Impetus-PEF appoints new chief exec

Andrew Ratcliffe joins the youth-focused charity from the Africa Governance Initiative.

UK charity Impetus-PEF (The Private Equity Foundation) has appointed Andrew Ratcliffe as its new chief executive officer.

Ratcliffe joins the charity, which focuses on initiatives to help disadvantaged young people, from the Africa Governance Initiative (AIG) where he was deputy CEO, Impetus-PEF said in a statement. AIG is a charity established by former UK prime minister Tony Blair to assist African governments in implementing their policy goals.

Ratcliffe replaces Julia Grant and will take up the post in April.

Among his previous roles Ratcliffe was a senior policy adviser in the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit until 2009, focused on developing polices regarding social mobility, secondary schools and parenting skills, and worked at Oxford University’s Social Policy Department on initiatives regarding poverty and educational disadvantages in the UK and South Africa.

“Andy has impressive and diverse experience, and from his time working in government he possesses detailed knowledge of the policy issues that affect the disadvantaged young people Impetus-PEF works with, which will prove invaluable to our future work,” Impetus-PEF chairman Johannes Huth said in a statement.

Impetus-PEF currently works with more than 20 charities supporting more than 50,000 young people with education and employment opportunities, it said.

Ratcliffe said in the statement: “The simple fact is that we’re letting down millions of young people in this country. Too often they aren’t given a proper chance to fulfil their potential in work or in education. That’s morally wrong. And it’s economically disastrous as we waste billions of pounds in untapped potential every year.

The problem is deep-rooted and complex, so it’s going to take more than good intentions to fix it. It’s going to take innovation, risk taking and hard-edged analysis. That’s where Impetus-PEF comes in – helping the most powerful approaches and organisations to get even stronger, to grow and to touch many more lives.”

In August, Impetus-PEF announced it was providing £8 million ($11.4 million; €10.5 million) in leveraged financing to three UK-based educational charities, Action Tutoring, Resurgo and The Access Project, as reported by Private Equity International.

The charity’s corporate supporters include private equity firms — among them Apax Partners, Apollo Global Management, Cinven, CVC Capital Partners, HgCapital, KKR, Permira, Silver Lake, Terra Firma, TPG and Warburg Pincus – placement agents, investment banks, and law firms, according to its website.

Among its grant-making trusts and foundation supporters is Level 20, an organisation established to promote the number of women in the private equity industry and chaired by Impetus-PEF trustee Hanneke Smitts.