Barak is the only Fund Manager with an advisory team based in South Africa, Kenya and Ivory Coast, with a Mauritian Head Office to back up the Finance and Compliance aspects of the company. The Barak Funds themselves are regulated by the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority, and the Fund Manager is regulated by the Financial Services Commission of Mauritius. The Head Advisory company in Johannesburg, South Africa, is regulated by the Financial Services Board of South Africa. Furthermore, with the opening of the representative Barak UK Office in London in 2016, there is a regulator for the UK region as well as a Swiss Legal Representative Office in Zurich to monitor marketing and distribution for the region.
Barak firmly believes in a hands-on and personal approach for all its existing and prospective clients within the Barak funds’ offerings. This includes the mandatory site visits by the Deal Origination Team during the investment evaluation process to gauge and ensure all necessary aspects for a functioning business operation are in place. Critically to this process is the background, reference and track record checks to ensure the borrower considerations that make up the Barak Funds’ portfolios are adequately risk-adjusted for performance.
Barak is in the enviable position of being the only Manager with strategic access to 48 commodity storage warehouses across Africa, providing physical on-the-ground security for trades. In addition to this hands-on approach, Barak has over the years established strong partnerships with specialists in its countries of operation. Underlying commodities are monitored by 3rd Party Collateral Managers, using their experience and knowledge in respective jurisdictions in which Barak has activities. These relationships foster continuous operationally-efficient projects on an ongoing basis, especially critical for Barak’s longer-term vision into Africa.
Barak Fund Management monitors global markets closely, with a spotlight on Emerging Markets so as to implement a disciplined, repeatable investment process that is has based its success of off. The focus remains on strict controls both from an operations and investment basis, senior liens with strong covenants, and an Investment Committee that has built up seasoned knowledge of the African trade environment and where the risks and rewards lie. Although Barak remains focus on African investment, it is crucial for business survival and growth to continuously monitor the continent’s relationship with the global markets. Chinese demand for metals and minerals, for example, is a topical discussion that Barak keeps an eye on each trading day.