The Vallis team, operating in the UK, across Africa and in the Middle East
Aatti's career began in 1987 by integrating an international inspection company's Moroccan branch. For 32 years he served in several positions and responsibilities that allowed a familiarisation with all the required techniques for leading professional inspection tasks.
He also intervened on behalf of many world-renowned trading companies and handled a very large number of products. Aatti joined Vallis in 2019 as General Manager in Morocco.
Alex grew up in South Africa where he completed a Master of Science degree at Rhodes University in Grahamstown before moving to Cape Town. Here he worked as a Senior Consultant in the High-Performance Centre at the Sports Science Institute of South Africa. In 2014 he moved to the UK and joined Vallis at the Vallis Group’s Head Office in Frome. He managed the Vallis Middle East and Fuels desk for 4 years and in 2018 moved to the role of Commercial Manager for East and Southern African operations.
Alice was born in New Zealand, but grew up and attended school in the UK in Wiltshire. She took a year out before university to travel New Zealand and to work as a counsellor at Camp Half Moon in America. Alice attended the University of Greenwich where she achieved a 1st class degree in Philosophy and Sociology. Alice joined Vallis Group in August 2014 as part of the Internal Audit team. When she has a free moment, she enjoys crochet.
Hi! My name is Amy and I was born and raised in Somerset. I am currently studying for a degree in law and criminology with The Open University and find it challenging but fun. I am a huge rugby fan and have a season ticket for Bath Rugby matches. When I’m not attending rugby games you’re likely to find me riding my horse, baking, socialising with my friends or attending music festivals. I also love to travel and have been many places over the world. I have spent a lot of time in Japan and China, and have even managed to pick up a little Japanese on my way.
After 7 years in the British Army, Andrew embarked on a career in commodities in 1987 starting with 5 years as a sugar broker in London, England.
In 1992 he moved with his family to Durban, South Africa for 6 years as Export Manager for the South African Sugar Association managing the export programme of $400 million, before returning to the UK as a Commercial Director in Tate & Lyle Sugar’s trading division. After two years, Andrew then became a founding member of the website and information portal www.sugaronline.com.
He set up and spent 5 years running his own private business supplying packaging to the international fruit industry, mainly for the transportation of citrus from Central/South America and Africa to Europe.
In 2005, Andrew started the drive of the Vallis Group into Africa with its first CMA in Ghana and Mali. Since then, the company has grown to over 325 monthly operations managed through its 30 subsidiaries with operational units in a further 12 countries.
Since 2005, the Vallis Group has managed 40 million tonnes, equating to a value of approximately $25 billion, for more than 90 different commodities. It has 700 directly employed staff.
Andrew is the Managing Director and a minority shareholder. He is married with two children and lives in England. His main interests are Tottenham Hotspur football club, international politics, and endurance sporting events.
Anton is a dual French-British National who grew up in Spain and South Africa. He moved to Marseilles in 2010 to study International Business and Management at Kedge Business School and furthered his studies at Newcastle University in the UK and John Molson Business School in Montreal.
After working in the commercial inspections industry and the renewable energy sector in South Africa, Anton relocated to the UK in December 2015 which led to him joining the Vallis Group.
Anton now heads the Vallis Francophone West Africa team, putting his French roots and international background to good use. When he is not at work, Anton can be found riding (and repairing) his motorcycles.
I grew up in Islamabad Pakistan, after finishing my school I studied mechanical engineering at the University of Engineering & Technology Peshawar, due to some financial issues I couldn’t complete my graduation and it led me to UAE in 2011 to look for a job, where I worked with Etisalat one the Telecom provider as an outsourcing staff from August 2011 to February 2016, where I worked as an acting officer procurement.
I joined Vallis in May 2016 as a shipping and cargo controller, I love to play cricket and in my free time I enjoy reading books.
Balal grew up in Manama, completing his higher secondary in Commerce at the Pakistan Urdu School. He went on to gain a BSc degree in Marketing & Management from the University of Bahrain. Since this, he has worked in various different fields including sales, accounts, HR, Management and Marketing. Balal joined Vallis Group in September 2014 as a supervisor at the Arabian Sugar Company refinery, progressing within a few months to Operations Manager. He likes travelling and exploring new places, and enjoys spending free time with his family and friends.
Currently living in Somerset, Brogan was born and raised in Dundee, Scotland. After completing Higher Education and receiving an overall A at Dundee College in 2014 for Social Sciences, Brogan left Dundee to go travelling for the next two years. In that time, she worked and lived in many countries including: Asia, Thailand, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand and Bali. Returning back to Dundee Scotland near the end of 2016, Brogan worked for a global petroleum pump company where she managed engineers in installing and maintaining petroleum pumps throughout the UK. In early 2018, Brogan made the move down to Somerset, and joined the Vallis team as an Operations and Reporting Assistant in the Franco West African team, to then shortly be moved to the Anglo West African team. Now living in Somerset Brogan enjoys spending time with friends, exploring the country side and travelling.
Cathy Gilmore started with Vallis Group in July 2019 and enjoy working with such friendly people.
