London-based asset manager Kimura Capital has announced it is set to launch two new Africa-focused commodity trade finance funds.

The two funds, one open-end and another closed-end, are being created in partnership with Dhow Advisory, a consultancy firm with an on-the-ground presence across Africa.

Dhow will work to originate transactions, while Kimura will serve as the FCA-regulated investment manager, responsible for due diligence, as well as fund administration and transaction management.

Mark Wright, chief operating officer and a partner at Kimura, tells GTR that the funds will be set-up in the Caymen Islands from a governance perspective, but they’ll ultimately target importers or exporters in Africa.

“The open-end fund will be for more short-term revolving facilities, with at least one leg of the transaction having an African basis to it. We have also had some interest for a closed-end fund, which will allow investors to invest in bigger ticket transactions of a longer duration, such as pre-production or pre-export finance,” he says.

Wright says that the funds will invest in the same physical commodities as Kimura’s existing global fund, set up five years ago, targeting agricultural goods, metals, such as copper and cobalt, as well as crude oil products.

At the same time, Kimura says in a statement that the alternative investment vehicle will also have a focus on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) located across “strategic markets” in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Commenting on where Dhow will look to originate deals, the firm’s chief investment officer, Michael Kagwa, says it will work to identify extra and intra-African opportunities across Anglophone and Francophone countries in the region.

Typical ticket sizes will likely range between US$2.5mn and US$25mn for the open-end fund, and US$5mn and US$50mn for the closed-end offering, Wright adds.

The new funds are expected to launch in Q3 this year, with Kimura and Dhow currently working to onboard investors.