decade in private equity Mr. Htun is also seasoned in making and exiting investments.

 

In 1982 Mr. Htun joined Kleinwort Benson in London in the corporate finance department specialising in mergers and acquisitions. On returning to Thailand in 1987 he founded and was chief executive officer of Seamico Securities Plc, a diversified corporate finance, fund management and stock broking company which he built up from scratch through organic growth and acquisitions and took public on the Stock Exchange of Thailand in 1995. Seamico diversified out of Thailand through acquisitions of securities firms in Hong Kong, London and Mumbai.

 

In 1999 Mr. Htun founded Thai Strategic Capital, a Bangkok based private equity fund manager where he led investments into B-Quik and Modern Asia Environmental Holdings, and is currently managing Thai Strategic Partners II LP. andTSWutti Ltd. (a special purpose vehicle that has co-invested with CVCI in Thailand’s largest skincare clinic chain). During this time Thai Strategic Capital formed a private equity joint venture with Prudential plc.

 

Mr. Htun brings a wealth of experience and contacts in a diverse range of industries (finance, canned tuna, waste management, hotels, car services, cinema chains, etc) where he has been a director and / or audit committee member. He sits on the boards of Draco PCB Plc, Wuttisak Clinic Inter Group Ltd, KTZMICO Securities Ltd., Nam Seng Insurance Plc., and is a Governor of the Asian University and a director of the Thai Private Equity & Venture Capital Association which he co-founded in 1989.

 

Michael Dean, 52

Finance Director

Investment Committee

 

Mr. Dean has over 20 years of experience in the financial industry in investment banking, private equity and accounting and a further eight years as chief financial officer for a global shipping group. Twenty-two of these years have been spent in Hong Kong and Singapore.

 

Mr. Dean was a management shareholder of Credit Lyonnais Securities Asia (“CLSA”) and during the 1990s was Head of Corporate Finance and then Co-Head of Private Equity at CLSA. During this time he spearheaded the group’s expansion into investment banking in Indonesia, China, India, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Pakistan. He also co-led CLSA’s diversification into private equity and the successful ARIA private equity programme.

 

In 2000 he joined Prudential plc as part of their Asian based, management buyout focused team at PPMV Asia developing investments in Southeast Asia as well as starting their fund of funds business. In 2003 he conceived and developed Prudential’s investment management business for Vietnam and, despite the closure of PPMV Asia, remained on the investment committee for Prudential’s Vietnam private equity business through to 2012.

 

Between 2005 and December 2012 he was the chief financial officer of the Epic Shipping Group, with responsibilities for the day to day financial aspects of the business, including budgets, financial controls, compliance, treasury, banking, audits and tax planning. Additionally he has managed the structuring and execution of the group’s equity fund raisings, acquisitions, divestments and joint ventures.

 

Mr. Dean qualified as a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and the Chartered Institute of Taxation whilst working for Arthur Andersen & Co in London before being seconded to Hong Kong in 1985. He graduated from Bradford University, England with a Business Studies honours degree. Mr. Dean is also a Member of the Singapore Institute of Directors and a Member of the Hong Kong Securities Institute. He is a non-executive independent director and Audit Committee chairman of Singapore main board listed Petra Foods Limited.

 

Craig Martin, 43

Independent Non-executive Director

Audit Committee (Chairman)

Investment Committee

Nomination and Corporate Governance Committee

Remuneration Committee

 

Mr. Martin has 20 years of business building and direct investment experience in emerging markets in Southeast Asia. He has lived and worked in Southeast Asia (with a focus on the Greater Mekong region) since 1993, living in Cambodia (seven years), Vietnam (five years) and Singapore (eight years), and building businesses in Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos and investing in many sectors. His experience covers telecoms, agribusiness, building materials, education, media, retail, real estate, manufacturing, finance, logistics, transportation and infrastructure. Mr. Martin has a Masters of Engineering from the University of York, UK, and a MBA with Distinction from INSEAD, and is a member of the Singapore Institute of Directors.

 

From 1993 to 2000 Mr. Martin ran a consulting and advisory business in the Mekong region, advising multinationals on market entry,  mergers and acquisitions and growth strategies in Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar. From 2001 to 2005 Mr. Martin was a founding member of the Standard Chartered Private Equity business, investing in India and Southeast Asia, notable deals including 98 Holdings’ general offer and acquisition of a controlling stake in NatSteel, the management buyout of Unza Holdings, a personal care business with growth markets in Vietnam and Myanmar, and growth capital for ABG Shipping and banking software company I-flex. From 2005 to 2010 Mr. Martin was an investment director, and subsequently head of private equity, for Prudential Vietnam, notable deals including a US$50 million buyout in a leading animal feed business, a US$16 million buyout in a steel business, and a US$40 million growth capital investment to build-out of Vietnam’s first multiplex cinema chain. Since 2010 Mr. Martin has been a Managing Partner for CapAsia, an emerging market infrastructure fund manager, heading up SEASAF, a top-performing 2006 vintage fund, and is raising a US$350 million successor fund.

 

Christopher Appleton, 52

Independent Non-executive Director

Nomination and Corporate Governance Committee (Chairman)

Remuneration Committee

 

Mr. Appleton has 30 years of experience in finance covering banking, equity analysis, sales and management, funds management and private banking. Educated at Oxford and with post graduate studies at Tokyo University, Mr. Appleton has lived in Asia since 1984.

 

Starting his career as an Asia focused banker in London with Kleinwort Benson, Mr. Appleton then worked as an analyst of the Japanese auto and transport sectors in Tokyo before moving into equity sales and management. Since moving to Hong Kong in 1998 he ran a Pan Asian sales force for Salomon Smith Barney and then became Head of Asia for Fox-Pitt Kelton, at the time the investment banking arm of Swiss Re, directly running equity as well as being responsible for capital markets and advisory. During this period Mr. Appleton established the Tokyo office to complement the Asian business run out of Hong Kong.

 

In 2005 Mr. Appleton moved to found Faye Capital Ltd. Starting off as an advisory business selling Asian equity research to hedge funds, Faye Capital trialled a Pan Asian long bias equity fund process that was given third party asset management licences in 2008. Closing Faye Capital in 2010 Mr. Appleton moved to be Head of Investment Advisory Products for HSBC Private Bank in Hong Kong overseeing multi asset teams. Since leaving HSBC in 2011 Mr. Appleton has been managing his personal assets.

 

 

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