Cathy loves to learn new things and as such, she has chosen to study an Open Degree with the Open University. Cathy is learning Korean and German in her spare time and when she needs to relax, she plays PC games. Cathy is a grade 6 pianist and prefers Jazz piano but has learned mostly classical pieces. Cathy also plays accordion from time to time.
Charles spent his early years between the Ivory Coast and the UK, before moving out to the Philippines to complete his secondary education. After studying the International Baccalaureate at the British School of Manila, Charles read Geography with Quantitative Research Methods at the University of Bristol, graduating with a BSc honours (2.1). Charles’ interest in commodities and emerging markets drew him to Vallis Group Limited in June 2015. Originally a member of the West Africa team, Charles is now the Commercial Manager for Marine and Cargo Services. Charles spends his free time playing football and tennis and is an avid scuba diver whenever he finds the opportunity.
After his tertiary education in business studies, Charles worked with Uganda Electricity Distribution Company (Umeme Ltd) from 2006 to 2010. Charles joined Vallis in December 2010 as a Stock Control Monitor at Ugacof which is the leading coffee exporter in Uganda. Due to his hard work, he was promoted to Warehouse Supervisor in November 2013. Charles was transferred to Tanzania where he worked as a Stock Control Consultant in Morogoro and Dodoma from November 2013 and October 2014, where he watched over the operations of Export Trading Group (ETG). He went back to Uganda from October 2014 to April 2015 to work as a Site Operations Supervisor at ETG and Joseph Initiative Site. In June 2017, Charles was transferred to Rwanda, and has been working since then as a Country Supervisor. Charles has a passion for sports, especially football both locally and internationally, and he is a fan of SC Villa (Uganda) and Chelsea FC (UK). He is a family man with a lovely 8-year-old daughter.
Charlie was born in Rome to French-British parents and moved to Luxembourg where she attended the European School then completed her secondary education in the UK where graduated with a European Baccalaureate. Charlie went onto to study a joint degree in Spanish and Russian at the University of Bristol for which she spent half a year working in Seville and the other half studying in St Petersburg. After graduating from Bristol, Charlie trained as a teacher of English as a foreign language and moved to London where she taught in a number of international language schools and universities as an English language teacher.
After several years working as a teacher, Charlie decided to study an MA in Education, Gender and International Development at the Institute of Education in London. This was followed by a seven-month internship at the International Institute for Education Planning in Paris working on education in emergency programmes. Charlie then returned to London and worked as an institutional fundraiser for several international development NGOs, including Wateraid and Water and Sanitation for the Urban Poor. During this time, Charlie travelled to Mali and Zambia to deliver fundraising workshops. After three years working in international development, Charlie moved to Colombia for three years working as an education specialist for an English language learning programme set up by the Ministry of Education in Colombia, training teachers of English and improving the English language curriculum in public schools.
Charlie returned to the UK two years ago, with a brief period living in the US in between, to work as a Tour Director for Education First Tours taking large groups of North American tourists around Ireland, the UK and France before joining Vallis in July 2019.
Charlie’s passions include women’s rights, education and all things relating to performance and visual arts (dance, theatre, photography and film). As well as travelling to several countries in Africa and Asia, Charlie’s main travel experience has been in Central and South America. Charlie also speaks fluent French and Spanish.
Chris-Johan was born at Parakou (North of Benin) and grew up at Cotonou. After his secondary school in Mechanical system design drawing, he obtained the baccalaureate followed by one year of language study holidays in English at Accra ( Ghana) in 2004.
In 2005 he moved to Dakar (Senegal) where he continued his university studies with a High National Diploma in Administrative Data Processing, a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Information Technology followed by a master’s degree in Data Transmission and Information Security at University Cheikh Anta Diop of Dakar.
In 2012, after working as a freelancer during two years, Chris-Johan was training on flight dispatcher program following by a professional internship as Flight Coordinator at Dakar International Airport Leopold Sédar Senghor.
Chris-Johan joined Vallis in November 2013 for Morocco’s Operations but finally stayed in Senegal as Operations Supervisor.
Chris-Johan is married and loves watching movies, walking and sings in a choir. He is also currently studying a part-time Master’s degree in Business Intelligence.
Ciaran spent his early years living in Twickenham before moving to France, where he joined a local French school. After moving to Wiltshire he attended Nottingham Trent University where he read French & International Relations achieving a 2:1 with Distinction in Spoken French.
After university, he spent time saving money in order to travel around Vietnam by motorbike. In his free time, he enjoys going to the gym, playing pool and rowing.
