Team

Our team of dedicated individuals have a wealth of experience in Africa and the power sector. They are committed to Gridworks’ mission and the opportunities we develop and invest in.

Simon Hodson

Chief Executive Officer

Simon is the Chief Executive Officer of Gridworks. Simon has a wealth of experience making and managing direct investments in developing countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Prior to Gridworks, Simon held leadership roles at a London based family office and 11 years with IPS (part of the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development) based in Paris, as well as establishing investment businesses on the ground in Cyprus and Cuba and worked for CDC Group in his early career. Simon is a Natural Sciences graduate of King's College, London and is a qualified Chartered Accountant.  

Helen Tarnoy

Chairman

Helen is the Chairman of Gridworks, and is widely known and respected across the African continent by both host governments, development finance institutions and multilaterals. She has worked at board and senior management levels for over twenty years, firstly in M&A and then in the power industry. After working for the AES Corporation on privatisations in Hungary, she rose to become CEO of the national power company in Cameroon, where she lived for two and a half years. In 2004, she co-founded Aldwych International, one of the most successful Africa-focused IPP developers. Helen has a wealth of corporate and project finance experience, is a seasoned negotiator and public speaker. Helen has an MA from Oxford in Modern Languages.

Chris Flavin

Director

Chris is a Director at Gridworks*. He has responsibility for developing and managing investments. Chris has extensive international project development and M&A experience which spans Africa, Asia and Europe. Prior to joining Gridworks, Chris spent five years at CDC Group, the final three of which included a focus on transmission & distribution projects and off-grid investments. Chris is a qualified lawyer and spent nine years in private practice advising private equity investors prior to joining CDC Group’s legal team in 2014. 

Camilla Summerskill

Executive Assistant

Camilla is an Executive Assistant at Gridworks. She supports Simon and the wider team in daily and corporate operations. Camilla holds an MA in International Politics and a BA in History from Newcastle University. Camilla has previously held roles in the international development sector, most recently working at a leading international health NGO operating in a similar geography to Gridworks.

Shaun Githuku

Business Development Manager

Shaun is an Investment Executive at Gridworks.** Shaun joined CDC Group four years ago as part of the Equity Infrastructure team, prior to which he worked at PwC, primarily advising infrastructure clients across East and West Africa. Shaun supported the development of the CDC strategy that underpinned the formation of Gridworks and brings specialist knowledge in electricity transmission and distribution (on and off-grid). Shaun holds a Masters in Chemical Engineering from Imperial College, London and an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management.

Richard Olley

Legal Counsel

Richard is Legal Counsel at Gridworks. His role includes corporate operational matters as well as supporting Gridworks’ investment activities in a legal capacity. Richard previously worked at Clifford Chance LLP specialising in private equity transactions. During his time at Clifford Chance, Richard worked on a number of African infrastructure projects and emerging market transactions, including while on secondment to CDC Group. Richard is a qualified lawyer.  

Daire Deeney

Team Assistant

Daire is a Team Assistant at Gridworks. She provides administrative support to the team in their daily and ad hoc operations. Daire studied in Ireland where she obtained a Bsc in Marketing and a Masters in Education from Trinity College Dublin. Most recently she has worked as an Economics and Business Teacher in Hertfordshire.

Sabri Regragui

Business Development Executive

Sabri is a Business Development Executive at Gridworks. Sabri brings experience in utilities in Africa, financial modelling and investment asset management and valuation. Most recently, Sabri was working for Meridiam where he supported the CEO and CFO of infrastructure projects with complex analytical needs. Previously, Sabri gained specific economical and tariff study experience for African utilities while working at SUEZ/LYDEC and ICEA. Sabri also gained specific renewable energy experience from his time at RES and Natixis. Sabri holds a Master’s in General Engineering from Ecole des Mines de Nancy.

Alice Chapple

Development Impact Advisor

Alice is Development Impact Advisor for Gridworks. She has worked in international development and impact investment for more than 30 years. Through her company, Impact Value, she currently works with several funds and companies to help them articulate, measure and maximise their impact both directly and through changes in the wider system. Alice’s other roles include Independent Chair of the CDC Plus Committee; Trustee of the Shell Foundation; member of the Advisory Board of Sainsbury’s Foundation; and Chair of Investor Watch whose programmes Carbon Tracker and Planet Tracker aim to drive more sustainable investment practices. Alice has an MA in Economics from Cambridge University and is a chartered accountant.

Joe Corbett

Technical Director

Joe is the Technical Director at Gridworks. He is an electrical engineer with over 30 years’ experience in utility management, project delivery and HV and MV power system design, operation and maintenance across the globe. Most recently he spent two years in Ghana for ESB International as Engineering Technical Advisor on an MMC funded support project to ECG. Previous experience includes providing technical assistance for the restructuring of Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC) to an independent Transmission System Operator (TSO), six years as Head of Engineering, Technology and Innovation at Mainstream Renewable Power and five years as General Director of Georgia’s National Transmission Utility (Georgian State Electrosystem) in Tbilisi.

Harriet Melton

Human Resources Advisor

Harriet is the Human Resources Advisor for Gridworks. Initially appointed by CDC to establish an HR model for Gridworks' transition from incubation phase to launch, Harriet's role is to provide generalist HR support covering strategy, OD, recruitment, talent, reward, performance management, policy and HR operations. An HR Consultant for the last 12 years Harriet has partnered with financial services clients in a range of HR standalone roles and projects including her time as the HR VP at the Anglo German investment bank Dresdner Kleinwort. Harriet has an HRM post graduate qualification and an Economic History degree from Exeter University.

Ignacio Iribarren

Senior Advisor

Ignacio is a Senior Advisor to Gridworks. Formerly a Principal Investment Officer at the IFC, dedicated to equity transaction in energy and infrastructure. Over his 25 + year career, he has carried out more than $ 8b in direct sector investments, including extensive asset management and sector transformation experience across the globe. He was a Principal at a leading Infrastructure Private Equity Fund and worked at AES Corporation where he managed power assets at the CEO and CFO level. He holds a BSc in Civil Engineering from Tulane University and an MBA from George Washington University.

* Currently on secondment from CDC ** CDC Representative