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Investment Team

We know the one thing that makes a business truly successful – is its people.

It’s the inspiring leaders who guide the company to even greater success. The expert teams that work together to make it happen. The passionate individuals who make the extra effort to exceed expectations. And our growing team of people are no exception.

Gerrit Muller

Senior Investment Director

Gerrit is a founding member of Arise. He has 16 years’ experience in the industry, 12 of which include dealing with African private equity. Before joining Arise, he was employed as a member of Norfund’s Financial Institutions Department for seven years and sat on the advisory board of a number of renowned private equity funds. Before Norfund, he was a private equity executive at RMB Corvest, a private equity company within the FirstRand Group. He started his career at PwC Transactions, where he performed various due diligence and valuations assignments. Gerrit is a qualified Chartered Accountant and trained at PwC. He also holds a Bachelors and Honours of Commerce and Accounting from the University of Pretoria.

Hugo Azevedo

Senior Investment Director

Hugo joined Arise in July 2017, with over 18 years of international experience from the inception of his career auditing in Cape Town to Financial Due Diligence and Investment Banking in London and Europe (Ernst & Young and Rabobank International M&A). In 2004 he worked extensively in Africa gaining significant exposure to managing teams focused on client management, investment banking, transactional banking and global markets (African Alliance, Standard Bank and Standard Chartered Bank).  Hugo has also run his own consulting company and performed the role of CFO for a submarine telecom company, where he played an instrumental role in launching the first ever cable to cross the Atlantic in the southern hemisphere, linking Angola to Brazil and another cable linking Brazil to the USA. His experience includes two start up projects in which he formed part of the top management teams that built international bank subsidiaries in Angola for the Standard Bank and Standard Chartered Bank groups, respectively. Hugo is also a qualified Chartered Accountant.


Fred Pelser

Investment Director

Fred has over 15 years’ experience in the African private equity and financial services sectors. Having previously worked for Norfund as a member of the Financial Institutions department with a strong investment track record, he uses his extensive knowledge of African portfolio companies to the benefit of Arise. Fred is a qualified Chartered Accountant and trained at KPMG in South Africa. He holds both a Bachelor and an Honours degree in Accounting Science from the University of South Africa.

Priyansh Dhawan

Investment Manager

Priyansh joined Arise in February 2017. With over eight years of experience in emerging markets, he was responsible for analysing and assessing risk and performance within multiple Financial Institutions and banking sectors, across India, Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East. Prior to joining Arise, Priyansh joined the Graduate Programme at Rand Merchant bank working in both their India and South Africa offices. Priyansh holds a BBA from Emory University’s Goizueta Business School, and an MBA from the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business. He has also completed internships at Rothschild and Standard Chartered Equities Research.

Linda Ngcwangu

Investment Associate

Linda Joined Arise in July 2019. She has six years Investment banking experience and spent the last two years primarily working on Financial Institutions Group (FIG) advisory and subsequently, general corporate finance covering Sub-Saharan Africa. Prior to joining Arise she was part of corporate finance division at Absa. Linda holds a Bcom In Financial Management from the University of Pretoria and a Post Graduate Diploma from CIMA.

Andani Madzena

Investment Analyst

Andani joined Arise in 2019 as an investment trainee straight out of university. She became part of the permanent Arise team in April 2020. She holds a Honours Degree in Financial Markets from the University of Fort Hare.