Commencing his professional life enlisting into the British Army in 1988, Darren went on to enjoy a full and successful career spanning 22 years. During his varied military service, he undertook multiple world-wide deployments, including Afghanistan, Kosovo, Northern Ireland and Bosnia-Herzegovina. Particular highlights included being selected for Military Diplomatic Service within the British Embassy to the Republic of Albania and the design and delivery of training to the Armed Forces of Sierra Leone. Darren concluded his military career at NATO’s highest operational command, the Supreme Headquarters in Mons, Belgium. During the latter years of service, he participated in and led several audit requirements within both the operational and financial spheres and later qualified as a BSi Internal Auditor for ISO 9001:2008. Returning to Sierra Leone, Darren joined an international mining operation, initially employed as the Project Administration Manager. Responsible for all administrative and human resource matters for construction personnel across the multi-site location, he developed a tailored administrative and HR function incorporating internal audit requirements, both ahead of schedule and within budget. Darren joined Vallis Group Limited in August 2013 and leads the team of regional internal auditors, whilst retaining pan-African responsibility.
Dave spent 24 years in the British army completing his service as a stores and logistics manager. Moving into the oil and gas industry, Dave spent several years working in offshore subsea construction, again in a stores and logistics capacity.
A move into the petrochemical industry saw Dave employed as the production manager for an engineering company manufacturing pipe fitting and flanges.
Joining Vallis in January 2011, Dave was employed as the Country Manager for Nigeria to oversee the considerable growth of the company throughout West Africa. Appointed to the board of directors as Managing Director of Vallis Nigeria in March of 2011. Dave assisted in establishing operations in both Benin and Togo as well as supporting operations in Liberia, Senegal, Cameroon and Ghana.
In November 2014, Dave moved to Bahrain to establish company operations there before moving on to Egypt as the director of operation in February 2015.
November 15 saw Dave move back to West Africa to take over as Country Manager in Ghana.
In January 2019 Dave assumed his current position as Country Manager of Liberia.
Dudley Smith joined Vallis Group Limited in March 2013 as the Operational Risk Manager. In April 2016 he was appointed to the Vallis Board as a Director. The first 4 years of Dudley’s working life were as a fish farmer in Scotland and subsequently Ireland where he managed one of the largest trout hatcheries in the UK at the time. A career change to the printing industry was to be interspersed by a short period in the British Army, but this ended up as 32 years, which he completed in early 2013. Dudley specialized in information and communications management after completing a Masters’ course in Advanced Information Systems in 2005. He managed several major Defence projects and advised on a host of others. Latterly, Dudley was a programme manager for a wide range of office and frontline projects in his portfolio. Dudley is married to Oksana and they live in Dorset with their ferrets, Frazer and Walker.
Hi, I’m Emma. I live in Frome with my husband and two children. I have lived in and around Frome for over 20 years, having moved here from Kent. As a family, we are keen campers and enjoy spending weekends away in our camper van. I joined Vallis in January 2019 and am excited to learn new things and travel.
Emmanuel is one of Nigeria’s most eminent businessmen with very extensive connections across the banking, finance and political spectrums. He has previously worked closely with President Goodluck Jonathan on the power requirements for the country. He is head of the finance committee for the privatisation of the telecoms industry, shares conference platforms with the Governor of the Reserve Bank and represents Nigeria on overseas delegations to such countries as the United States. Emmanuel was born in 1946 and his education took him from Lagos to Ijebu Ode, Cameroon and the UK. He started his accounting career in 1965 with Coopers & Lybrand and set up his own company as a chartered accountant in 1979. His Chairmanships are numerous: Best Foods Group, Drum Resources Nigeria Limited, Apel Capital & Trust Limited and Countrywide Direct Mortgage Company. He was past Chairman of Longman Nigeria PLC, Petra Microfinance Bank, Salus Health Trust Management and CSN Investment Concepts Limited being some the leading ones. His National Assignments have included Chairmanships of the Agriculture and Food Security Commission and the Modified Value Added Tax Committee. He is a member of the National Economic Forum, the International Investment Council (HIIC), Agricultural Transformation Implementation Council (ATIC), Technical Committee on the Privatisation of Federal Government Companies and Parastatals. We are very honoured to have such a highly respected individual as the Chairman of Drum Resources Nigeria Limited.
My name is Franci Tuck and I am the Operations and Reporting Assistant responsible for South Africa, Madagascar and Mauritius. I matriculated in South Africa in 1985 and come with a wide background in office administration and have completed a course in graphic design. I emigrated from South Africa with my (English) husband, David and our son, Michael in 2007 and have been enjoying the splendour of the English Countryside ever since. In my spare time I enjoy baking and entertaining friends and family, am a keen rugby and cricket supporter and enjoy exploring the beautiful nature around us.
After completing a course in purchasing and supply, Geoffrey joined Unilever South East Africa then Lever Brothers as warehouse supervisor. Geoffrey joined National Food Reserve Agency 2004 where he worked as Depot supervisor and quality assurance officer. Before he joined Vallis Group Limited in 2013, Geoffrey was assistant regional manager for NFRA. He is currently the Country Manager for Vallis Malawi operations.
George grew up and went to school in Kent, studying Politics, History and English for A-Level. Between school and university, he travelled to Kenya, Australia and New Zealand. He studied at Leeds Met university, gaining a 2.1 in International Relations and Global Development. During his summers between university he travelled extensively and the opportunity to travel with Vallis and its operations across Africa drew him to the company. George joined Vallis in February 2016 as part of the East African team reporting on Malawi. George spends his free-time playing tennis, skiing and travelling.
