LeapFrog adds former Aus PM, Singtel and Ayala execs to advisory council

Former Australia PM Julia Gillard. Photo: Gillard's Facebook page

Emerging markets-focused private equity firm LeapFrog Investments has announced the appointment of former Australia prime minister Julia Gillard to its global leadership council.

The firm, which invests in Asia and Africa, also named Simon Israel and Jaime A Zobel de Ayala as new council members.

Israel is chairman of Singtel, a leading Asian telecommunications firm reaching 750 million customers, and a former president at Singapore state investor Temasek. Meanwhile, de Ayala is chairman and CEO of Philippine conglomerate Ayala Corporation.

Gillard, Israel and de Ayala join former AXA chairman and CEO Henri De Castries on the council. The advisory body provides strategic insights and guidance to support LeapFrog’s goal to extend essential services to 1 billion people by 2030.

“These three global leaders bring distinctive experience at the highest levels of financial services, healthcare, telecommunications, digital disruption and government relations – especially in Asia. Their insights and networks will be invaluable as LeapFrog continues to grow dozens of purpose-driven companies that are reshaping industries, countries and millions of lives,” said Dr Andrew Kuper, founder and CEO of LeapFrog Investments.

LeapFrog, whose backers include billionaire George Soros, has interests in healthcare and financial services businesses across 149 Asian and African markets.

The private equity firm, which has operations in Johannesburg, Singapore and the UK said that its companies currently reach 188 million people with healthcare or financial tools.

In May, LeapFrog Investments announced the largest-ever private equity fund by a dedicated impact fund manager, exceeding a $600-million target to mop up $700 million. The new fund will invest in healthcare and financial services companies.