Gautam Bhandari tapped to lead investment strategy at I Squared

Gautam Bhandari, Co-founder, Managing Partner and Global Chief Investment Officer of I Squared Capital
Gautam Bhandari, Co-founder, Managing Partner and Global Chief Investment Officer of I Squared Capital

I Squared Capital, one of the leading global infrastructure investment managers, announced that Gautam Bhandari, co-founder and Managing Partner, has been appointed as I Squared Capital’s Global Chief Investment Officer, responsible for leading the firm’s global investment strategy in close collaboration with founder, Chairman and Managing Partner Sadek Wahba.

This appointment is part of additional changes to its management and governance structure that will build on the firm’s success to further institutionalize I Squared Capital for the coming decade and beyond. In addition, I Squared Capital has named Mohamed Adel El-Gazzar and Harsh Agrawal as Senior Partners and members of the Executive Committee of the firm. The newly formed Executive Committee will lead the strategic development of the company.

In parallel, Adil Rahmathulla, Managing Partner, will be transitioning from his role at I Squared Capital over the coming year to pursue other opportunities. He will remain on the firm’s Investment Committees ahead of his eventual departure from the firm in June 2024.

What does Dr. Bhandari bring to his new role?

Dr. Bhandari has been a member of the Investment Committees of I Squared Capital since inception and he chairs the boards of several I Squared Capital portfolio companies globally. Prior to I Squared Capital, he was a Managing Director at Morgan Stanley where, for over ten years, he worked on infrastructure investments, as well as banking and capital markets.

Prior to starting the glorious career, Dr. Bhandari attained a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Delaware, where he was the University Merit Fellow and recipient of the Joel L. Silver Award for the best doctoral dissertation work, and an MBA in Finance from the Stern School of Business at New York University, where he was an Amerada Hess Merit Scholar.

I Squared Capital has formed an Operating Committee to manage its operations and to support the continued global growth of the platform. The committee will consist of the firm’s Partners along with a broader group of senior executives of I Squared Capital. The platform has grown to over 215 employees, having hired 81 professionals since the start of 2022.

“As I Squared continues to grow, I look forward to working with the Executive Committee to ensure that fundraises and investments are calibrated to the firm’s disciplined approach of investing in and building high-quality, world-class businesses for the future,” said Dr. Bhandari.

“We believe the demand for infrastructure will further grow globally as many capital-intensive sectors of the economy, like energy, telecommunications, and transportation urgently need to modernize and also address the ever-increasing demand for sustainable infrastructure.”

What do the appointments mean for I Squared?

Sadek Wahba, founder, Chairman and Managing Partner at I Squared Capital
Sadek Wahba, founder, Chairman and Managing Partner at I Squared Capital

Commenting on the appointment, Dr. Wahba, said,“These structural enhancements come at an important moment for I Squared. As we reflect on the tremendous success of the past decade, we are taking steps to further institutionalize our firm and ensure that we are well positioned to capitalize on the unique opportunities of the next decade and beyond.”

Commenting on Adil, Dr. Wahba and Dr. Bhandari said, “We are extremely grateful to Adil for the vital role he has played in co-founding and growing I Squared Capital. He has been a great partner, and we are pleased he will continue to work closely with us over the coming year. We are confident he will be successful in his future endeavors, and we wish him all the best.”

Commenting on his new role, Rahmathulla, said, “It has been a privilege to work alongside Sadek, Gautam and the I Squared Capital team to contribute to the firm’s growth into one of the world’s leading infrastructure investors. I am immensely proud of what we have achieved over the last decade and am excited to watch and support the firm’s continued success.”

“I am grateful to Sadek and Gautam for their partnership and friendship, and I look forward to continuing my journey as an investor and entrepreneur in the years ahead,” he added.

Also, over twenty senior employees, in addition to the existing shareholders, will be investing their capital into the equity ownership of I Squared Capital, further broadening the firm’s shareholder base and strengthening its interests. No financial details will be disclosed.