In brief: UpperStage hires emerging markets ESG specialist

Kookai Chaimahawong previously worked at Pangaea Ventures, Thailand-based startup Socialgiver and as a consultant for the UN Development Programme.

UpperStage.Capital has hired Kookai Chaimahawong, who brings emerging markets ESG experience, as the Vancouver-based firm begins to deploy capital.

Chaimahawong joins as a partner who will lead UpperStage’s sustainability strategy as the firm invests growth equity in lower mid-market North American companies in sectors including environmental technology and clean manufacturing, healthcare and nutrition, and financial inclusion initiatives.

She previously worked at Pangaea Ventures, a venture capital firm investing in climate change, food and water insecurity, and improving health and wellness in emerging markets. Chaimahawong has also worked as director of strategic partnership at the Thailand-based startup Socialgiver, and as a partnership consultant at the UN Development Programme.

UpperStage launched last year as a private markets firm seeking to “operationalise ESG”. In October, UpperStage made its first deal to acquire Talius, a 40-year-old Canadian business manufacturing roll shutters and habitat screens to help make buildings climate resilient.