FRA – 56P


Management Team

NG Energy has a Colombian based management team with significant in-country experience and strong technical experience within Colombian basins.

Brian Paes-Braga


Mr. Brian Paes-Braga is a Canadian-born entrepreneur, merchant banking executive, and author. Currently, he serves as Managing Partner at SAF Group, a leading structured credit and merchant banking group which builds, invests, finances, and advises high growth companies as well as provides flexible and long-term capital solutions to public and private corporations while providing stable returns for investors through its structured credit arm. As an executive, Mr. Paes-Braga was Founder and CEO of Lithium X Energy Corp., a lithium resource company which, within 2.5 years, raised approximately CDN$53 million and was acquired in an all-cash deal for CDN$265 million. Mr. Paes-Braga was formerly Chair of the board of directors of Thunderbird Entertainment, and a former board member of DeepGreen Metals (now TMC the metals company Inc.), which closed a >US$2 billion go-public transaction on the NASDAQ in September 2021 and aims to supply the world with ethical, clean metals harvested from the deep ocean floor.

Serafino Iacono

CEO & Executive Director

Serafino Iacono has over three decades of experience in capital markets and public companies and has raised more than $4 billion for numerous natural resource projects internationally. Mr. Iacono is the former Co-Chairman and Executive Director of Pacific Rubiales. He also currently serves as an Executive Chairman at Gran Colombia Gold Corp, a mid-tier gold producer in Colombia.

Federico Restrepo-Solano

President & Executive Director

Federico Restrepo-Solano is a Colombian business executive with more than 27 years of experience in the mining, oil and infrastructure industries. Currently he is a Partner and Corporate Director of Qvartz Capital Partners, a strategic advisory firm, and has served as Senior Vice-President of Corporate Affairs with Frontera Energy and its predecessor, Pacific Exploration and Production, President of Promotora del Puerto Integrado-Propuerto S.A., President of the National Federation of Coal Producers (Fenalcarbón), Corporate Affairs Manager for Coalcorp Mining Inc., and Special Advisor on Environmental and Port Affairs for the City of Santa Marta. Mr. Restrepo holds a degree in Social Communications Sciences from Universidad Jorge Tadeo Lozano in Bogota, and a Diploma in Corporate Finance from Universidad del Rosario.

Jorge Fonseca Chaumer

Chief Financial Officer

Mr. Fonseca has over 24 years of experience in the oil & gas and investment banking sectors and has extensive in country experience in Colombia. Most recently, Mr. Fonseca served as Structure Trade Finance Director for the oil bench in Europe, the Middle East and Africa for British Petroleum. He has worked at BP p.l.c., Frontera Energy Corp., Pacific Rubiales Energy Corp., Citigroup Inc., BBVA S.A. and Corporacion Andina de Fomento (CAF). His experience encompasses corporate finance, structured finance, project finance, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings, debt capital markets, bond issuance, corporate restructuring, derivatives, treasury management and more. He has been a part of leading and closing cross border transactions amounting to over US$22 billion, in aggregate. Mr. Fonseca holds a Bachelor (Honors) of Science in Economics from Buckingham University (UK) and a Masters (Honors) in International Finance from the University of Glasgow (UK).

Marianella Bernal Parada

SVP Finance & Country Manager

Marianella Bernal has more than 14 years of experience in public and private sectors related to investment, strategic and financial planning. She served as Private Advisor to the Minister of Information & Communication Technologies of Colombia and as a Chief of its Strategic Planning Office between 2015 and 2018. Other positions Marianella had previously held include Chief of Strategic Planning Office of Cormagdalena (between 2013 and 2015), Commercial Advisor at Hem Securities Stockbroker and Corporate Account Manager at Bancolombia.

Vincenzo Paglione

Vice President Planning

Vincenzo Paglione is a Petroleum Engineer with 45 years of experience in the World Hydrocarbons Industry, occupying technical, managerial and executive positions worldwide. President of Intevep (R&D for PDVSA), President of Codicit, Vice President and member of the PDVSA Board, Member of the Board of Nynas in Sweden and Roehr Oel in Germany, Coordinator of Citgo Board in the US, Advisor to ENI Board, member of the team for Shell’s Growth Plan strategy in Qatar, Management of Shell’s relationships with Eni and Repsol, Deputy Chairman of Shell Italia E&P, External Director and Member of the Board of Anzon Energy in Australia, Several positions in the World Energy Council (WEC), Atlantic Council and DOE in the US, President of the Venezuelan-Japanese Chamber.

Additional Board Members

All of NG Energy’s board has strong oil & gas and capital markets expertise.

Ronald Pantin


Ronald Pantin was the co-founder, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director of Pacific Exploration & Production from 2007 until 2016. He led the company during its intensive growth period. Prior to that Mr. Pantin worked in the Venezuelan oil industry for twenty-three years where he held several technical and senior managerial positions in Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA), including Vice President of Corpoven, Vice President of PDVSA E&P, President of PDVSA Exploration, President of PDVSA Servicios, and Executive Vice President of PDVSA Oil & Gas. Mr. Pantin holds degrees in Petroleum Engineering and Management Science from Mississippi State University, and Master degrees in Petroleum Engineering and Industrial Engineering from Stanford University.

Humberto Calderon Berti


Mr. Calderon Berti is a Venezuelan geologist, petroleum engineer, former president of PDVSA (Venezuela’s state-owned petroleum company), and the country’s former Minister of Energy and Mines, as well as former Minister, he is also a former OPEC president. His undergraduate degree was from the Central University of Venezuela, and he has a Master’s in petroleum engineering from the University of Tulsa in Tulsa, Oklahoma. In 2003, he and other former PDVSA petroleum executives founded the Colombian company, Vetra Energia, S.L.

Don Sewell


Mr. Don Sewell is a private and public company finance executive and former energy investment banker. Mr. Sewell currently serves as the Chief Financial Officer of a private global energy transition-focused royalty company in addition to leading energy transition investments for SAF Group. Prior to, he served as the Chief Financial Officer of a TSX-listed consumer-packaged goods company and spent several years in the energy investment banking groups of a big six Canadian bank and an independent energy investment dealer. Mr. Sewell brings a broad range of experience in corporate finance, capital markets, governance and securities regulatory matters given his public company leadership experience, in addition to advising on the completion of several billion dollars in energy sector M&A transactions and capital raises. Don holds a BSc degree from McGill University and is a CFA charterholder.

Brian O'Neill


Mr. Brian O’Neill is Vice President of SAF Growth at the SAF Group. He is a former director of Gold-X Mining which was sold to Gran Colombia Gold (now Aris Gold). He spent nearly a decade in the practice of law with leading Canadian law firm, McCarthy Tétrault LLP. His practice began in the areas of corporate and commercial law, with a focus on mergers and acquisitions, corporate reorganizations, corporate finance, intellectual property, and commercial transactions. He then shifted his practice to focus on corporate tax matters, with a particular emphasis on the tax-related aspects of mergers and acquisitions and corporate reorganizations. Mr. O’Neill received his B.Sc. Honours in Molecular Genetics, with first-class standing, and his LL.B., with distinction, from the University of Alberta. He is a member of the Law Society of British Columbia and has completed CPA Canada’s In-Depth Tax Course.