Elias Habbar-Baylac

Climate Investor

Chief Sustainability Office

As an investment manager in the Chief Sustainability Office, my role involves co-leading our Cisco Foundation Climate Commitment investment portfolio and actively engaging in direct venture equity investments. As an investment team, we focus on backing early-stage climate startups, from seed to Series A funding stages, and partner with climate-focused venture capital funds globally. Before joining Cisco, my journey spanned private markets investing, strategy, and policy. I collaborated with industry giants like Microsoft and prominent investors such as venture capital and private equity group EQT and pre-seed fund Third Sphere. My engagements with global impact investors like British International Investment, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, and the United Nations Development Programme have been instrumental in shaping my career. My passion for impact investing led me to over 15 emerging markets worldwide, contributing to law changes in three countries, helping build the field of gender-lens investing, and authoring impactful pieces on inclusion, gender, climate change, and sustainable infrastructures for COP-26. I hold a BA cum laude from Columbia University, a BA from Sciences Po Paris, and an MBA with a Certificate in Environmental Engineering from UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business. There, I was an Entrepreneurial Finance Fellow and a Fellow of the Center for Equity, Gender, and Leadership. I'm also a 2016 laureate of the Marcel Bleustein-Blanchet Foundation and was a fellow of the Max Planck Institute in Luxembourg. Born in Paris, France, with roots across the Mediterranean, I now reside in the heart of San Francisco, CA, with my beloved pug, Tulum. Outside of work, I immerse myself in the vibrancy of music festivals and concerts, enjoy time with Tulum, appreciate the beauty of contemporary arts, cinema, and literature, and love exploring new countries, their rich food cultures, and nature.


December 18, 2023


Investing in Africa’s Clean Energy Transition

5 min read

Through the Cisco Foundation's $100 million Climate Commitment, we are investing in early-stage climate ventures in Africa.