Pedersen Names Financial Services Practice Group Africa Head

March 18, 2016 – Executive search firm Pedersen & Partners has named Frank Behrendt as a principal and head of its financial services practice group in Africa.

Mr. Behrendt is an emerging markets specialist and has originated and executed senior level searches for banks and financial institutions across Asia Pacific while based in Singapore, and Pan-Africa from London and Johannesburg.

After spending four years in Singapore managing a team of recruiters in equities and asset management, he returned to Europe in 2009 to run the London office of U.K.-based financial services search firm Carpenter Farraday, which is where he started working on African search mandates. In 2011 he joined Clement May Africa (Pty) Ltd, a boutique search firm with offices in London and Kuala Lumpur. There he focused on the African financial services sector, including corporate and investment banking, corporate and project finance, asset management, private equity, venture capital micro-finance and insurance.

“Becoming a part of such an experienced and renowned global team sets an important milestone in my career and I’m thrilled to be partnering with my colleagues in Johannesburg and London, locations which are both hubs for African banking,” said Mr. Behrendt.

“In the years to come, I believe Africa will continue to offer robust growth opportunities for executive search firms and the experience I’ve accumulated over the last few years has shown me that in this part of the world people are even more determined to become excellent leaders and to develop through their capabilities the country that they are living in.”

“We are very pleased to have secured Frank to lead our financial services practice group in Africa,” said Martin C. Pike, the managing director of the Sub-Saharan Africa region at Pedersen & Partners. “The continent will continue to play a key strategic role for many of our multinational clients’ expansion endeavors and Frank has the right credentials, knowledge, management experience and insight into the region, making him the most indicated expert to understand the pressures faced by our clients and to provide vital solutions.”


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The economy of Africa consists of trade, industry and agriculture. The Middle East / North Africa region has a population of over 400 million in 22 countries. Opposing views on politics, history, religion, culture and economic fortunes are vast and well known in the region. Older more traditional economies, like Egypt, now sit alongside the relatively new emerging economies established on the back of crude oil and natural gas production.

According to recruiters expanding in the region, business is booming and a number of search firms therefore have continued their migration to the continent.

Just recently, MRINetwork expanded in the region with the launch of offices in Cape Town and Johannesburg Fourways. Lynn Kleinsmith is now president of MRINetwork Cape Town while Nina Axt leads the firm’s efforts as managing director in Johannesburg Fourways.

Boyden recently opened a new office in Nairobi, further expanding its presence to a third region in Africa. Farah Samanani is managing partner leading its East Africa operations, serving Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Ethiopia.

Global consortiums have also expanded their footprint in the region. Search organizations Amrop, IIC Partners, and IRC Partners have all added member firms in the region over the past year.

Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media

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