Craig Tashjian, MANAGING PARTNER, CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER
Craig has a track record of delivering high returns for investors since he co-founded AMERRA in 2009. As AMERRA grew both in size and capabilities, Craig’s role has evolved to Managing Partner and Chief Investment Officer. As CIO, Craig directs the firm’s strategic vision and investment strategy in private equity, special situations and debt investments.
Craig believes that the key component to AMERRA’s success is the identification, development and retention of exceptional human talent. As a result, he leads AMERRA as a progressive, entrepreneurial company dedicated to continuous learning and development. He invests a significant amount of his time and AMERRA’s resources in both formal and informal development activities and sees his role as an advisor to his teams. When speaking at the Global AgInvesting conference in April 2018, Craig was quoted as saying “the key to AMERRA's success is our talent and culture."
Craig’s technical leadership is rooted in insights he developed investing in the agribusiness and natural resources markets for over 30 years, with expertise covering global agriculture and aquaculture, natural resources and trade finance markets. Craig also leverages his experience in previous roles where he managed Société Générale’s Natural Resources business line in the Americas from 1997-2008; led the development of Société Générale’s New York based practice; and served as Global Head of Commodities at Standard Chartered Bank, managing multinational commodities finance teams.
Throughout his career, Craig leads by example and takes a “roll-up-your-sleeves” approach. He travels frequently within LATAM and Western Europe to source and diligence prospective investment opportunities, engage with existing portfolio companies, attend board meetings and keep his finger on the pulse of developments in agribusiness markets to continually develop new investment themes.
His experience and innovative approach to agriculture/agribusiness investing has led to his recognition as an expert in the agribusiness asset class. As a result, Craig is invited to speak at agricultural investment conferences and forums around the globe and is a sought after advisor to other companies and universities interested in this sector.
Craig holds an MBA from Rutgers University and a BS in Finance and Accounting from Lehigh University along with Series 7, 24 and 63 securities licenses. He currently sits on the boards of Andromeda S.A. (Greece), Biomega AS (Norway), Ciclon Trading Corp. (U.S.A), F&S Agrisolutions Indústria de Biocombustíveis Ltda. (Brazil), Pipeline Foods (USA), and Rio Amambai Agroenergia S.A. (Brazil).
Nancy Obler, PARTNER, CHIEF OPERATIONS OFFICER
As COO, Nancy is a strategic leader at AMERRA and responsible for key business areas that create stakeholder value. This value comes from a deep understanding generated by 30 years of agribusiness investing, finance and banking, combined with an exceptional academic record. She applies this knowledge along with keen intuition to both operations and talent and works closely with the CIO and the whole executive management team ensuring a cohesive approach.
Nancy manages day-to-day global operations and also has served as a member of the firm’s board, executive and investment committees since co-founding the firm in 2009. Her responsibilities include oversight of investor relations, accounting, finance, operations, IT, legal and compliance functions. Her role ensures all systems, resources and people are in place to execute AMERRA’s strategic vision, investment philosophy and business platform growth.
One of a handful of senior women executives in agribusiness investing, Nancy’s presence as part of the core management team makes AMERRA attractive to other talented women and all prospective future staff. Her approach is to align selection, development and promotion of employees with company goals. She inspires by supporting and reinforcing AMERRA’s organizational purpose of protecting and growing clients’ assets via best-in-class agribusiness investment practices while contributing a positive and measurable impact on the companies, geographies and sectors in which AMERRA invests.
Nancy is also charged with developing a culture where responsibility and employee development create a virtuous cycle. She ensures that the AMERRA team is continuously developing via mentoring, training, feedback and encouragement. She ensures staff development is well-structured, properly defined and measured so that AMERRA’s team members always knows where they stand and success is fairly rewarded.
Prior to AMERRA, Nancy was employed by Société Générale for 10 years holding various positions, the last of which as a Managing Director, leading their soft commodities business. Previously, Nancy was a Vice President at Standard Chartered Bank managing a diverse group of international commodities clients and an Associate at Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.
PAT MORABITO, PARTNER, CHIEF RISK OFFICER
With a 35+ year career in banking and natural resources investing, Pat has a long professional history of underwriting and managing risks. A member of the firm’s executive, investment and strategic investment committees, Pat serves as AMERRA’s CRO. He is responsible for identifying, evaluating, reporting and overseeing the firm’s internal and external organizational risks. Pat works closely with AMERRA’s CIO on portfolio monitoring and analysis, developing and implementing risk monitoring tools and procedures, and management reporting. He also runs point on all legal matters, fiercely defending AMERRA’s interests when required.
Whether working on a complicated grain asset recovery in Paraguay or a distressed tuna farming operation in Mexico, Pat is dedicated to ensuring capital preservation for investors. Unafraid of difficult on the ground situations in many different jurisdictions, Pat always goes the extra mile to protect the firm’s assets. Pat’s determination to mitigate risks in every transaction leads to spirited debates, but his conservative approach is balanced with a desire to underwrite the best risk-reward investment opportunities.
Pat is a seasoned investment professional who devotes time to developing AMERRA’s investment and operations teams. Mentoring the next generation allows Pat to share his passion for the business while providing invaluable insights and training, ensuring business continuity and the future success of the firm.
Prior to AMERRA, Pat honed his skills as a credit underwriter, deal originator, product salesman, risk and operations manager and asset recovery professional working for a number of international banks including KBC Bank, MeesPierson and ING Bank. He also worked closely for many years with AMERRA’s CIO and COO at Société Générale where he was Managing Director and Global Head of Commodity & Trade Finance Operation in charge of a global team of more than 300 professionals. Pat holds a BS degree in organizational management from Nyack College and a certificate in international banking from the American Institute of Banking.