Ginnie moved from France to Somerset as she joined Vallis Group in April 2019, as part of the West Africa team. She studied English and Spanish at the University of Western Brittany and used to work as an administrative assistant in France.
After spending several years travelling and working in New Zealand, U.A.E and Australia, she decided to move to the UK permanently. During those years, she had a variety of jobs such as pizza maker, hotel receptionist, flight attendant and assistant buyer for a sports company. She has a passion for exploring the world and working with people from different countries. Therefore, she was attracted to the exciting opportunity to work with Vallis Group.
During her free time, Ginnie enjoys going to the gym, exploring her new surroundings and eating way too much chocolate.
Godfrey was born in Gweru, Zimbabwe. He studied at Fort Victoria High School in Masvingo, Zimbabwe where he completed his O’levels. Following this Godfrey started working at Shabani Mine and qualified as an Overseer Miner and progressed through the ranks to Foreman in Mining and Shaft Inspection Foreman. In 2005 Godfrey joined Sasfuel as the Depot Manager in Victoria Falls and when the company liquidated he moved onto Exploration Drilling in Zambia and Zimbabwe. Godfrey joined Vallis in November 2015 as a fuel manager, and he is currently based in Liberia. In his free time Godfrey enjoys fishing, motor sports, snooker, rugby, and cricket.
Grant grew up and studied in Monmouth, South Wales, achieving A levels in English Literature, History and Psychology. After leaving school, he attended the University of Bath and graduated in 2016 with a 2.1 in Politics with International Relations. Immediately after finishing finals, he undertook an internship in the operations department at Etherlive, helping to build communication networks for some of the most prestigious events in the UK and France. In May 2017, Grant joined the Anglo West Africa team reporting on Liberia. Grant spends his free time Djing, producing music and supporting Swansea City FC.
Hamid served as Team Leader under the United Nations at Umm Qasr, a vital and strategic port in Iraq to ensure compliance after the Gulf war.
He went on to begin inspection operations to Dubai. Here he and his team inspected cargo from various international suppliers and also conducted “on –sea” inspections. For the last 9 years, Hamid has been living in South Africa conducting pre-shipment inspections.
Hamid has worked in over 45 countries and brings a wealth of inspection expertise to Vallis.
His spare time is spent enjoying football and following Formula 1.
Hayden was born and brought up in Durban, South Africa. Soon after graduating from Durban High School in 2012, he went on to pursue a degree in Finance and Economics. After graduating, he started working in Quality Control at a company in the Automotive industry. Keen to find something more fast-paced and interesting, he discovered Vallis Group. Shortly after, he joined the Vallis team in Durban, as a VTAS Operations and Reporting Assistant. Hayden is an avid sports fan, his hobbies including Rugby, Fishing, Soccer, and Cricket.
Helen grew up in the local area, although, her parents and wider family are Irish. Following a career in Category Marketing & Supply Chain within Retail and FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods), she wanted a change in direction. Helen joined Vallis because of its uniqueness as a multicultural business and the opportunities to work with many countries in Africa. She is particularly drawn to the logistics reporting she has been doing for humanitarian organisations and sees her role as a great opportunity to learn and grow within a very interesting organisation. In her spare time, Helen enjoys camping and cycling, and has experienced a few road trips to Belgium and Italy to watch Formula 1.
After studying Sports Science at Liverpool John Moores University, Isaac spent 18 months travelling in Asia and worked in mining exploration in Australia. On returning to the UK he worked for a year in the head office of Asda on their graduate scheme as a merchandise planner. He then enjoyed a successful 7 years’ service in the Royal Engineers where he left as a captain. He was trained as an army commando and diver and commanded soldiers on combat engineering operations in Afghanistan in 2014. Isaac has travelled extensively, he speaks advanced Spanish and has a passion for Skydiving and Mountaineering. Isaac joined Vallis Group in June 2018 to take on the role of Country Manager, Sierra Leone.
Jack was born and grew up in the east of England before moving to Burgundy with his family until 18 where he learnt French. He later settled on Bath University in the UK where he completed a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry. Jack joined Vallis in August 2018 as he was looking to make use of both his French language and analytical skills acquired at university to find a job that would be stimulating and fresh. In his spare time, Jack can be found wargaming, playing Handball and cross-country running.
Jack attended Welbeck Army 6th College where he gained both military training and academic qualifications. Upon completion, he changed course and after a brief spell as a chef, moved into the publishing industry, working for Parragon Publishing based in Bath. Starting as a Junior Production Coordinator he worked his way up to Senior Project Controller, coordinating the publication of over 1,000 titles including the prestigious Beano Annual along the way. Working with major licensees such as Disney and Nickelodeon, and with people from all over the globe, Jack developed a thirst for international business. Jack joined Vallis Group in November 2013 and enjoys focusing on the African market, having dealt primarily with the Asian market in print. Originally working as Commercial Manager for West Africa, he then spent 2 years as the Country Manager of Egypt before returning to the UK to take up the position of Commercial Manager for the Fuel and MENA markets. In his spare time, Jack enjoys watching motorsports such as F1 and BTCC.
