Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder
Nirav S. Patel is the Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of The Asia Group. He is responsible for the firm’s business strategy and management of a diverse portfolio of industry-leading corporate clients. He also serves concurrently as a Board Director of The Asia Group Foundation.
With almost twenty years of experience at the intersection of business and policy, Nirav serves as a trusted counselor to corporate leaders and investors alike. Drawing from experience across virtually every sector, his areas of expertise include: assessing market and political dynamics across Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and throughout Southeast Asia; developing comprehensive market entry strategies to capture opportunities in Asia; leading project management teams to advance licensing campaigns; implementing complex crisis management strategies; supporting client efforts to resolve regulatory disputes and mitigate policy risks; and deal sourcing for leading investment banks and private equity groups. In particular, Nirav is an industry leading expert with a proven track record of advancing large scale M&A transactions – including the largest private-equity operational control transaction in Vietnam in 2019.
Until recently, Nirav served as The Asia Group’s President and was formerly the Chief Operating Officer, where he drove the firm’s growth from a small start-up to a dynamic industry-leading strategic and business advisory firm. Now with over 50 full-time employees and advisors, The Asia Group works in nearly 20 markets across the Indo-Pacific, Middle East, and Latin America. Nirav is also an experienced private investor in residential real estate, distressed credit situations, and growth equity for small- and medium-sized business through his personal investment vehicle VietPoint Capital. He serves on the Board of Directors of An Phat Holdings and its North American Subsidiary AFC EcoPlastics, a global leader in the development and manufacturing of cutting edge bio-polymers and bio compostable products. He also serves as a member of the board of the National Association for Urban Debate Leagues (NAUDL).
Previously, Nirav served at the U.S. Department of State from 2009 to 2013, first as Senior Adviser to Assistant Secretary Kurt Campbell and then as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State (DAS) in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs (EAP). In these capacities, he was responsible for the development of strategies and major policy initiatives that helped advance American strategic interests across the Asia-Pacific region, including as the lead diplomat for U.S. efforts to engage the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Prior to serving in the State Department, Nirav was a Fellow and the Director of the Asia-Pacific Strategy Program at the bipartisan Center for a New American Security (CNAS) and an Analyst at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). He has authored numerous journal articles, op-eds, and reports.
Nirav holds a Master of Arts in International Security Studies from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of North Texas, where he was a finalist in the national cross-examination policy debate tournament. In his “spare time,” he is a fitness enthusiast and foodie. He lives with his wife, two sons, and daughter in McLean, Virginia.