Imara Holdings, the Botswana-listed, Pan-African investment bank and asset management group, recently launched a niche fund focused on small-to-medium-sized mining and other companies that often remain unnoticed by global funds that typically allocate resources towards more prominent resource firms. Imara, which among other vehicles offers a Zimbabwe Fund, a Nigeria Fund, an East Africa Fund, and a long-only Opportunities Fund that covers a range of countries and sectors, has $135 million in assets under management, and $750m under administration.

The timing of the fund, whose commodity exposure includes gold, platinum group metals, coal, ferrous metals, chrome oil and gas, could hardly be more ideal, explains its manager Bruce Williamson, who has 25 years of experience as a mining analyst. Williamson argues that the year’s commodity rebound is more secular, rather than cyclical based. [Commodities are] not a temporary phenomenon. The long-term fundamentals are strongly positive. [And] the big, long-term upside is among juniors and mid-tier miners,” he explained.