James was born in Cyprus and spent his childhood relocating around Europe, forming an appetite for travel and adventure that grew into adulthood. Since becoming a teenager, the New Forest became home. A devotion to sport supplemented by a healthy lifestyle complemented the natural surroundings. After studying Environmental Engineering at Cardiff University, James pursued a love for snowsports by working as a ski instructor in Austria for two seasons. He then went on to complete a Masters in International Business and Development at Birkbeck before focusing on his career.
Joe grew up in Totnes, Devon and subsequently studied English Literature, Geography and World Development in the city of Exeter. He joined the Vallis Group as Compliance and Finance Assistant midway through 2018, having graduated in the same year with a 2.1 Bachelor of Science from Brunel University London after reading International Politics, subsequently receiving full Honours. Outside of work, he writes for his own political commentary website focussed on reflecting on historical political theory and its relevance in modern day political climate. Joe is also an avid outdoorsman, having overcome challenges such as Dartmoor’s Ten Tors.
JJ grew up in Cape Town, South Africa and attended the University of Cape Town, where he completed a Bachelor of Commerce degree in Accounting. Having completed his degree, JJ played professional rugby in South Africa and Italy. JJ represented the USA in Rugby Union from 2008 to 2011 and in 2011 participated in the 2011 Rugby World Cup. In 2013, JJ moved to the UK with his wife. He joined Vallis in their Head Office in December 2013. He managed the East Africa desk for 4.5 years and in July 2018 moved across to lead Vallis Supply Chain Assurance Services.
Justus was born and raised in Makueni County, Kenya. After his primary and secondary education, Justus went on to pursue his college education in Mombasa, where he graduated with a Certificate in Business Management. Justus worked with various companies in Mombasa as a Marine and Cargo Surveyor before joining Vallis in 2009 as a Warehouse Assistant where he has risen through the ranks to become the Country Manager in Kenya. He has served Vallis in different capacities including warehouse inspections, audits, warehousing and Marine and Cargo Services across Mombasa, Nairobi, and Kigali. Justus is happily married and blessed with one child.
Originally from London, Kate graduated from the University of Bath in July 2017 where she studied French and Italian with European Studies. As part of her studies, Kate spent a year in Europe during which she worked in Geneva and studied at Sapienza University in Rome. Following a further two months working in the South of France and Parma, Kate returned to the South West where she joined Vallis as part of the West Africa team. Kate enjoys travelling, running and climbing.
Kenny grew up in Arbroath, Scotland where he played semi-professional football with Arbroath Victoria FC and started his engineering career with Haliburton. He oversaw design and technical aspects of the operations before moving from the shore to sea, taking his engineering experience to the oil rigs in the Scottish North Sea and further afield to Perth, Australia. His work on the rigs was interspersed will spells educating underprivileged children in South-East Asia and football coaching in the USA.
He moved to Vallis in October 2017 where he is currently working as an operations manager in the UAE.
Prior to joining Vallis Group in August 2016, Kenny enjoyed a full career in the British Army. In addition to serving on operational deployments around the world, he also spent two and a half years in America as the Training Officer teaching tactics to American officers and soldiers. Since leaving the army in 2012, he has found new adventures running a marine conservation centre in Montserrat for a year, supervising and assessing Duke of Edinburgh training, as well as leading numerous expeditions to South East Asia, North and East Africa. Kenny is relishing his role as an Internal Auditor and is looking forward to doing even more work in Africa. In addition to being a CIPD qualified Training Needs Analysis (TNA) practitioner, he is also a Skiing and Diving Instructor and qualified Mountain Leader. In his spare time Kenny enjoys trekking in the mountains, kayaking and Canadian open boat canoeing; he is also learning French (very slowly)!
Kevin was born in Kasama, Zambia (Northern Rhodesia at the time). He went to school in Kasama and then Broken Hill (Kabwe). Having also served his apprenticeship as a Motor Vehicle Technician in Zambia, Kevin considers himself a wholly Zambian product. In July 1977 Kevin started up a trucking company with his brothers. From the humble beginnings of 3 units, it grew to a fleet of 150 trucks, all running international routes from South Africa to as far north as Uganda. He retired in 2012 and led a busy life cooking and shopping while his wife Glenys ran her own accounting. They enjoy birdwatching and take every opportunity to disappear into the African bush when they get the chance. Kevin and Glenys have 11 children between them, some adopted, and a further 11 grandchildren with the 12th due to arrive in December. Their children live in Ireland, England, South Africa, Australia and Zambia - so holidays have now become visiting family members. With Vallis expanding in Zambia, Glenys was approached by Don Oliphant to handle the Payroll and Administration of the Zambian office. This led to the discovery that Kevin too was available for work and a phone call soon followed, offering the chance for Kevin to look after the Ndola operation in Zambia.
