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Personality Profile: Adebayo Ogunlesi

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Adebayo “Bayo” O. Ogunlesi was born December 20, 1953 to the family of Prof. & Mrs. T.O. Ogunlesi of Makun, Sagamu, Ogun State. His father was the first Nigerian professor.

Young Ogunlesi obtained his Secondary School education from the prestigious King’s College in Lagos.

He received a B.A. with first class honors in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from Oxford University in London, England before proceeding to Harvard Law School in 1979 to receive a J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School and an M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School, which he pursued at the same time.

From 1980 to 1981, Ogunlesi served as a law clerk to Associate Justice Thurgood Marshall of the United States Supreme Court. Ogunlesi was an attorney in the corporate practice group of the New York City law firm of Cravath, Swaine & Moore, where he had been a summer associate while studying for his M.B.A.

In 1983, Ogunlesi joined the investment bank First Boston as an advisor on a Nigerian gas project. At First Boston, he worked in the Project Finance Group, advising clients on transactions and financings and has worked on transactions in North and South America, the Caribbean, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. From 1997 to 2002, he was the Head of the Global Energy Group of the by then renamed Credit Suisse First Boston (CSFB).

US president-elect, Donald Trump a few days back picked Nigerian, Adebayo Ogunlesi, an Investment banker and lawyer by profession, as part of his Economic, Strategic and Policy Forum that consists of 16 other business leaders.

Mr Ogunlesi’s organisations assets include Gatwick Airport, Edinghburh Airport and City Airport in London making him the first Nigerian to independently own airports in the West.
Below are 10 things you should know about the man ranked by Fortune magazine as the seventh most powerful black executive in the United States in 2002.

In July 2006, Ogunlesi started the private equity firm, Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP), a joint venture whose initial investors included Credit Suisse and General Electric. He currently serves as Chairman and Managing Partner.

GIP acquired the majority in London Gatwick Airport in a deal worth £1.455 billion in 2009. Ogunlesi was nicknamed “The Man Who Bought Gatwick Airport,” after he led Gatwick Airport Acquisition. His company bought the Edinburg Airport in 2012.

Ogunlesi was appointed to the Board of Directors at Goldman Sachs in 2012 before he was named Lead Director on July 24, 2014.

Ogunlesi served as an adviser, though informally, to Nigerian governments. He was an informal adviser to former President Olusegun Obasanjo on privatisation and he still maintains ties with his homeland.

Ogunlesi has been married to British-born optometrist, Dr. Amelia Quist-Ogunlesi since 1985 and the union is blessed with two children.

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