Michael Wilkerson — Mr. Wilkerson is Chief Executive Officer of Fairfax Africa Holdings Corporation. Fairfax Africa is an investment holding company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange focused on active management of a concentrated portfolio of long-term investments in high-quality African businesses.
Prior to his current role with Fairfax Africa, Mr. Wilkerson served as the Managing Partner of AgriGroupe Limited, a private investment firm which he co-founded in 2013 and whose core investment thesis was Food and Energy Security for the African Century. AgriGroupe sponsored in 2014 the $500 million take private acquisition of AFGRI Limited, South Africa’s leading agricultural and diversified foods group and the largest non-bank lender to the agricultural sector in South Africa, in 2015 the acquisition of Clean Energy Africa, a leading developer of clean energy projects and energy efficiency solutions, and in 2016 an investment in Ascendant Learning Limited, an innovative for-profit primary and secondary educational company with schools in Kenya and South Africa.
Previously, Mr. Wilkerson served as Global Co-Head of the Consumer, Food & Retail Group and as a Managing Director in the Financial Institutions Group at Lazard, one of the world's preeminent financial advisory and asset management firms. Mr. Wilkerson was also a Managing Director at Citigroup, where he led the Financial Institutions M&A effort in New York. Mr. Wilkerson was named in 2008 as one of the "40 under 40" in investment banking and private equity by Dealmaker magazine.
Mr. Wilkerson is Chairman of the Boards of Directors of each of AFGRI and Clean Energy Africa and a director of Ascendant. He is also Chairman of the Board of charity: water. Since its founding in 2006, charity: water has raised over $230 million to fund over 23,000 water projects in 24 countries globally to help over 7 million people get access to safe and clean drinking water, while providing over 1,600 jobs through its local implementing partners.
Mr. Wilkerson holds an MBA from Harvard Business School, a M.A. in International Relations from Yale University and a B.S. summa cum laude from Oral Roberts University.