Kieran was born in Durban, South Africa, where she attended school and University. Her love for sporting activities, especially on the hockey field, gained her a place in the Junior South African team as well as many other Provincial sports' teams. Kieran worked in the steel industry for 8 years, 3.5 of which were spent in Johannesburg. In December 2017, Kieran, her husband, and their 3-year-old little boy moved to the UK. She joined the Vallis head office in February 2018 as the Compliance Manager.
Kilian is from the North West region of Cameroon, born in 1981 into the family of Mr Ngwainmbi Joseph. He is now married with two children. After obtaining his advanced Technician Diploma in tendering estimating, quantity surveying and construction management in 2003, Kilian gained employment as a Senior Technician/Quantity Estimator at the Cameroon Baptist Convention. In 2010, Kilian obtained an industrial safety Diploma from Natalien Cameroon and continued his services with the Cameroon Baptist Convention health services as a Senior Technician and Procurement Officer. In 2012, Kilian was promoted as the Principal of a National apprenticeship and vocational training Centre in Cameroon (under the Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services) where he worked for one year and later decided to go for a more challenging job before joining Vallis Group Ivory Coast Limited as a reporter and administrative assistant in November 2013. Kilian was later appointed as Operations Supervisor in January 2015,
Lara was born and raised in Germany within a Forces environment. From the age of 11, she attended Boarding School in Lancashire and finally attended Newcastle University to study Psychology. She embarked upon a career in Palliative Pharmacy supporting recovering addicts. Lara has over the past 12 years progressed through the various branches of the pharmaceutical industry, eventually settling in the logistics of cold chain pharmaceutical products to patients in the home. Lara also has some experience in marketing, and ready for a new challenge, Lara joined Vallis in March 2019 as part of the New Services team. Having embraced a range of cultures and traveled frequently throughout her life she was attracted to the exciting prospect of working with Vallis and helping them grow. She moved to Bruton, Somerset with her family whereupon she found a keen interest in walking with her dogs and loves to be outdoors in the countryside. Her favorite place to walk so far has been Glen Coe. She enjoys healthy eating and learning new recipes. She has renovated her own house and has developed a love of designing interior spaces. She is also a keen oil painter and enjoys live music and comedy.
Leonard was born and grew up in Tanzania, where he studied Business Administration at the University of Dodoma. After graduating, he worked as a Trainee Loan Officer at Access Bank Tanzania for a year. Leonard joined Vallis Tanzania in 2014, and has since held various positions, amongst which: Senior Warehouse Supervisor, Fuel Supervisor, and most recently, Country Supervisor for Madagascar. In his spare time, Leonard enjoys listening to music and playing and watching football.
Matt has lived in Dorset his entire life and recently graduated from the University of the West of England with a First in Human Geography. He was attracted to Vallis because of the prospect of working in international finance and dealing with physical commodities. Capital markets are his passion and he thoroughly enjoys trying to understand the global macroeconomic environment as well as micro economic equity analysis. He also enjoys travelling and experiencing alternative cultures and climates whether that be an expedition across China, an adrenaline fuelled ski trip or business travel in Africa. In his free time, Matt enjoys reading and going to be the gym, being a firm believer in the healthy body, healthy mind philosophy.
Matthew grew up in Zimbabwe and South Africa and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of South Africa. He has worked extensively in the agricultural and petroleum trading industries in Southern Africa.
In 2019 he moved to the UK to join Vallis in the Marine and Cargo division at the group’s Head Office in Frome. In his spare time, he enjoys fly fishing and cycling.
Maya studied in Southampton, graduating in 2016 with a Media, Culture and Production degree.She spent the summer of 2017 summer working in America as a camp counsellor, before returning to her home town of Trowbridge where she joined Vallis as an Operations and Reporting Assistant as part of the East Africa team. In her spare time, Maya loves travelling, live music and drawing.
Mazin is an electrical engineering graduate from the University of Khartoum. After graduating, he worked as a planning engineer in a petroleum company, and then moved into the supply chain field. He pursued an MBA at the University of Khartoum, after which he worked in DAL Group's different business units for 7 years. His roles included operations management and supply chain management, specialising in procurement, logistics and warehousing. His last role was Procurement and Supply Chain Planning Supervisor at DAL Dairy factory.
Meshak lives in Abidjan and attended secondary school in Lycee Municipal de Port-Bouet and got the baccalaureate diploma. He also attended a private higher school in Plateau Abidjan and graduated with a higher technician certificate in 2010. He started to work in a warehouse where they sell second hand equipment, locally known as “France Au Revoir” before being trained and becoming a forklift driver at Ets Koussis Company. During Vallis's first operations in Cote d’Ivoire, he worked as forklift driver, discharging stock from trucks. He then was promoted to Assistant Supervisor at Vallis in March 2013. In August 2014, Meshak became one of Vallis's West Africa internal auditors and is now Vallis Operations Manager for the Ivory Coast.
