About Us

Karisimbi Business Partners is a strategic advisory and investment services firm that takes a ‘hands-on’ approach to enterprise development in Rwanda and the East African region.

We translate strategy into concrete action, delivering practical recommendations that help businesses succeed. Karisimbi Partners works directly with promising ventures to ensure business strategy, management and resources are aligned for company growth and success.

Karisimbi Partners has worked with over 100 clients across multiple sectors, including Agro-processing, ICT, Professional Services, Media, Manufacturing, and Private Equity.

We work alongside the management teams of businesses with the potential to drive growth of key industries, expand employment, transfer knowledge and contribute to the economic development of the country and region.

Management Team

Nick Barigye | Managing Partner


Nick brings extensive strategic, operating and general management experience to Karisimbi Partners. He has served as CEO of the largest soy processor in Rwanda, Group Operations Officer of the largest investment company in Rwanda, CFO of the largest juice and dairy processor, and COO of one of the largest locally owned road construction companies in Rwanda. He has filled interim General Manager and various other roles for a number of companies ranging from commercial printing to building products manufacturing. He spent three years of his early career as a Policy Analyst at the Rwandan Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning where he was responsible for implementation of the Rwandan Government’s Fiscal Decentralization Strategy.

Nick is a self-starter with strategic, entrepreneurial and financial business development capabilities, Nick’s expertise in financial analysis, financial management and investment banking covers M & A, project management, budget preparation, execution, and analysis, capital raising, private equity investment appraisal & strategy. Nick has both public and private sector working experience. His expertise in policy formulation and strategy primarily focuses on process re-engineering, new market entry strategies, cost & efficiency optimization strategies, introduction of best corporate practice, and integration of acquisitions and businesses turn-around strategies. Nick brings extensive strategic, operating and general management experience working as both policy and executive management in various multi-national corporations for over 15 years.

Nick is currently an advisory board member to the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change – Rwanda Project and serves on the Board of Directors of; Green Hills Academy, AB Bank Rwanda and ADC (Rwanda’s premier handbag manufacturing factory that supplies exclusively to Kate Spade & Company).

Nick has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration, majoring in Strategic Management from Strathmore Business School in Kenya, one of the leading Business Schools on the Continent and Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from the National University of Rwanda as well as diploma in Fiscal Decentralization and Local Government Financial Management at Duke University’s Sanford Institute of Public Policy and a diploma from the Swedish Institute Management Programme.

Nick
Barigye

Managing Partner

Sean Gilley | Director


Sean has nearly 20 years of management consultancy experience from top tier firms, such as Booz Allen Hamilton and Arthur D Little, as well as business start-ups and leadership experience, specifically in residential real estate where he has developed or brokered over $20M throughout his career.

Sean has lead teams on Strategic Execution; Process Change; Organizational Design; IT Strategy, Planning, and Implementation; Change Management; and Culture & Performance Improvement.  Key clients include Western Union, CenturyLink Telecom, US Internal Revenue Service, McDonald’s Corp, Intl Mining co, and US Airways.

Sean has a Master’s degree in Organizational Psychology from George Mason University outside of Washington, D.C., and was also certified in the Balanced Scorecard methodology from the founders themselves, Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton, in Cambridge, MA.

Sean is leading the management team at Abahizi Rwanda for the sole investment partner, Kate Spade New York, providing P&L leadership and operational oversight for this socially focused manufacturing business in Masoro, Rwanda that employs nearly 200 women artisans and exports ~1.4M USD in luxury fashion goods.

Sean is also leading a World Bank project focused on enhancing the Tourism industry in Rwanda, where he has led the design and implementation effort for Rwanda Development Board to operationalize Govt of Rwanda legislation.  KBP designed the processes based on the regulations and best practices from international tourism standards, has stood up a new internal department within RDB, led the business requirements for the ICT system, and is supporting the execution of licensure for the tourism entities themselves.

In his role at KBP Sean has guest lectured for classes and cohorts of students at Carnegie Mellon University, George Washington University, and others, and is a guest tutor for SME businesses in an accelerator program for a US based social investment fund targeting East African entrepreneurs that based in Kampala, Uganda.

Sean
Gilley

Director

Amanda Fung | Manager


Amanda Fung is a Canadian management consultant and entrepreneur based in Kigali, Rwanda. Having lived and worked on four continents, Amanda has gained a diverse range of experiences in High-Tech/Telecom, Auto, Energy, Agriculture, CPG/FMCG, Retail, Tourism, Film, Public Sector, Not-For-Profit, and Social Enterprise. Over the course of her career, Amanda has supported numerous major business and technology transformations, including a $70M marketing transformation and systems integration for one of Canada’s leading retailers. Fluent in French and Cantonese, with a degree in business administration from the University of Toronto and additional studies at Sciences Po Paris, Amanda is passionate about using business to advance global development.

