Banker Saves 20,000 From Nepal to Uganda With Her Profits
Friday, August 2, 2013
Amid the cloying dust, blaring car horns and beggars’ wails that echo through the ancient streets of Kathmandu, Nepal, a familiar sound emerges: the strains of pop star Psy’s “Gangnam Style.” In front of a crowd of giggling teenagers, a 50-year-old woman dances, blond hair flying, arms waving.
It’s impossible to tell that the laughing, confident onlookers she’s entertaining have been rescued from the clutches of child traffickers, Bloomberg Markets magazine will report in its September issue.
A week later, the same woman is in the hushed business-class cabin of a Cathay Pacific flight from Hong Kong to Sydney. She has work on her mind: directing a bank, negotiating the sale of a European covered-bond portfolio and convincing managers who control Australia’s $1.5 trillion in pension assets to place money with Wall Street funds.
New Zealand-born Audette Exel lives a double life. In New York, London, Bermuda and Sydney, she’s a company director and the owner and head of Isis (Asia Pacific) Pty, which advises companies on mergers and raises money for fund managers such as New York-based Aquiline Capital Partners LLC. In the dirt-poor Himalayan foothills and civil war-ravaged East African bush, Exel is better known as the caftan-wearing founder and chief fundraiser of the Isis Foundation, which she says provides life-saving health care and education for 20,000 people a year in two of the world’s most impoverished nations, Nepal and Uganda.