Mike was born and raised in Zimbabwe. During his schooling, he enjoyed his sports; he played provincial rugby, water polo and squash. After school, he played club/provincial ruby and water polo. Mike started his career in the IT industry. In 2007, he made the decision to move to the DRC to start a new career within the fuel industry. This is where he joined SAS Fuel as the Lubricants Sales Manager. Within a year, he became the Fuel Depot Manager in Lubumbashi. In 2011, he joined one of Glencore's mines (Mutanda), where he became the Fuel Operations Superintendent. He assisted with the erection of their fuel depot of 3,000 MT and fire suppression system. He was very involved in community projects, as well as being the captain of one of their Firefighting and Emergency response teams. In the 9 years of being based in Congo, Mike learnt the local language (Swahili), built some long lasting friendships and gained qualifications in Logistics, Supply Chain and Fuel operations. Mike joined Vallis in July 2017 as the Country Manager for Tanzania. He hopes to travel more and experience different cultures across the globe. In his free time, he enjoys fishing, gym, squash, golf and rugby.
Natasha grew up in Wiltshire and graduated from The University of Exeter with a BSc Anthropology and Psychology and Politics. Natasha has recently returned from traveling and working in Australia, Asia, and New Zealand. She has a passion for exploring the world and has spent many of her University summers traveling abroad, including her third year of University in Ottawa, Canada. She has volunteered in Tanzania for 2 months, working for a grassroots company teaching street children vital business skills as well as visiting local villages providing maternal health advice. She would love to return to climb Mount Kilimanjaro successfully. She joined Vallis in February 2019, as part of the West Africa team.
After full time education Nicola pursued furthering her career gaining qualifications in business administration which plunged her straight into an editorial role within the newspaper industry. Nicola spent several years within administration, which also included time spent as assistant to the CEO at The Patent Office. Eventually, deciding on a career within finance, Nicola has worked in various accounting roles at Barclays Bank and in the manufacturing industry leading on to her present role in the Finance team at Vallis Group Limited.
Born in Bradford in Yorkshire, Ollie moved down to Somerset when he was very young and has lived here ever since. He attended Plymouth University, graduating with a 2:1 in International Relations with Politics in 2019.
In his spare time, Ollie enjoys cooking and watching rugby, supporting Bath and England. He is also an avid walker, completing a charity walk of the Offa’s Dyke path in Wales in 2016 to raise money for Raleigh International, a charity he volunteered with in Malaysian Borneo for 10 weeks. He also enjoys traveling and would like to explore Africa and South America next.
Owen grew up in Holt, Wiltshire and went on to study for a BSc in Sports Science from Swansea University, graduating with a 2:1. Following this, he remained in Swansea to complete a Master of Science by Research degree in biomechanics.
Following his studies, Owen worked for a publishing company based in Bristol, writing a variety of educational resources for schools and colleges. Owen then joined Vallis in 2018 as an Operations and Reporting Assistant, in the Middle East and Fuels team.
Outside of work, Owen enjoys playing squash and local rugby. He supports Cardiff City FC.
Pythagore graduated from the University of Abomey Calavi in 2012 with a degree in Economics.
After graduating, he worked at the Ministry of Development in Economic Analysis and Foresight, in Benin. Here, Pythagore received training in strategic planning and macroeconomic management, which led to him receiving a diploma from the National School of Economics.
In January 2014, he was assigned to the Ministry of Economy and Finance of Benin as a Macro-economist. Pythagore’s main role was to provide analysis and forecasting for the economic situation in the Directorate General of Economic Affairs (GAAR).
With an interest in Supply Chain Management, Pythagore joined Vallis Benin in July 2014 as Assistant Supervisor, before becoming Senior Supervisor in April 2017. He moved over to Vallis Togo in May 2018 where he took on the role of Country Supervisor. Since then he has been managing all the Vallis operations in Togo.
In his spare time, Pythagore enjoys spending time with his friends at the gym and has a keen interest in reading and travelling.
Rebecca joined Vallis Group in November 2018 and enjoys working with Africa, having previously supported Europe, the Middle East and Asia, whilst working in the Financial Services industry. She has a keen interest for international business and enjoys working with people around the world. Rebecca and her husband live locally with their young daughter and two demanding cats. In the little spare time she has, Rebecca enjoys watching a variety of films and TV shows, with a particular love for Anime.
Robert O. Ijewere is an entrepreneur with over ten years of professional experience primarily in private equity and investment management in Nigeria. He has served on the boards of many companies in a variety of sectors from IT, Trade, Agriculture, Food Servicing and Real Estate. Robert is the Managing director of Emson (Group) Nigeria, a private equity company that currently holds controlling interests in 9 distinct Nigerian companies as well as minority shareholdings across several varying industries. Robert has worked and travelled extensively across Africa, the Americas and Europe. After graduating from the University of Richmond in Virginia, he joined The Cochran Firm, one of the premiere law firms in Washington D.C. as legal counsel in their contracts division. He then went into Real Estate, working with Foxtons of London. Following this, he joined JD Capital, a Private Equity/Venture Capitalist firm in Nigeria where as the VP of business development, he focused on investment opportunities in the marine, oil and gas as well as real estate sectors in West Africa before finally joining Emson in 2008.
