Kazi Helal Ahmed
Founder, President & CEO
of International Finance & Development
Corporation (IFDC), New York
Kazi Helal Ahmed is a highly reputed and experienced finance entrepreneur involved in the non-banking financial institution industry, and particularly in the international project financing and private equity investment arena. He is the Founder, President & CEO of International Finance & Development Corporation (IFDC), a New York City based global finance and diversified private equity investment firm.
Kazi Helal Ahmed was born in a respectable educated family in Brahmanbaria district of Bangladesh. His father’s name is late Kazi Abul Hashem and mother Johara Begum. He was meritorious from his childhood. After completing SSC from Brahmanbaria High School and HSC from Brahmanbaria College, he was admitted to the Department of Economics at the University of Dhaka. With a goal of going to the United States to attain higher education, he participated in TOEFL exam, in which he scored 580 marks out of 600 in the exam. He completed his post-graduate degree in Economics from the University of Utah in Saltlake City Utah, in the United States, and then received an MBA in Finance from Cambridge University.
Mr. Ahmed always believes that even though it is possible to improve one’s life by working in a lucrative job, it is possible to improve the lives of many others by creating employment opportunities and providing innovative goods and services to improve the lives of consumers via setting up and operating a successful business. With this philosophy in mind, this talented and visionary young man started his journey as an entrepreneur by starting his first business in New York City in 1989.
In 1992, Mr. Ahmed started a garments buying house in New York and started an import, wholesale and distribution business. At the same time, his family friend, Walid Ahmed, also started a garments buying house business in New York. The two were likely the first Bangladeshi Americans to promote the Bangladesh garments sector in the United States by setting up such garment buying house businesses in New York City. Additionally, Mr. Ahmed also set up a garments buying house in Dhaka to look after his garments orders. At that time, the concept of a “garments buying house” was new in Bangladesh.
At the time, most American buyers did not know about the Bangladesh garments industry. In fact, many did not even know where to Bangladesh on a map. Thus, Mr. Ahmed often took the world map with him to show the location of Bangladesh in world map to his buyers. He was able to persuade many top and leading American buyers and convinced them to purchase garments from Bangladesh. Through his buying house, his American buyers bought large quantities of garments from Bangladesh worth over billions of dollars.
Richard Adjmi, a well-respected leader within the Sephardic Jewish community and CEO of the Age Group, more commonly known to as Richie, was the first buyer of Kazi Helal Ahmed’s garments business. Kazi Helal Ahmed later developed a close friendship with Richie and they eventually became business partners. Their friendship lasted for nearly three decades and they are still close friends, today. Richie’s family known in New York as the famous “Adjmi Family”, is known as an influential and wealthy NYC-based family. The Adjmi family is leading the fashion industry, real estate and retail industry in New York and all over USA. Through Richard Adjmi, Kazi Ahmed developed a strong relationship with the Sephardic Jewish business community and various other influential business communities in New York City and built up partnerships in various large scale business ventures with them.
In 1998, he set up a garment industry in New York named Monarch Garments. After a year of operation in 36th Avenue, Astoria, he moved Monarch Garments to Manhattan’s Garment District. He made many top branded garments locally in New York, as well as in Bangladesh. In 2001, he founded International Finance & Development Corporation (IFDC), in which he also serves as its President & CEO.
IFDC is a private financing company approved by the New York State Banking Department and has authorized representatives in more than 50 countries worldwide. The company has extensive experience in capital management and large-scale infrastructure projects funding worldwide, particularly in projects valued at 100 million to 10 billion USD. Kazi Helal Ahmed has tirelessly been working to expand the group’s funding activities globally. IFDC received a number of awards in recognition of its quality services and achievements. In 2012, this institution was awarded Best of Manhattan award on behalf of Manhattan Award Program. In 2016, Corporate America-News, a leading magazine of US Business markets, awarded IFDC as Best Diversified Private Equity Investment Group-USA & Recognized Leaders in Oil & Gas Investor. In the same year, Al Global Media, a US financial magazine, awarded IFDC as Most Diversified Private Equity Investment Group & Most Trusted in Debt and Equity Funding Award in recognition of its success.
Additionally, Kazi Helal Ahmed made a JV partnership with one of the nation’s largest hotel groups in the United States. Pacific Pearl Hotels (PPH) Mgt formerly, known as American Property Management Corporation (APMC), is a JV company of IFDC. PPH/APMC is one of the top 10 ranked and leading hotel management groups in North America.
Kazi Helal Ahmed expanded IFDC’s investment portfolio in the energy sector by forming IFDC-Vulcan Energy Group, a joint-venture with Vulcan Capital Management, in which he serves as its President, and United Solar Power Corp. Via these JV and portfolio companies, IFDC is an investor, developer and operator of energy & power projects, solar and wind power projects, and hydropower project worldwide.
In addition to large-scale project financing, IFDC also participates in small to mid-size business finance solutions via one of its portfolio companies, IFDC-Capital Funding, in which Mr. Ahmed serves as its President & CEO. Mr. Ahmed is also the Chairman and CEO of Prime Industries USA Inc.
In 2001, Mr. Ahmed founded Millennium Holdings Ltd., a JV hotel investment and development company in Bangladesh. He persuaded Hilton Hotels Corporation to open Dhaka Hilton Hotel and he signed a 20-year hotel management contract with Hilton to manage and operate Dhaka Hilton Hotel.
IFDC, one of the world’s most innovative non-banking financial institutions, is not only driving the US economy forward but also contributing to the economic dynamism of various countries around the world. He has access and relationships with some of the world’s largest private equity investment firms and debt financing organizations. IFDC invests their funds under management, along with private and institutional investors, via innovative methods in large-scale projects around the world, which have major economic multipliers.
In Mr. Ahmed’s personal life, he is married to Mrs. Sabina Kazi. They are a happy couple residing in New York City and are the proud parents of their son, Jamie Kazi. Jamie graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Finance from Pace University located in Downtown Manhattan. Jamie leads a career in public policy and politics and is considered a rising star in New York’s Democratic Party.
Kazi Helal Ahmed says, “To achieve something, one has to dream first and then work hard to materialize it in a planned way.” Kazi Helal Ahmed is a legendary entrepreneurial personality and has contributed to revolutionizing the investment and project finance sector in various countries around the world. Mr. Ahmed is proud to be Bangladeshi-American and believes that Bangladeshi immigrants are a “bridge” between the two countries. He is also optimistic about the economic prosperity of Bangladesh.