Who we are

Dr Derk Bienen

Derk has experience in the implementation of development co-operation projects funded by various donors since 1993. He has worked in numerous technical assistance projects, particularly in the area of trade policy and regional integration, investment promotion, and competition policy. Derk has been a founder and managing partner of BKP since 2006. He also lectures on trade, regional integration, competition and industrial policy, and is Adjunct Associate Professor at the Department of Economics of Addis Ababa University.

Derk holds a PhD in Economics, University of Göttingen (Germany). He also studied Economics and Political Science at the University of Tübingen (Germany) and the University of the Andes in Mérida (Venezuela).

He is fluent in German, English and Spanish, and has knowledge of French and Portuguese; he has mostly worked in Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean.

Timothée Picarello

Tim is a managing partner of BKP. He has worked in numerous technical assistance projects particularly in the area of trade and investment promotion for the last 15 years (since 2004). Tim spent the first 5 years of his career working as a project manager on private sector development technical assistance projects for a medium sized consultancy based in Germany. In 2009, Tim joined BKP and started working as a consultant / economist in private sector development and trade related technical assistance studies and projects. In the last 10 years working at BKP, Tim has carried out more than 20 projects as a consultant, increasingly specialising over the last 5 years in the field of complex evaluations (at the policy level or for complex programmes).

Tim earned a joint B.A. in Political Science and Economics from McGill University and a master’s in international Trade and Finance from Montreal University. He is fluent in English and French and has knowledge of German and Spanish.

Emmanuel Baudelet

Emmanuel has more than 15 years of experience in the implementation of development co-operation projects funded by various donors, in particular in the area of trade and private sector development. His recent assignments include: the Evaluation of the EU’s Policy Coherence for Development (PCD); Annual Reviews 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017 of TradeMark East Africa (TMEA); the Evaluation of the AfDB’s Ghana Country Strategy and Programme 2004-2014; the Development of a Domestic Market Recapturing Strategy in Rwanda; a Study on East Africa’s manufacturing sector; and a project to support the formulation of a regional master plan for the development of trade in services in Central Africa in the framework of the EPA.

Emmanuel holds a master’s in management from Audencia Nantes and a Masters in Development Economics from the University of Paris XII. He is fluent in English, French and German and has a working knowledge of Spanish.

Valentin Gerold

Valentin has been working with BKP since 2010. He has worked on technical assistance projects in the fields of trade and private sector development both as project director and as economist for 15 years. Recently his work has focused on evaluation assignments both at project and programme level. Among his recent assignments are: Summative Evaluation of the African Legal Support Facility’s Medium-Term Strategy 2013-2017 (2019-2020); Annual Review of TradeMark East Africa (2015; 2016; 2017); Evaluation of the AfDB’s Ghana Country Strategy and Programme 2004-2014 (2015).

Valentin holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and International Relations from the University of Reading (UK) and a Master’s in European Social Policy from the London School of Economics (UK). He is fluent in English, French, German and Spanish.


Ramona Kettenstock

Ramona is one of the two founders of BKP. She has 20 years of experience in the implementation and management of complex development cooperation projects in particular in the area of private sector development and trade. She is responsible for acquisition, FWC and project management, communication and event management in the context of development project implementation. Recently, Ramona specialized in women’s economic empowerment, and gender and trade issues. She has built a network of gender and trade practitioners and experts, and established working relationships with relevant units at the WTO, UNCTAD, ITC and UN ECLAC.

Ramona holds an MA in English Literature and Political Science from the University of Munich (Germany).

She is fluent in English and German and has knowledge of French and Spanish.

Dr Fikremarkos Birhanu

Fikremarkos is Professor of International Economic Law at Addis Ababa University and has been an Associate of BKP since 2008. He has extensive experience in the analysis of economic, trade, investment and industrial policies and laws particularly in the context of African countries. Fikremarkos is specialised in international economic law, trade and competition law, intellectual property policy and law, investment, trade policy analysis (in particular WTO and EPA negotiations). He earned his PhD from Osaka University, Japan, and did Post Doctoral Studies at Yale Law School.

Dan Ciuriak

Dan specialises in international trade, finance and development. He has wide-ranging experience in the analysis and formulation of public policy, development of legislation, economic analysis in support of litigation (both private and state-to-state), and training and technical assistance in applied trade analysis and modelling. He has published widely as author and editor, within government and in a personal capacity (ranking in the top 2% of all authors by paper downloads on the Social Sciences Research Network in 2010 and 2011); commented frequently in the media; and made numerous presentations at various academic, business and official venues, including the WTO, the World Bank, APEC and the OECD. Previously, he was Deputy Chief Economist at the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT). Prior to joining Canada’s Public Service, he studied at McMaster University in Hamilton (Masters in Economics in 1977). Dan has been a BKP associate since 2008; he also is Director and Principal, Ciuriak Consulting Inc.

Million Habte

Million has been an associate with BKP since 2007. He manages the Addis Ababa-based Trade & Development Law Office. He consults on trade, investment and development law issues in Ethiopia and abroad. Earlier, he has served as senior attorney for USAID WTO accession project, assisting the Ethiopian government on WTO accession issues. He has written numerous impact assessment studies in areas of trade in goods and services. His areas of expertise include WTO issues, competition and investment laws, and African regional trade issues. Million lectures on international trade and delivers training to government officials, private sector and civil society groups. He has a Masters degree in International Law and Economics (magna cum laude) from the World Trade Institute, University of Berne, Switzerland and an LL.B from Addis Ababa University.

Daniel Kwagbenu

Daniel is an Export and Investment Promotion Specialist with over 30 years experience in Ghana and throughout Sub-saharan Africa. Prior to becoming a consultant, he worked, for more than ten years, in various managment positions at the National Investment Bank of Ghana, the Ghana Export Promotion Council and the Ghana Free Zones Board.

Over the past fifteen years, Daniel has implemented numerous assignments across Sub-saharan Africa, working for the World Bank, UNDP, UNCTAD and the European Development Fund.