Small Enterprise Assistance Funds | Co-Founder | Netherlands
Bert van der Vaart was one of the co-founders of Small Enterprise Assistance Funds (SEAF) in 1989, when it was known as the CARE Small Business Assistance Corporation (CARESBAC). Mr. van der Vaart negotiated the establishment of CARESBAC/SEAF’s first fund in Poland in 1992. Mr. van der Vaart joined SEAF on a full time basis in 1994 as Director-General of CARESBAC-Polska, which under his direction grew to total capital under management of $16.8 million. While serving as Director-General of CARESBAC-Polska from August 1994 until May 1997, the company completed 27 SME investments and realized its first 6 exits. In 1997, Mr. van der Vaart became SEAF’s CEO and President and has been involved with the establishment and supervision of each SEAF fund, frequently travelling to work with each SEAF fund office.
From 1984 through 1994, Mr. van der Vaart was a Partner and Associate with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in Washington, D.C, Frankfurt, and Brussels where he specialized in corporate law. From 1983 through 1984, he was a management consultant with Bain & Company in London and Munich. He holds a J.D. from Yale Law School, where he also studied finance at Yale School of Management; a B.A. in Politics and Economics and a M. Phil. in Economics from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar; and a B.A. from the University of North Carolina, where he was a Morehead Scholar. He has co-authored "Defining SMEs: A Less Imperfect Way of Defining Small and Medium Enterprises in Developing Countries" in Brookings Global Economy and Development, September 2008. A Dutch national and dual citizen of the Netherlands and the United States, he speaks Dutch, English, German, French, and some Polish.