Mr. Benard is Managing Partner of SGI Frontier Capital (“SGI”) and leads Cerberus’ private investment activities in frontier-market countries in Asia and Africa. Mr. Benard joined Cerberus in 2018 when the firm acquired SGI to strategically advance its investment activities in emerging and frontier markets.
Mr. Benard has led equity and debt transactions in a variety of emerging and frontier markets across Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. Mr. Benard joined SGI in 2013 as Chief Executive Officer and most recently, served as Managing Partner. During his tenure at SGI, he was instrumental in helping establish it as a pioneer in frontier market investing with a strong reputation as an early-mover in markets such as Ethiopia, Georgia, and Mongolia.
Prior to SGI, Mr. Benard was a Managing Director at Gryphon Partners, an advisory and investment firm focused on frontier markets in the Middle East and Central Asia. He began his career at Cleary Gottlieb, where he worked on cross-border mergers, acquisitions, and private equity investments, including leveraged finance.
Mr. Benard has published numerous articles on finance, trade, and geopolitics in frontier markets for The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Foreign Affairs, and Foreign Policy, among others.
Mr. Benard graduated with honors from Claremont McKenna College and received a J.D. from Stanford Law School. He is a Non-Resident Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University and has been a guest speaker several times at Stanford Law School and the Graduate School of Business to discuss frontier markets as well as international trade and investment.