Orange River Advisors is a boutique advisory firm that specializes in helping entrepreneurial organizations achieve their most important goals. Through its consulting services the firm provides expertise and bandwidth to help entrepreneurs finance, grow, or improve their businesses. The firm helps clients plan for their capital needs and buy or sell assets and offers tailored programs, seminars, and resources to solve common problems for entrepreneurs in a streamlined, high-value manner.  

Roy Johnston, Principal

  • Fortune 200 Corporate, VC & PE Experience
  • Experienced Board Director
  • Wide-Ranging Skills in Finance, Transactions, Project Management
  • Attorney & Certified Mediator w/ Multinational Experience

For 16 years, I’ve helped organizations tackle their most important business objectives and improve their effectiveness. My diverse multinational background as a corporate attorney, project leader, and Board director in both Fortune 200 and small business environments has provided me with many opportunities to develop and apply my expertise in transactions, investment screening, portfolio management, and capital raising. It’s through those experiences that I continue to bring a unique perspective to Orange River clients today. Most importantly, I pride myself on bringing an unbiased “owner’s mentality” to my engagements.

My career started at Bowman's, a premier South African law firm with 300+ attorneys in 6 offices in South Africa and other African countries.  At Bowman's, I practiced law with the firm's corporate and finance teams, representing clients in a variety of transactions such as a private equity firm's $300 million purchase of a mining business, the $420 million underwriting of a new light rail system, and the $370 million sale of a hospital group. Following Bowman's, I worked as counsel to a publicly listed mezzanine debt fund, Makalani Holdings, which managed $350 million in invested funds.

Wanting to broaden my understanding and experience in all aspects of what it takes to make a business successful, I obtained an MBA from Rice University, where I graduated in the top 10 students in the class.  Prior to founding Orange River, I joined Waste Management’s (NYSE: WM) corporate venture capital and strategy teams, managing a portfolio of investments in the waste conversion, recycling, and logistics sectors.  At WM, I screened investment opportunities, valued target businesses, negotiated and structured investments, executed growth plans for portfolio entities, and served on the Boards of two WM portfolio entities.  


  • Attorney, State Bar of Texas, ‘09
  • Attorney, High Court of South Africa, ‘04
  • Mediator, A.A. White Dispute Resolution Center, ‘08


  • Master of Business Administration, Rice University
  • Master of Laws, Tulane University, with distinction
  • Bachelor of Laws & Commerce, University of Johannesburg, with distinction

The story behind our name 

The name Orange River Advisors is a nod to my heritage. The Orange River is the longest river in South Africa, where I grew up. It flows 1,367 miles (2,200 km) from the mountains in eastern South Africa and Lesotho to the Atlantic in the west. Like the Mississippi, it provides water to much of the country.

Its English name is a derivation of “Oranje Rivier”, so named by settlers for the House of Orange (the Dutch royal family). The river is also known as the Senqu, Groote, or Gariep River, ancient names used by people in different parts of southern Africa.

I chose the name as a reflection of the strength and sustaining nature of rivers large and small around the world. I see a parallel between rivers and the best businesses and organizations: both are persistent, flexible, life-giving, intricate, and vital to our world.
— Roy Johnston, Principal

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3302 Canal Street, Suite 33, Houston TX 77003

T +1  (832) 271-3940 (main)


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