Actis poaches energy exec from joint venture partner

The firm has hired Mainstream Renewable Power’s Barry Lynch to lead its energy operations, one of three hires it made for the unit this month.

Emerging markets specialist Actis has bolstered its energy team’s operational capacities by hiring an executive with close links to two of its platform power companies.

Barry Lynch joins as director and head of energy operations at the firm having been most recently managing director of procurement, construction and operations at UK-based developer Mainstream Renewable Power.

There he sat on the board of Aela Energia and Lekela Power, two Actis energy portfolio companies in which Mainstream is a minority partner. Lynch played a crucial role in setting up and running the two ventures, which were respectively launched in June 2013 and February 2015, Actis said in a statement.

He also worked closely with Globeleq, a former Actis portfolio company which has sealed a number of partnerships with Mainstream, including joint development of renewable energy projects in South Africa.

Actis fully exited the company to Norway’s Norfund and CDC Group, the UK government’s development arm, in February last year. Michael Karlsson, Globeleq’s chief executive from 2009 to 2015, is now Actis’ co-head of energy.

Actis did not confirm whether Lynch’s move had previously been discussed and agreed with Mainstream before press time.

The firm has also appointed Javier Areitio as a director within its energy investment team. Areitio was most recently managing director and head of origination for Europe and Latin America at TerraForm Power and TerraForm Global, the two yieldcos of bankrupt US developer SunEdison.

Lisa Pinsley, now a South Africa-based director in the energy team, joined earlier this month from US firm American Capital Energy & Infrastructure, where she was a director for African investments.