Amanda
Fung

Manager

Lucie Stembirkova | Manager


Lucie has 8 years of experience in management consultancy in a major French consulting company and a 2-year experience in entrepreneurship in book publishing in France and in Rwanda. Lucie has held lead and support roles on client engagement in the energy, finance and public sector, on different topics such as strategy, operations, marketing, HR and technology. Originally from the Czech Republic, she has experience working in cross-cultural settings in Europe, Middle East and Africa. Fluent in English, French and Czech, with a finance degree from Sciences Po Paris, she is passionate about understanding the market and client needs and finding innovate ways for companies to thrive.

Lucie
Stembirkova

Manager

Eric Masagara | Senior Business Analyst


Eric Masagara brings 5 years of experience working in development consulting, agriculture, business development, and entrepreneurship in East Africa. He worked with Development Alternatives Inc., consulting with public institutions and NGOs in Rwanda, to measurably improve service delivery and efficiency. Eric applied his entrepreneurial mindset to work in Rwanda’s agriculture sector, designing a mobile payment facilitation business working with dairy farmers, and a seed multiplication business. Prior to joining Karisimbi, he worked with GET IT, a food distribution and agro-processing startup, as the Director of Business Development in charge of sales and investor relations. Eric earned his B.A. in Political Science and History from the University of Michigan in 2012. His professional interests center on exploring how social innovation and entrepreneurship can transform sectors and drive economic development.

Eric
Masagara

Sr. Business Analyst

Caroline Makara | Senior Business Analyst


Caroline is a Finance Major and a Certified Public Accountant of Kenya (CPAK) with over 3 years professional experience in audit, finance and tax advisory, assisting clients in diverse sectors in the agriculture, manufacturing, petroleum, energy, banking, communication, insurance and construction industries, as well as with NGOs. Prior to joining Karisimbi Business Partners, she worked as a Senior Tax Analyst at PKF Consulting Limited. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce with a major in Finance from Multimedia University of Kenya. Over her working experience, Caroline has acquired invaluable knowledge of tax reporting, compliance and operational performance with leading firms across the Rwandan economy that has helped provide valuable insights that shape clients’ recommendations.

Caroline
Makara

Sr. Business Analyst

Elvis Ngenzi | Senior Business Analyst


Elvis is entering his fourth year at Karisimbi Partners, where his work has focused on market analysis and investment feasibility studies. Elvis has held lead and support roles on client engagements across various sectors in Rwanda, Kenya, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Since 2016, he has served as the Project Manager for a 10M USD Public-Private-Partnership in the sugar sector, facilitating major infrastructure development and technology deployment. Elvis holds a Bachelor’s degree with honors in Business Administration majoring in Finance from the University of Rwanda at the College of Business and Economics.

Elvis
Ngenzi

Sr. Business Analyst

Anysie Ishimwe | Business Analyst


Anysie Ishimwe holds a Bachelor of Arts from Hope College where she majored in Business Management and Psychology. In her short career, she has worked in various business roles including student-level consulting, employee benefits, and partnerships. During her time in college, she served as a student consultant for the college’s Center of Leadership – a program that aims to train students in the consulting process through solving “real world” cases from West Michigan companies of various sizes. One of the projects she worked on was revamping the e-commerce platform for Gordon Food Services- the largest privately held food distributor in North America. After graduation in 2016, Anysie worked as a Benefits intern and Staffing Specialist at Haworth, Inc., a global furniture manufacturer in based in West Michigan. Prior to working with Karisimbi Business Partners, Anysie was a Global Health Corps fellow at Gardens for Health international where she served as a partnerships coordinator. She naturally gets excited by solving problems and she is even more motivated when that is contributing to the development of Rwanda in big or small ways.

Anysie
Ishimwe

Business Analyst

Joel Finnerty | Business Analyst


Joel is currently in his first year at Karisimbi Business Partners. He has lived in Rwanda for 10 years and brings experience in sales, marketing and business analysis. Joel studied in various secondary schools around East Africa and graduated from Sir John A. Macdonald in Canada on the principal’s list. Most recently Joel has been running a company which he founded offering First Aid training and Swimming programs throughout Kigali. As a young entrepreneur he is excited to bring his unique experience in Rwanda, creativity and drive to the Karisimbi team.

Joel
Finnerty

Business Analyst

Talia Gorajia | Marketing Manager


Talia Cordero is a brand and marketing strategist who believes storytelling is the most powerful tool an organization can use to communicate their vision. After spending half a decade working in PR and marketing for multimillion dollar brands and startups, she has learned what truly drives a successful and long-term brand strategy – the ability to connect with your audience.

