Arif Naqvi, 50, is Founder and Group Chief Executive Officer of Abraaj Capital. Abraaj is the largest private equity group in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia (MENASA) with paid-up capital of US$ 1.5 billion. Since inception in 2002, it has raised about US$ 7 billion and distributed about US$ 3 billion to its investors. Abraaj has been associated with some of the region's most notable transactions and has won numerous awards including ‘Middle East Private Equity Firm of the Year' from London-based Private Equity International (PEI) five years in a row since 2005.

Mr. Naqvi is a member of the Young Presidents Organization, where he was the Emirates Chapter Chairman from 2002 to 2003. He was designated a New Asian Leader by the World Economic Forum (WEF) in 2003 / 2004, and is a member of numerous think-tanks and policy groups such as the WEF Arab Business Council. He is a board member of the Pakistan Human Development Fund and the King Abdullah II Award for Youth Innovation & Achievement in Jordan. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Emerging Markets Private Equity Association, the IMD Foundation Board and the Advisory Board of the Columbia University Middle East Research Center.

In 2007 and 2008, PEI identified Mr. Naqvi as one of the 50-most influential people in the global private equity industry. In 2006, he was awarded the highest civilian honour in Pakistan, the Sitari-e-Imtiaz, by the republic's president. Mr. Naqvi is a graduate of the London School of Economics and previously worked with Arthur Andersen & Co, American Express Bank, Saudi Arabia's Olayan Group and The Cupola Group, which he founded in 1994.

In November of 2010, Naqvi and Abraaj hosted the first ever Celebration of Entrepreneurship in the Middle East.