Kaiima's team

Mark Chess

CEO and Executive Chairman

Mr. Mark Chess brings over 17 years of experience in private equity and investment management to Kaiima. Mark is a managing director at Infinity Equity an $800m private equity fund. He helped establish the FBR Infinity II Fund in 2001 and the world's first foreign currency fund in China in 2005 (Infinity-CSVC) and managed 13 companies in the Infinity-NSF portfolio from 2003-2013. Mark led Infinity’s investments in the agriculture and energy industries and brings this sector expertise to Kaiima. Prior to Infinity, he was a director with Partners500, leading the company’s international business development. Mark graduated with a degree in Business Honors from the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin.


Mail: mark@kaiima.com

Marconi Dias

General Manager of Kaiima Brazil

Marconi Dias has been working Brazilian agribusiness market for 26 years with an emphasis on commercial, marketing and business development in various companies. Marconi was recently Brazil Commercial and Marketing Director at Plant Impact plc. where he established its Brazilian operations and led all strategic relationships until it was acquired at the end of 2018. Mr. Dias has over 20 years’ experience from Syngenta Crop Protection as Corn Marketing Manager for Latin America focused on expanding Syngenta’s entire corn platform, including seeds, traits and all crop protection products. Earlier in his career, Marconi developed marketing and sales expertise with positions at ICI/Zeneca and Novartis.

Mr. Dias is an agronomist with an undergraduate degree from Universidade Federal de Goiás and postgraduate degrees in Marketing from FAAP and INSEAD. 

As the General Manager of Kaiima Brazil, Marconi is responsible for managing the local Brazilian team and all strategic, financial, legal and administrative processes for Kaiima Brazil.


Mail: marconi.dias@kaiima.com

Ran Yifa

Chief Agronomist

Mr. Ran Yifa serves as Kaiima's chief-agronomist since 2013. Ran has more than 3 decades of extensive experience in crop management and crop adaption to different climates and conditions. Prior to working in Kaiima Ran earned his degree in industrial engineering and served in managerial positions in several agronomic organizations.

Mail: rany@kaiima.com

Yuval Peles

Head of Castor Breeding

Mr. Yuval Peles, joined Kaiima in 2009 and leads Kaiima's castor breeding programs since 2011. Yuval brings to Kaiima experience in genetics and product development he acquired also as Top Seeds leading Pepper breeder. Yuval is leading an international team working on new castor varieties and adaptation of the world most advanced castor hybrids to individual markets. Yuval holds an M.Sc. in Agronomy from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. 


Mail: ypeles@kaiima.com    

Ori Ben-Herzel

Director of Technology

Mr. Ori Ben-Herzel joined Kaiima in 2012 and serves as Kaiima’s Director of Technology since 2017.  Prior to that, Ori held different R&D leadership roles, including Global Breeding Lead and Vegetable Breeding Programs Manager in Top-Seeds and Soli. Ori’s expertise includes product development, R&D projects management, pipeline management, crop phenotyping and plant breeding, together with strategic thinking, success and objectives orientation and leadership skills.

Mail: ori@kaiima.com

Yaniv Lerenthal

Director of Innovation

Dr. Yaniv Lerenthal has been leading Kaiima's R&D lab since 2013. Under his leadership Kaiima's R&D has developed into a cutting-edge genomics lab utilizing advanced genomics technologies and bioinformatics to push breeding and technology development forward.  Yaniv has a background in both plant and human genetics and bioinformatics and brings vast multi-disciplinary experience and leadership.  Yaniv earned his PhD with honors from the Tel-Aviv university School of Medicine.

Mail: yanivl@kaiima.com

Vered Shoher-Yafe

Director of Finance

Mrs. Vered Shoher-Yafe joined Kaiima in 2014 as an economist and an auditer and serves as Kaiima’s Director of Finance since 2017. Prior to that, Vered worked at Carmel Olefins and NILIT Ltd. as an economist. Vered has gained over 14 years of experience in building and managing budget control, sales and profitability analyzes, risk management, economic feasibility testing and cash flow management. Vered holds an M.B.A from Ben-Gurion University and a B.A. in Economics and Management from The Max Stern Yezreel Valley College.

Mail: vered@kaiima.com

Fabio Franco

Market Development and Sales - Brazil

Fabio Franco brings over 20 years of experience in soybean, corn, cotton and sorghum. Prior to Kaiima he was Product Development Coordinator and business manager at Monsanto Brazil with more than 18 years of experience in the Cerrado, and a Regional Manager of Crop Protection in the 4 southern states of Brazil. Fabio holds an Agronomist Engineer degree from UFSCar-SP and an MBA in Marketing from Fundação Dom Cabral.

Mail: Fabiofranco@kaiima.com

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