Most of her career has been spent in international tour marketing and corporate and consumer branding. Talia has worked with entertainment groups such as AEG and Goldenvoice, where she played an integral role in implementing print and digital marketing strategies that resulted in sold out arenas across the US and Canada. Her diverse background in corporate and consumer branding lead to strategizing direct response optimizations that generated an increase in annual ROIs among brands like Casper Sleep, Sono Bello and Jackthreads. Her passion for storytelling continues to be the foundation for marketing and branding planning, strategy and implementation initiatives.

Talia is a California native and holds her BA in Business Administration – Entrepreneurship from California State University, Fullerton.

Talia
Gorajia

Marketing Manager

Chase Carroll | Consultant


Charles (Chase) Carroll is a Certified Public Accountant from the United States and is a management consultant and investment advisor at Karisimbi Business Partners. He is passionate about understanding and finding solutions to multi-faceted business challenges. Chase has experience working in cross-cultural settings both in East Africa and in the United States and has held positions in lead and support roles for projects in a variety of industries, including manufacturing and logistics, commercial real estate, technology and service. Since 2016, Chase leads the development of business and strategic planning engagements, often in a financial capacity, where he manages the development of detailed financial models and market analysis that lead to government and private investment. Chase also actively supports in the strategic management, business development and internal operations for a portfolio of companies started and/or supported by Karisimbi Partners. In this capacity, Chase oversees cultural, strategic and structural evolutions to improve client deliverables, internal operations, client relations and profitability. This is in an effort to improve overall company efficiency. This done both by translating findings into recommendations for the Managing Director and building out internal financial and operational management tools for the management teams of those companies.

Chase
Carroll

Consultant

Jill Gilley | Business Manager


Passionate leader with experience in public affairs, foundations, and non-profit organizations. Early professional experience includes serving a United States Congressman and working for the CEO of a multi-national energy corporation in his private foundation.

Mid-career experience includes grass roots service with a non-profit which solidified community development that lead to joining the Denver Leadership Foundation to work with local political and business leaders on several projects with an emphasis on public-private partnerships. Also helped to start and manage a social-impact residential real estate firm.

An independent thinker with management experience who likes to solve problems and work on teams. High interpersonal, communication, writing and public speaking skills and a willingness to serve the larger good, which has enabled relationships and impact across government, non-profit and business sectors.

Jill
Gilley

Business Manager

Gilbert Abagiraneza | Office Manager

Gilbert Abagiraneza serves as the Office Manager at Karisimbi Partners.  He is currently pursuing a Bachelor Degree of Business Management in Finance at the University of Kigali.  Before coming to Karisimbi he served at Elim Company as supervisor in charge of other employees and customer service delivery. He has developed skills in multitasking and is coordinating many internal projects for the KBP team.

Gilbert
Abagiraneza

Office Manager

Theophile Hakizimana | MD of Asili Natural Oils


Theophile is a holder of a Bachelor’s degree in Management and an MBA augmented by substantial experience accumulated in consulting, managing and providing leadership to Small and Medium Enterprises in Rwanda. Theophile has been recruited on multiple occasions to turn around multiple businesses by providing strong management, financial and strategic support. Theophile is a visionary who finds special pleasure in nurturing start-ups into successful companies.

Theophile’s specialty is people-development. He has built supply chains from scratch among some of the poorest cassava and seed oil farmers in Rwanda. He has developed teams of professional staff and temporary laborers built around integrity and the intrinsic value of the individual. Theophile has most recently designed a structure whereby he employed hundreds of unskilled labourers that could not be otherwise employed to develop land and create economic opportunity in one of the poorest sectors in Rwanda.

To learn more, please visit: https://asilioils.com/

Theophile
Hakizimana

MD of Asili

Clarisse Uwineza | MD of Acacia Accounting

Clarisse Uwineza Nzabonimana is a Certified Public Accountant registered with the institute of Certified Public Accountants of Rwanda (iCPAR).

Clarisse began her work with Bridge2Rwanda Services as an accountant trainee in October 2012 and advanced to a full-time staff accountant in February, 2013. She was one of the charter staff members of Acacia Accounting when it opened its doors in April 2013. Since then, Clarisse has advanced in Acacia very quickly, passing her CPA exams and being promoted to Senior Staff Accountant in 2014. As the managing director, Clarisse holds responsibilities in bookkeeping, financial statements preparation and review, compliance and regulatory assistance, accounting oversight, payroll processing, consulting and advisory services, tax preparation, filing and payment, training in accounting and accounting software.

Clarisse earned her CPA from the Kenya Accountants and Secretaries National Examinations Board (KASNEB). She also has a Bachelor of Business Administration, with a major in Accounting, from the Adventist University of Central Africa (AUCA), based in Rwanda.

