Christopher M. Cantelmi
Chris is a Principal Investment Officer for the IFC Infrastructure & Natural Resources department based in Dubai, where he is responsible for origination and execution of IFC’s debt and equity investments in the power, water, energy & other essential infrastructure sectors throughout the MENA region. Amongst his other activities over the past six years, he successfully led IFC’s efforts to support the renewable energy programmes in Jordan and Egypt, while creating and structuring complementary low transaction cost, standardised limited recourse project financing programmes to support the many renewable developers participating. The IFC programmes have to date successfully financed 12x renewable projects in Jordan (c.650MW) and 14x in Egypt (c.1100MW), while the programmatic concept is being rolled out regionally.
Prior to joining the IFC in 2013, Chris served at the Mubadala – GE Capital (MGEC) joint venture for three years in Abu Dhabi as a Director and Head of Energy & Project Finance, as well as a member of the MGEC senior leadership team. Prior to MGEC, Chris built his name in the EMENA region during his 11 years in London as Vice President and Head of Project Finance for Marubeni Corporation’s regional power development arm. During that period, Chris led the Project Finance and M&A activities for Marubeni successfully overseeing the 15GW growth its power and renewable energy business.
Before Marubeni, Chris was a seasoned project finance banker: in the 1990s serving in London for Sumitomo Mitsui Bank (SMBC), responsible for leading project finance advisory, origination and execution in the MENA region; in NYC for Citibank; and in Washington, DC for OPIC. Chris began his career, however, as a well-travelled engineer which culminated by serving as UN’s Head Engineer in Northern Iraq during the relief efforts immediately following the first Gulf War in 1991 just prior to commencing his MBA/MA.
Chris has an MBA in Finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and an MA in International Economics and Middle Eastern Studies from the Paul Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at John Hopkins University. He also has a BS with honours in Civil Engineering from UCLA.