Sarah grew up in a village just outside of Frome and once she achieved her A-Levels, she threw herself into work. After a charity hiking trip to The Great Wall of China, Sarah decided to go travelling and booked a one-way ticket to New Zealand via South-East Asia, where she lived in Wellington for 2 years and worked as a Retail Manager. On her return to Frome, she started studying towards her AAT Accountancy Qualification and began working in Finance for a small local company.
Sarah joined the team in January 2017 after looking for a more diverse and challenging role, where she could put her studies into practice and broaden her skills. In her spare time, Sarah enjoys walking and camping and can be found in Devon or Cornwall at any opportunity, where she has recently started to learn to surf.
For her A-Levels, Sophie studied Mathematics, Business Studies, IT and Psychology at Writhlington school. She then went on to complete the AAT Accountancy Qualification and worked in a local accountancy practice as a Junior Accountant. Sophie joined Vallis Group in March 2018 as Budget Coordinator. In her free time Sophie enjoys going to the gym and socialising with her friends.
Stephen Emeka grew up Nigeria and studied French at CEBLAE Abomey Calavi University in Benin. Upon graduating in 2010 he worked as a Project Manager at target Builders in Nigeria.
Stephen later returned to Benin and joined Vallis in 2013 as an Assistant Supervisor and was subsequently promoted to Operations Manager and Country Manager for Vallis Benin in 2018.
Looking for a change in direction Steve left a career as a plumbing and heating engineer and joined the R.A.F. in 1995. As a logistician Steve specialized in the construction and operation of tactical field fuel installations in support of the battlefield helicopter force. This was a role that saw him operate in Bosnia, Afghanistan, Northern Ireland, Holland and Norway. After leaving the R.A.F. in 2012 Steve worked as a logistics manager for an Australian underground mining company in Ghana. Steve joined the Vallis fuel team in 2014.
Steve Noble spent 23-years in the British Army serving on operational deployments in Iraq, Afghanistan and West Africa. It would be the latter which formed most of his early career before leaving the military in 2010.
Steve was employed in several risk management and liaison roles within the onshore marine expeditionary industry. More recently, Steve worked as a Property Manager for a large apartment property portfolio in Leeds before joining Vallis in 2019.
Steve studied a degree in Engineering at the University of Liverpool. He went on to pursue a career in accountancy and qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Kidsons Impey in Birmingham in 1993. He left practice in 1994 and furthered his accountancy career as Financial Controller and Finance Director in a variety of businesses in sectors including plastics, food, further education and textiles. In 1996 Steve moved to Somerset following a Management Buy In of a manufacturing business in Frome. He left accountancy in 2011 and qualified as a teacher of mathematics. After a brief spell teaching the AAT accountancy qualification Steve joined Vallis Group in March 2015 as Finance Manager. He has a German Shepherd called Lily and is a keen supporter of Aston Villa FC.
Tabuh Cyprain was born in Douala, Cameroon. After obtaining his A-Levels, he went to study Economics Sciences at the University of Yaoundé II - SOA, he later on specialised in Banking and Finance and obtained the Higher National Diploma (HND) at Ecole Superieur de Gestion (ESG) in 2010.
Since completing his education, he has gained experience in banking, marketing, accounting and administration. He worked as an intern at First Trust Savings and loans S.A. as a Marketer at EYES Sarl, then as Assistant Accountant at SCESCO Sarl and in 2013 as Assistant Office Administrator at AC Nielsen Cameroon.
He joined Vallis in 2015 as Operations and Reporting Administrator, and is now the Business Administrator for Cameroon, while still being responsible for reporting.
He loves playing football, watching movies, listening to music and spending time with his children on weekends.
Having grown up in Somerset and the surrounding area, Tom chose to do a degree in International Business from the University of Plymouth, a 4 year course comprising of a variety of modules. This gave him the ability to take a one year study placement in New Hampshire, United States. Whilst at University Tom built up a keen interest in the Middle East and North Africa, focussing his dissertation on the Arab Spring, and its effect on trade and business. Tom Joined Vallis Group in November 2014 in a role focussing on Egyptian market, which enabled Tom to further his understanding of the MENA region. Tom is a keen skier who also has a passion for travel and understanding and integrating into new cultures.
Tony was born in Kwekwe, and grew up in Zimbabwe. When finishing school he worked as a tractor mechanic before moving to work in the pumps and irrigation industry. In 2006, Tony started his career in petroleum products operations and management with Sasfuel & Chem in Beit Bridge, Zimbabwe. The following year he relocated to the DRC with Sasfuel, where he managed a terminal supplying petroleum products to a large copper mine. Tony joined Vallis in 2012 as one of the fuel operations managers. He has since managed Vallis fuel operations in Kenya, Tanzania and Liberia.
Victoria joined Vallis in March 2019, moving away from sales and looking for a new challenge. Originally from the Midlands, Victoria moved south to attend university in Bristol and decided to stay. Victoria’s degree was in Forensic Science with an emphasis on Organic Chemistry and Environmental Forensics. Whilst at university Victoria was a keen Trampolinist and competed at a National level. In her spare time, Victoria likes to spend time at the gym, spending time with her dogs and watching rugby. She is also unable to function without caffeine.