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Vitas Group today announced the appointment of Diane Smith, as a new member of their Board of Directors.

Diane is a seasoned private equity specialist with nearly 30 years of experience in domestic and emerging market investing and fund management, including the launching and management of several new private equity and mezzanine investment businesses in both the U.S. and Latin America.   She currently serves as a Senior Advisor to Darby Overseas Investments, an emerging market fund manager specializing in private equity, infrastructure and credit strategies in Latin America, Eastern Europe and Asia.  Prior to joining Darby in 2007, Diane spent the bulk of her career as senior portfolio manager and Managing Director of Electra Investment Trust PLC of the U.K., playing a key role in building the firm’s new U.S. principal investing business to over half a billion dollars in equity and mezzanine investments in a wide variety of industries.  Joining Electra in 1991, Diane focused on mid-sized companies in a broad range of sectors including financial services, consumer products, industrial manufacturing, transportation, healthcare and telecom and broadcast media.

In the late 1990’s Diane spearheaded Electra’s expansion into South America, forming joint venture fund management companies to invest in Argentina and Brazil where she lived for several years to co-manage those businesses.  Prior to joining Electra, Diane was involved in building the new leveraged buyout business for a New York-based thrift, as well as serving in international banking and corporate finance roles with Manufacturers Hanover Trust.  Before joining MHT she spent several years in Spain developing export markets for Spanish producers of industrial and consumer products.  Diane holds a master in International Management from Thunderbird School of Global Management, and a BA in Communications from Washington State University.  She speaks Spanish and Portuguese.

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