Our People

12Tree Team EUROPE

Richard Focken

Over the past 20 years 12Tree CEO Richard Focken has held several management positions with international companies. Until 2001, he was a member of the board at the US software company TIBCO, which he helped establish in Europe. Richard then co-founded CAPCO Germany, which provides strategic and consulting services for major banks and stock exchanges, serving as Managing Partner. Ten years ago Richard started focusing on how the economy can mitigate the impacts of climate change. As a result he founded further companies that specialise in climate protection and reforestation in the tropics.

Aurélien Petitot

Aurélien Petitot has more than ten years of experience in the energy sector with focus on acquisition, structuring, financing and managing renewable energy projects. Since 2017, he serves as Chief Investment Officer (CIO) at 12Tree and is responsible for the investment management, fund management and asset management divisions.

Luzie Mülsch

Before starting at 12Tree as the Head of Legal and Compliance, Luzie was a transactions lawyer in international law firms advising clients in joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, bankruptcy law, and other areas of corporate and commercial law. Luzie has been admitted to the bar in Germany. She has studied in Spain, worked in the USA, and speaks fluent German, English, and Spanish.

Oliver Hanke

Oliver, Chief Project Officer, offers 20 years of experience in investment strategy, project finance, and business development in real assets and sustainable investments. He was Managing Director at Bank Julius Baer responsible for Product Management and started his career at TelerealTrillium, a London-based commercial real estate specialist for PPP projects. Oliver has a MA in Economics, specializing in project finance and international trade from Universität Münster.

Helen Brand

Before starting at 12Tree as a Management Assistant, Helen worked for an energy efficiency agency, supporting in conceiving and conducting the largest conference for energy transition in Germany. Helen has a MA in Sustainability Economics and Management from Universität Oldenburg, a BA in Economics from Hochschule Bremen, and international experience in the UK, Switzerland and France.

Paul-André Lacoste

Paul, Investment Manager, started his career as a Transactions & Restructuring consultant at KPMG in Hamburg, Germany. He then worked in structured finance on renewable energy projects for SaarLB, a German regional bank based in Saarbrücken. Before joining 12Tree, Paul worked in Munich as a corporate banker for French banking group CM-CIC, where he focused on corporate lending and private placements. Paul holds a BBA in Finance from HEC Montréal.

Diane Harkleroad

Diane, Investment Analyst, has three years of experience as a financial controller at UBS and Jefferies in New York City and holds a MSc in Sustainable Resource Management with specializations in Environmental Economics and Materials & Waste Management from the Technische Universität München and a BSc in Finance and Economics from New York University’s Stern School of Business.

Lenny Martinez

Lenny, Sustainability Manager, has been working as Project Manager for ForestFinance France since 2014. He has a MA in European Politics and a MSc in International Economic Development from Sciences Po and international work experience in both the public and private sector: at European think tank Eating City in France and Italy, NGO Action Against Hunger in Spain, the German Environmental Foundation in Germany, and local Deputies in France, among others.

12Tree Team LATIN AMERICA

Petra Kollmannsberger

Petra Kollmannsberger is the Chief Operations Officer (COO) of 12Tree and responsible for the operative management in Latin America. She has in-depth experience in senior positions in international coordination and project development. Petra has an extensive knowledge of intercultural communication as well as country-specific expertise in Latin American states such as Panama, Colombia and Costa Rica.

Andres Cadavid

Andres, Head of South America, has over 20 years of experience in international coordination and project development, including working for insurance and investment companies before taking over operational management of Colombia at 12Tree in 2017. His extensive knowledge of the Latin American governments and authorities, his many years of experience with multicultural project teams and his country competence for Panama and Colombia are important for his role at 12Tree.

Carolina Mejía

Carolina, Project Manager, has 5 years of experience in the cocoa industry, beginning with developing sustainable post-harvest cocoa infrastructure and later moved into plantations infrastructure improvement and cocoa plantation management. She is a structural architect by training, has a diploma as Expert in Sustainable Development, and is LEED GA accredited.

Sabine Wischnat

Sabine, Project Manager, previously worked 3years with Forest Finance in Panama in quality control of forestry projects established with teak and native hardwoods. Sabine holds a MSc in Agricultural Sciences in the Tropics obtained from Universität Hohenheim and a BSc in Forestry Sciences & Ecology from Universität Göttingen.

Daniel Farkas

Daniel, Project Manager, started his career as a derivatives trader on the LIFFE for G.H. Financials and has since then held positions related to agroforestry at CIAT and GIZ. Before joining 12Tree, Daniel worked as a soft commodities trader in Frankfurt, where he focused on physical and financial coffee trading. Daniel holds a BA in Finance from York University and a MSc in Forestry from Universität Göttingen.

Carlos Hernan Escobar Ramirez

Carlos, Project Manager, began his professional career with 2 years as a research assistant at EAFIT University in Colombia. He worked one year as a technical consultant with the Ministry of Agriculture, strengthening the cocoa production chain and carrying out feasibility studies for cocoa plantation and sustainability projects in Armenia and Colombia. Carlos also worked as a technical consultant for cocoa exporting company COLCOCOA. Carlos has a BSc in Agronomic Engineering and is completing his MSc in Agricultural Sciences at the National University of Colombia.

Juan Jaramillo

Before joining 12Tree as a Project Manager, Juan worked at Maderas Plasticas as an administrative assistant. He holds a BA in Investment Management with a minor in International Business from Lynn University.

Jaume Martorell Mir

Jaume, Project Manager, has worked in Nicaragua for the last eleven years. The first two years he worked in a local NGO with social projects. In 2009 he was linked to a exporter cooperative working in sesame, honey, cashew nuts, beans and coffee for 3 years like a project manager. After that 2 years in international NGO – VECOMA from Belgium in cocoa projects with small farmers in Honduras and Nicaragua. The last 4 years he has been the manager of the cocoa purchase center of Ritter Sport in Nicaragua.

Irene Montes Londoño

Irene, Project Manager, has 10+ years of field experience on agroforestry operations and three years of international consulting experience on attracting private investment to landscape restoration (WRI), designing rural development projects for smallholder farmers (IFAD, TNC), and enhancing the sustainability of commodity supply chains in agricultural landscapes (UNDP). Irene holds a bachelor’s degree on Environmental Engineering from Universidad de Los Andes in Colombia and a master’s degree on Forest Science from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. While at Yale, her research focused on indigenous multipurpose trees and agroforestry systems as tools to restore degraded landscapes in tropical countries.

 

Jessica Arce Palomo

Jessica, Management Assistant, has a Bachelor’s degree as an engineer from the Universidad de la Sabana in Colombia. She worked at the Technische Universität Köln as academic assistant, in charge of project administration, organization and development in the material science laboratory. After several years of living in Germany, she has a deep understanding of the German culture and language.

Nery Villacorta

Nery, Finance Manager, has an accounting and finance degree with over 12 years of experience in finance, accounting and tax advisory. She was a Project Manager at the Global Fund and Accountant and Head of Finance at Ad-cap Securities SAB. She has a Public Accountant title from Callao National University.