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  Expert Advisors

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Jason Harlan

Jason Harlan has over twenty years experience in the energy and infrastructure sector as a senior executive, investment banker and attorney. Harlan was responsible for Southern Company's (Mirant) 1.7 Billion dollar investment in the Berlin utility Bewag (1996-2002). As architect of the investment and Chief Executive Officer -Germany, Harlan helped achieve the retooling of the previously state owned company, which became the most profitable utility in Germany by 2001. The strong year on year performance allowed for a successful sale in the troubled industry context of 2002, resulting in an IRR of over 30% for the investment. Following the sale and Mirant's exit from the European market, Harlan joined the energy and infrastructure investment bank, Fieldstone in 2002. Harlan led the management buy out of Fieldstone from the South African Insurer Gensec in 2003. At Fieldstone, Harlan focused on new energy sectors such as wind, carbon abatement, bio-generation and energy technology. He was asked by CIR, a company with whom he had fashioned a partnership at Southern, to join the board of a carbon credit initiative. This activity led to his foundation of the forerunner of Resource Energy in 2006.

Harlan began his career as a project finance attorney with Katten Muchin and Zavis in Chicago. He was recruited by Troutman Sanders in Atlanta in 1993, where he served exclusively as a project and project attorney for Southern's international developments in South America, Asia and Europe. Harlan was recruited by Southern (SEI) in 1995 to act as Project Director. During his Berlin years, Harlan was also charged as Chief Development Officer -Europe with all of Soutnern's (Mirant) development activities on the continent. As a developer, Harlan has experience in structuring transactions in over two dozen countries in Africa, Asia, South America, the Caribbean and Europe.

Harlan holds a law degree from Cornell University in Ithaca, a Master's in Classical Philosophy from St. John's College in Annapolis and a Bachelors degree from Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in Washington, D.C. He is registered with the CFA in London and is a member of the state bar of Illinois and Georgia.

Cesare Bastianini

Cesare Bastianini has been a Director within CIR’s Corporate Development group since 2005.

From 2000 to 2005, Mr. Bastianini worked as Associate and thereafter Investment Manager within BA Capital Partners (Bank of America’s Private Equity partnership), in London and in Milan. From 1997 to 1999, he worked within Merrill Lynch’s London-based Investment Banking group.

Cesare Bastianini graduated in Economics from the University of Turin in 1995 and was awarded an MSc in Economics by the London School of Economics in 1997.

Derek van Niekerk

Derek has 20 years experience of financial, commercial and general management in an agro-industrial environment. He was involved in the establishment of Komati Mill, RSA, and its expansion thereafter and he also spearheaded the implementation of the SAP enterprise resource planning (ERP) project within TSB. As Operations Director, Derek holds a broad knowledge of global sugar dynamics and operations.

Claudio Stabon

Has been in charge of Strategy and the Development of new initiatives for CIR and COFIDE since 1998. From 1989 to 1998 he was a Vice President with Bain & Co., working for the Milan and Boston offices as officer in charge of the M&A and Private Equity businesses.

Prior to that, he worked for McKinsey (Milan) and for Westinghouse & Co. (Pittsburgh, USA).

Claudio Stabon graduated from the University of Genoa in Electronic Engineering in 1983 and was awarded an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1987.

Stefan de Villiers

Stefan has been an investment executive with VenFin Ltd since 2005. From 1994 to 2004 he was employed within senior management and thereafter as a Director of Biwater in the Johannesburg office (a multinational water & infrastructure contractor).

Prior to that, he was senior Mechanical Engineer with VWL Consulting Engineers (now Africon). This was preceded by a specialised career in theoretical aero & fluid dynamics.

Mr. de Villiers graduated in Aeronautical Engineering from the University of the Witwatersrand (Johannesburg) in 1984.