Investment Associate – Nairobi, Kenya

Founded in 2017, Optimizer Foundation is an impact investing organisation (org. structure is non-profit), with presence in Nairobi, London and Stockholm. The Foundation strives to improve access to education and health services, as well as youth employment opportunities across East and West Africa. As such, the Foundation invests capital (equity/debt), coupled with business advisory support, into early (seed) stage businesses demonstrating impactful and scalable solutions in above sectors. 

The Foundation is now looking to recruit an Investment Associate to be based out of Nairobi.

Role description

The Investment Associate will support Optimizer Foundation in growing its portfolio of impactful early-stage businesses. Key focus will be on growing the pipeline (sourcing/evaluating) of high potential investment opportunities; work on due diligence processes; and provide advisory support to the portfolio companies. The role is a unique opportunity to join a young and fast-growing impact investing organisation and play an instrumental part in building the portfolio for East and West Africa, improving the lives for millions of people over the coming years. The person will work out of Nairobi, and report to the COO based in-country.

Key responsibilities include:   

  • Deal scouting/assessment: growing the pipeline of high potential social businesses across East and West Africa. This includes identification and initial assessment of investment opportunities
  • Due diligence: conducting due diligence on high potential investment opportunities
  • Portfolio management: monitoring select portfolio companies, including analysis of financial/impact reporting, participation in investor meetings, providing/coordinating business advisory etc.
  • Building sector expertise: deepening the Foundation’s expertise in its core sectors, as well as specific business models, geographies etc., through research and monitoring of sector trends
  • Other: building/managing relationships with key ecosystem actors including investors, accelerators/incubators and other organizations; represent the Foundation at key events in the region (i.e. conferences etc.)

Practical information:

  • Travel: The role includes brief trips to other countries in East and West Africa
  • Compensation: Competitive
  • Starting date: As soon as possible


The role can be slightly adapted to the ideal candidate based on experience. 

  • East African citizen (i.e. legally eligible to work in Kenya) is a requirement
  • A minimum of 5-7 years of relevant experience – i.e. investment role; strategy/management consulting; or equivalent business advisory roles  
  • Strong analytical and strategic thinking skills –  i.e. qualitative/quantitative research; financial analysis (i.e. assessment of financial models/business cases) required
  • Existing network across the start-up and (impact) ecosystem in the region highly preferred
  • Track record in the social impact sector – i.e. experience working with social businesses or in an impact-oriented role
  • Demonstrated self-starter/ability to work independently; thriving in an entrepreneurial environment of a young and fast-growing impact investing organisation
  • Strong project management skills  

Kindly send your application including CV and cover letter to latest by 18th of April 2021. Please include your name in the subject line of the email. Applications will be assessed /interviews scheduled on a rolling basis.