Management Team

Neil Smith
Principal and Chairman
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Before moving to Russia in 2004 Neil was Head of Alternative Investments at Morley Fund Management in London (now Aviva Investors) where he invested over USD 6 billion of principal capital into fixed income, equity and real estate. During that time the company was the largest investor into UK government Public Private Partnership transactions, ensuring that a large number of hospitals, schools and other important social infrastructure were built.

After leaving Morley in 2004 Neil moved to Russia to set up his own investment management and debt advisory business, investing into major industrial and infrastructure projects. Following the financial crisis Neil converted a number of his debt positions into equity, most notably becoming owner of a large alcoholic beverages company in Russia / CIS.

Since 2011 Neil and his management team have successfully turned this business around under the umbrella of Eastern Beverage Company, which today owns production facilities across Russia and one of the largest FMCG distribution networks in Ukraine selling over 65 million litres of alcohol per annum.

Neil graduated with honours from Cambridge University and is a qualified Chartered Accountant.

Andrew Coulton
Principal
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Andrew is a seasoned investment banker with vast transactional experience in Emerging Markets and Asia. He began his career at Goldman Sachs & Co. in 1982. In 1995 he moved to Deutsche Bank London where he held the posts of Managing Director and Global Head of Futures & Options and CEO of MENA Region. In 2001 he established EIFA in Tehran as a joint venture between Deutsche Bank and Karafarin Bank. In 2002 he left Deutsche to set up Saffar Capital in Dubai where he was responsible for covering Emerging Markets in Asia and Latin America. At that time Saffar bought a 60% stake in Zawya.com and built it into a top business information site in the region before selling it to Thompson Reuters in 2012.

In 2005 as Chairman of Saffar he created the first licensed investment bank in Saudi Arabia, Saudi Swiss Securities, as a joint venture between Credit Suisse and regional partners.

Andrew graduated with honors from Oxford University.

Andy Kuzich
Principal
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Andy commenced his career serving for 5 years as an Engineering Officer in the Royal Navy. He then worked for more than a decade as a consultant in PwC based in London Poland and Ukraine. In London Andy was member of the team which advised the UK Government on the privatisation of the Electricity Industry.

Andy has also worked for several telecommunications companies as CFO.

Andy holds an honours Engineering degree from University College London and is a qualified UK Chartered Accountant.

Andy speaks fluent Ukrainian and Russian in addition to English.

Billy Davis
Principal
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Billy has over 25 years experience working across financial markets in the UK, Middle East and the US. He spent 16 years at Deutsche Bank, holding various positions in marketing, communications and relationship management. After leaving Deutsche Bank Billy joined Credit Suisse as Director of Strategic Relationship Management. He has a wealth of transactional experience, including the origination and subsequent funding of the $500 million development of London’s O2 Arena and led Allied Minds $100m pre IPO fundraising.