Born 1962 into an Angolan family of property developers, Alvaro Sobrinho eventually moved to Lisbon, Portugal to study. He focused his studies in mathematics and statistics at the NOVA University of Lisbon, an experience that gave him the skills he need to become the philanthropist, banker, businessman and father that he is today.
Beginning his career in insurance, Alvaro Sobrinho eventually made the move to banking and in 2000 become a director at the Banco Espirito Santo in Lisbon. In his new position he was given the job of founding a branch of the bank in his home country, Angola.
As CEO of Banco Espirito Santo Angola (BESA) from the early 2000s, Sobrinho led the bank through a period of fast growth and earned the bank many prestigious awards, including the World Finance award for best bank in Angola. Under Sobrinho’s supervision the bank increased its revenues from $3 million to over $300 million in just a decade. His success and obvious business acumen earned him a first class reputation in the world of finance and business.
Sobrinho left BESA in 2012 to start a new job as the Executive Chairman of Banco Valor, Angola’s fastest growing bank. His interest in the bank is due to its ambition and technology focus. Technology plays an important role in the life of Albaro Sobrinho who is a staunch advocate of technological and educational investments in support of African development. Sobrinho firmly believes that, for Africa, the path to prosperity lies in technology and scientific innovation.
His firm belief in a techno-scientific development model for Africa has motivated Sobrinho’s philanthropy and charity work. To this end he co-founded the Planet Earth Institute (PEI), a pan-African NGO focused on the scientific advancement of the continent. Sobrinho sits on the board of PEI and is currently the organisations Chairman.
Alongside his work and philanthropy, Sobrinho is an active investor in technology infrastructure in Africa. Most recently he has invested in a nationwide broadband and wireless Internet network in Cameron, the Ivory Coast and Angola named YooMee Africa. He is also working with a publishing company to distribute high-end learning materials across the African continent.
Despite his demanding business and development commitments, Sobrinho still makes time for his wife, Ana, and two children.