Stéphane Brabant is a partner at the international law firm Herbert Smith Freehills in Paris. He advises on the structuring of investments between multinationals and States. He has also built a strong practice advising on crisis prevention and management, particularly in the context of large investment projects in the natural resources and energy sectors in Africa.
Stéphane brings his clients an in-depth knowledge of Africa, having lived and worked on the continent for seven years and advising almost exclusively in French-speaking Africa for over three decades. He helps clients using his extensive network of local contacts and significant experience negotiating on the ground with African governments and other local players.
He has also built a strong practice on business and human rights issues and sustainable investment, advising investors on these topics in Africa. He was one of the experts advising John Ruggie (former UN Special Representative) on the capacity-building obligations and responsibilities of States and multinationals relating to businesses and human rights.
Aminata Niane is an international consultant and a director at Atos.
After a number of years working in the private and public sectors in Senegal, Aminata managed APIX (the Senegalese agency for the promotion of investments and major projects) from 2000 to 2012. She subsequently held the position of special advisor to the Senegalese president until May 2013.
She has an engineering degree in science and technology of food industries and an MBA.
Marlyn Mouliom-Roosalem is a director at Afriland First Bank.
She previously worked at the OECD in Paris as an economist and statistician and at the Banque de France as a risk management advisor in foreign exchange.
Upon her return to the Central African Republic, she headed the Bourse des valeurs mobilières de l’Afrique centrale (Central African stock exchange) from 2004 to 2006, acted as economic and financial advisor to the Head of State from 2008 to 2010, was Minister of Trade and Industry from 2011 to 2012 and managed the Road Maintenance Fund from January to April 2013.
Marlyn holds a DEA post-graduate qualification in mathematics applied to economic sciences from the University of Dauphine Paris 9 (1995) and an engineering degree in economics-statistics from the Ecole nationale de la statistique et de l’administration économique in Paris.
Gaël Le Boulch
Gaël Le Boulch is head of open innovation in a major energy company and a research fellow at Paris Dauphine University. He holds a PhD in Management Sciences. He has taken an active interest in Africa for more than fifteen years.
Through both his personal and professional relationships, Gaël’s view of Africa is a modern and contemporary one, valuing African initiatives in business as well as in culture and the arts. He is a proponent of a model for innovation specific to Africa and Africans.
Vice General Secretary
Elsa has been committed to advancing human rights in business and investment for several years. She works at Herbert Smith Freehills law firm and acts as firm-wide coordinator for the Business and Human Rights Practice. Elsa advises French and international clients from the private and public sector on compliance with international, domestic and sectorial business and human rights standards. In particular, she accompanies clients in the operationalisation of responsible production in their activities and global supply chains, and in securing social licences to operate at the various stages of the international infrastructure project lifecycle.
Prior to joining HSF, Elsa has worked on various projects related to infrastructure development and local content in Africa. She has also conducted research on sustainable investment that has been supported by the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment in conjunction with the French Responsible Investment Forum.
Didier Acouetey is the president and founder of the AfricSearch Group, the Paris-based leading recruitment and human resources consulting firm specialising in Africa, with branches in Abidjan, Cotonou, Dakar, Douala, Johannesburg, Lomé and other African capitals, which was established in 1996.
In 2008, he was considered one of the 50 most active Africans in the world in the last 50 years by Africa International Magazine.
Since 1996, Didier’s ambition has been to find African talents and connect them with foreign and African companies operating in Africa.
Didier is convinced of the importance of human capital in the economic development of African countries and is thus spearheading the movement toward the return of qualified individuals to Africa. He is also strongly involved in various organisations aimed at transforming the African continent and supporting promising young African leaders.
Didier Acouetey is a graduate of the École des Arts et Métiers in Paris and holds an MBA from ESCP EAP, one of France’s top business schools.
Bertrand Montembault is a partner at the international law firm Herbert Smith Freehills, based in the firm’s Johannesburg office. He is qualified in France and has 25 years of experience helping clients on various aspects of their operations and projects in French-speaking Africa, mainly in the mining and energy sectors.
He lived and worked in Gabon for two years prior to joining the firm and has an excellent knowledge of Francophone Africa’s local and regional legal systems, including OHADA, and a strong network of local contacts.