To learn more, please visit https://www.acacia.rw/

Clarisse
Uwineza

MD of Acacia

Founding Team

Greg Urquhart | Co-Founder


Greg contributes more than twenty years of sales, strategy and management experience, working in international settings and across a number of vertical markets, including six years working in East and Southern Africa. His experience ranges from startups, including Karisimbi Partners and its invested companies, to the Fortune 100, to his current role as VP of Partners & Strategic Alliances for Xamarin Inc., a global mobile application development platform company based in San Francisco. Greg has held a variety of senior roles for over 15 years with Microsoft, in the US and Europe, including Managing Director of Global System Integrators and ISV partners, and GM of the national partner organization, leading Microsoft’s sales, marketing and engagement efforts across the largest consulting and software development companies in the United States.

Over the course of his career he has worked with organizations in sectors including: government, manufacturing, professional services, health-care and financial services. Greg has led diverse multi-national teams responsible for business planning, marketing, and sales, and prides himself on delivering optimal value for customers and strong business results for partners. Based in Paris for three years as the Director for Mid-size Enterprises, he oversaw strategy, sales, and marketing for this USD $2.6 Billion customer segment spanning Europe, Middle East, and Africa, delivering a connected sales and marketing process tailored to each diverse region. Results-oriented by nature, Greg has a passion for management excellence and people development, believing sound business planning and operational excellence are the keys to success. Greg graduated with honors from Westmont College in 1993, receiving his B.A. in Psychology & Business Economics, and attended the International Business Institute in Europe.

Greg
Urquhart

Co-Founder

Dano Jukanovich | Co-Founder


With more than 22 years of experience, Dano has held responsibility for business development and finance for start-ups and established companies including AT&T Wireless before accepting the role of CEO for family-owned business Lifestyle Homes & Construction. In 2009, Dano co-founded Karisimbi Partners, and moved to Rwanda with his family until 2012. Today, he manages the operations of the business remotely and visits Rwanda regularly. Prior to Karisimbi Partners, Dano accrued experience in the following industries: military intelligence, residential homebuilding and financing, satellite communication, information technology, and wireless communication. His background includes five years of service as an Army Airborne Ranger and Senior Intelligence Officer for the United States Army prior to application of his leadership to a variety of companies. With his unique capacity for crafting strategy, marshaling finance and streamlining operations, Dano excels at ensuring organizational efficiency.

Dano received his B.S. degree in Economics from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1993. As part of his military service, Dano lived in Seoul, Korea and learned Mandarin Chinese while studying in Beijing, China. He also earned his MBA degree with a specialty in Finance at Wharton. That same year, Dano earned a Master of Arts in International Economics & Asian Studies at the Johns Hopkins Nitze School of Advanced International Studies.

Dano
Jukanovich

Co-Founder


Carter’s background includes over twenty years of business experience, six while a scholar of management and entrepreneurship. He has held strategic-level marketing roles for a number of innovative companies in the following industries: automotive, consumer media, coffee, and information technology. In 2000, Carter left product management at Microsoft to become Co-Founder/President of Dealer Trade Group, a wholesale (B2B) marketplace for vehicles, which he led through successful launch. Today, Carter serves as Founding Director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership at Gordon College. In this role, among various other activities, he brings students to Rwanda each summer.

Carter was drawn to scholarly pursuits by growing concerns he had for the social and moral impact of entrepreneurial endeavors. Since receiving his doctorate, Carter has taught entrepreneurs on three continents. He has published in leading academic journals on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean in the areas of business ethics and social entrepreneurship and is intent on the practical application of new concepts and practical impact in these fields. His practical experience informs his teaching, writing, speaking and consulting in the areas of social entrepreneurship and business ethics and virtue. Carter is one of the authors of a National Code of Business Ethics commissioned by Rwanda’s Private Sector Federation (PSF). Carter received his B.A. in Business and Economics from Westmont College in 1992 and in 2005 earned a Ph.D. in Entrepreneurship while teaching and conducting research at Robert Gordon University, Scotland.

Carter
Crockett

Co-Founder

Since 2009, we have managed over 100 client engagements, including work with 5 of the largest investor groups in Rwanda.
Since 2009, we have managed over 100 client engagements, including work with 5 of the largest investor groups in Rwanda.
We have created award winning strategies across more than 20 sectors, including: Agri-processing, Manufacturing, Insurance, Information Technology, and more.
We have created award winning strategies across more than 20 sectors, including: Agri-processing, Manufacturing, Insurance, Information Technology, and more.
Our global team includes experienced advisors, entrepreneurs, investors and company managers with deep networks across Africa.
Our global team includes experienced advisors, entrepreneurs, investors and company managers with deep networks across Africa.
JOIN OUR TEAM

JOIN OUR TEAM

Portfolio Companies

Karisimbi Partners invests in high growth startups and greenfield investments with strong social impact visions. Our portfolio includes:

Asili Natural Oils logo
Acacia Accounting Logo
Lakeside Fish Farm Logo
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Interested in joining us? We are actively recruiting new talent.

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