MSI lures BlackRock oil and gas maven

Erstwhile executive Ahmad Atwan has signed on with Morgan Stanley Infrastructure.

Morgan Stanley Infrastructure (MSI) has hired Ahmad Atwan, a former senior official with investment manager BlackRock who has extensive sector expertise in oil and natural gas.

John Veech, managing director and head of Americas for MSI, told Infrastructure Investor that Atwan will be based in New York as an executive director, reporting to Veech himself.

Veech called energy an “investment opportunity set” for Morgan Stanley, crediting “the infrastructure behind oil and gas” with helping to drive deal-flow in the US.

Because of his “knowledge,” “skills,” as well as his “solid Rolodex,” Atwan is a “terrific hire for us,” Veech said.

Veech pointed out the appointment of Atwan also complemented the hiring in January of Andrew Medvedev, a specialist in electric power and renewables and a MSI vice president.

Atwan joined BlackRock as head of energy private equity in 2010. A voicemail message left with the BlackRock media department in New York was not returned.

Prior to BlackRock, Atwan headed energy at Dubai-based Millennium Private Equity for two years. In 2006, he founded a sugar cane-to-ethanol production company named Green Star Energy, which was later sold.

A Harvard graduate and ‘Rhodes Scholar,’ Atwan began his career in finance with the Boston Consulting Group in 1998.

MSI is part of Morgan Stanley Investment Management, the asset management arm of Wall Street firm Morgan Stanley.

Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners is a $4 billion fund. MSI is now raising capital for Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners II, its second infrastructure offering.