President and CEO, Gray Ghost Ventures
Gray Ghost Ventures
Arun Gore as the President and CEO of Gray Ghost Ventures is responsible for portfolio management and day-to-day operations of the management company Gray Ghost Management & Operations. He also serves as a board member of a number of the Portfolio Companies. Arun understands the markets, challenges and opportunities associated with investing in early-stage businesses and brings an informed perspective and practical experience to the leadership of the Manager.
Arun brings an extensive background in mobile telecommunications, international supply chain and financial consulting. His 35+ years of experience in the United States, Asia, Africa and the Middle East, includes serving as a member of the executive team at T-Mobile USA as the Chief Financial Officer of Cook Inlet T-Mobile, has been valuable in underwriting international investment opportunities and working with the entrepreneurs of portfolio companies. His role, as a part of the senior management team at T-Mobile, included market & sales operations, managing joint ventures, M&A and fund raising. Arun also brings a wealth of entrepreneurial experience as the prior owner and manager of SAI, an international supply company for oilfield and energy supplies with operations in 13 countries and Atex Oil Company, a wholesale and retail oil refining and distribution business where he was responsible for the finance, inventory, asset protection and fleet management. His prior work also included international M&A, auditing and taxes.
Since 2006 Arun has been actively engaged in promoting and supporting impact investments for Gary Ghost. In 2008, he moved to Atlanta to take over the management of the impact investment funds and subsequently, the management of the entire Gray Ghost operations. He completed his undergraduate studies in India and holds dual degrees: a BSc in the Sciences and a BS in Accounting. He completed post-graduate studies in the United States and holds an MBA in Finance.
Recognizing the growing importance of impact investing, EMPEA established an Impact Investing Council in 2013 to play a leading role in professionalizing and scaling the industry, focusing specifically on market-based solutions to major global social and environmental challenges. EMPEA believes that private equity investors have much to contribute to impact investing in emerging markets. The private equity discipline lends commercial expertise and financial rigor, and private equity practitioners have years of experience operating in underserved geographies and inherently impactful sectors (e.g. financial services, healthcare, education, agribusiness, and housing), with customer segments (e.g. low income people and those excluded from traditional sources of finance).
Since its inception, EMPEA has contributed to the acceptance of emerging markets private equity as a credible and attractive investment approach. Despite the vast potential for impact investing to unlock growth and reduce poverty in emerging markets there is still much skepticism about its power to do so. The domain is fragmented, and the data available to investors on the institutional quality of investment managers as well as their performance, are lacking. The EMPEA Impact Investing Council is well positioned to help private equity impact investing overcome some of these obstacles and realize its potential. The Council seeks to bring together leading impact investing practitioners and thought leaders to share best practices, support rigorous research, assist in the development of innovative business models and performance databases. In this chapter, several Council members describe a range of private equity approaches to impact investing, explain how they add value and measure impact, and highlight the challenges still to overcome.