Executive Search for Africa & Emerging Markets

Functions

Big 5 Search exists to find and attract the best functional leaders from a global and competitive talent pool for our Emerging Markets clients. It is not enough for us to secure specific expertise; we work closely with our clients to ensure that candidates have the right mindset, cultural fit and the adaptability necessary to succeed in their roles for the long term.

Governance

  • Chair, NEDs & IC members – Greenfield SME credit fund Ghana
  • Chair & NED – Offgrid energy / Consumer Finance Francophone Africa

Commercial

  • Chief Commercial Officer – Clean tech East Africa
  • Chief Commercial Officer – Downstream Fuels South Africa

Leadership

  • Chief Executive Officer – Social Infrastructure Developer Egypt
  • Chief Executive Officer – Mid & Downstream Fuel South Africa

Investment

  • Partner – Pan-African Private Equity Fund Tunisia
  • Africa Managing Director – Pan-African Forestry Fund Kenya

Finance

  • Chief Financial Officer – Pan-African Fintech lending Kenya
  • Chief Financial Officer – Agri production & distribution Egypt

People

  • Global HR Director – Emerging Markets clean tech Kenya
  • Africa HR Director – Fast Moving Consumer Goods Cote d’Ivoire

Technical

  • Chief Technology Officer – Fintech payments Nigeria
  • Project Director – Natural Gas to Power IPP Rwanda

Stakeholder

  • Head of Africa – Development Finance Institution UK
  • Managing Director Africa – Conservation Foundation Kenya
Countries in which the Big 5 team has placed candidates

Countries in which the Big 5 team has placed candidates

Our Team

James Adair

James Adair

Partner

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James Adair

Partner

James previously worked in commercial shipping as a chartering broker with HSBC and subsequently covering the OSV market in Africa with a specialist brokerage. He lived in Ghana when working as a GM for a shipping agency and later represented local owners in setting up a successful JV with Swire.

Following this he moved into Executive Search, working as a Consultant for an Africa focused boutique. During this time, he completed numerous C-level assignments with success in representing both operating companies and private equity firms.

William McCaw

William McCaw

Partner

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William McCaw

Partner

William began his career in search and, before joining Big 5 Search, headed the Private Equity teams at two leading international boutique search firms in London, Hong Kong and New York. He specialises in Emerging Markets Executive Search in Alternative Investments and represents clients in VC, Growth, Private Equity, Credit, Family Office, Impact Investing, Energy/ Infrastructure and Real Assets.

Will has completed multiple assignments from Partner to Associate level across North and Sub-Saharan Africa, Middle East and Asia, providing confidential advice on team composition, compensation, and competitor analysis.

Tim Harrison

Tim Harrison

Consultant

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Tim Harrison

Consultant

Tim has over 15 years of recruitment experience, with the last decade solely focused on executive and senior management positions in Africa. Tim has executed searches in a variety of sectors including Banking, FMCG, Microfinance, Agribusiness, Fintech, Pharmaceuticals, Insurance, and DFIs.

With a particular interest in the Financial Services sector, Tim has completed searches to for both multinationals and local businesses in key functions including Risk and Compliance, HR, IT Directors, and General Management.

Colleen McIntyre

Colleen McIntyre

Consultant

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Colleen McIntyre

Consultant

Colleen grew up in South Africa and has 20 years' experience of executive search spanning both Africa and Europe. She has delivered on C-level mandates across a variety of sectors including Agribusiness, Healthcare, Education, Insurance, and not-for-profits.

Partnering closely with clients throughout complex searches, Colleen has placed senior executives in both multi-billion dollar organisations and early-stage clean tech companies.