Raja Jandhyala is a founder and President of YAATRA Ventures, an investment platform that develops solutions for complex economic challenges and deploys capital in economic infrastructure investment opportunities critical to economic productivity and growth. Ms. Jandhyala has over 28 years of leadership experience in transitions; establishing, directing, and managing organizations, companies, and institutions to develop and implement policies and projects in national and sub-regional levels. She has provided strategic cutting-edge solutions in power, energy, financial services, health, agriculture, and education sectors.
Ms. Jandhyala is a highly respected leader, whose rare combination of diverse expertise in the public sector where she developed national security and economic development and strategies with her deep knowledge of investment risk-return profiles and delivery capabilities of the private sector. She established and currently leads the Albertine Graben Energy Consortium (AGEC) including Baker Hughes, YAATRA Africa, Saipem and others; as the Head/CEO of AGEC Ms. Jandhyala concluded an estimated $US 4.5 Billion Joint Equity Venture agreement with the Government of Uganda leading the East Africa Community. The initiative and investment aims secure energy security and transition objectives of the East Africa Community in shared infrastructure with significant economic impact for its population.
Ms. Jandhyala was the principal architect of the $7 billion presidential Power Africa initiative that sought to increase access to power in sub-Saharan Africa and became Presidential initiative. She founded and established the Private Capital Group for Africa and led the team with partnerships with J.P. Morgan, Citibank, Carlyle Group, Zephyr Capital Management, Cambridge Associates, Symbion Energy, and others to accelerate private investments in the power sector in Africa. The two initiatives led to the US government mobilizing and securing an estimated US $20 billion in private investment commitments towards G8/G20 Africa energy agenda.
Ms. Jandhyala was senior national security official in the President Obama Administration serving as Deputy Assistant Administrator for Africa in UAID) leading policy and investment strategies and managing day-to-day operations of more than USD $7 billion of US investments in Africa.
Prior to this, Ms. Jandhyala was a senior diplomat in the U.S. State Department, serving as Head of the Peace and Security for the President Obama’s Special Envoy to Sudan where she provided leadership to the US-led mediation on economic and security agreement negotiations between South Sudan (Juba) and Sudan (Khartoum) for the establishment of an independent South Sudan.
As a trained economist and public sector finance expert, she joined the World Bank, where she led investments with African governments to implement development goals in the ministries of finance, defense, health, education, agriculture, mines, and led the post-conflict recovery investments.
Following her time with the World Bank, she worked for over two decades in and with governments across Africa to plan, establish, and direct national security and economic strategies in the office of prime ministers and heads of state. She was negotiator and implemented cease-fire, disarmament, and peace agreements and managed crises fueled by political transitions and competition for natural resources. She held senior leadership, advisory and operations appointments within multiple African and non-African governments, including Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Sierra Leone, Uganda, Angola, Niger, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Liberia, and Cambodia. Ms. Jandhyala served at the African Union in the office of the President, as advisor and head of operations for the establishment of the Darfur peacekeeping operations and United Nations as senior advisor and head of the national security reforms for the transition in Democratic Republic of Congo in the office of Special Envoy.