Core Team

Our people are impact-oriented and take emotional ownership over what we do. We insist on highest ethical standards and demonstrate the utmost respect for our clients and our partners

Stoere Binken Design – René Verkaart
Cynthia Wandia
Founder and CEO

Cynthia founded ASTRA Innovations as an economical model that enabled easier and faster access to energy assets in Sub-Saharan Africa. This convinced E.ON SE to invest in a seed round targeting market validation.

Cynthia joined E.ON in 2010 holding various positions in energy trading and engineering, forming strong relationships with OEMs, EPCs, Utilities/Asset Owners, O&M contractors and consultants in Europe. She studied Electrical Engineering at Yale University, and worked IKEA (Greece), Lehman Brothers (New York) and Johnson & Johnson (Singapore) and further social work in Mexico, China, Cambodia, Venezuela and Kenya.

Cynthia is a Kenyan national, fluent in English, Spanish, French, German and Swahili and with intermediate proficiency in Mandarin.

Ibrahim Sawaneh
Stakeholder Manager

Ibrahim is responsible for strengthening and optimizing the company’s existing stakeholder relationships, having built strong cultural and professional networks as part of asset management in family businesses across West Africa. He also coordinates the operational efficiencies including developing and managing the company’s accounting and legal frameworks.

Ibrahim started his career as a Consultant at PwC and has a history of entrepreneurship as the co-founder of GroupEstate, a German real estate startup. He holds two degrees in Business Administration from Humboldt-University in Berlin.

Ibrahim is originally from Guinea, now a German national and is fluent in German, English, French and Maninka.

Dominik Neubauer
Senior Business Analyst

Dominik is the Senior Business Analyst at ASTRA Innovations, managing and structuring the financial analysis of projects as well as leading ASTRA’s market intelligence effort, which has placed ASTRA at the front of the market with regards to stranded asset data, while monitoring and flagging socio-economic indicators across Sub-Saharan Africa that support the project development process.

Dominik joined ASTRA as part of the global graduate program at E.ON. He obtained his degree in Mathematical Studies and Financial Engineering from the Technical University of Munich and has garnered work experience in the insurance industry with Allianz and UniCredit.

Dominik is a German national and is fluent in English, Spanish and German.

Raf Kelgtermans
Engineering Advisor

Raf provides engineering advisory to ASTRA Innovations, possessing a strong track record in engineering and power plant project development. Raf has over 25 years of experience in developing, constructing and operating power plants across the world, including in Bahrain, Italy and Brussels.

Throughout the market validation and product development process, he has supported ASTRA Innovations in a dual role, while a member of the Global Operational Support Team at E.ON Generation.

Raf is a Belgian national and is fluent in English, Dutch, French, and German.

Harald Schuetz
Technical Director

Harald joins ASTRA to set up and lead the technical team, bringing over 30 years of experience in EPC, Operations Management, Business Development and Health/Safety for multinational engineering companies including The Linde Group and Julius Berger.

Harald’s engineering career has spanned the globe, setting up and leading engineering & commercial teams in regions including Europe, West Africa (Nigeria) and the Asia-Pacific region (Singapore, Shanghai, Hong Kong).

Harald is a German national, fluent in English and German, with elementary Spanish skills.