Mr. Barkan’s responsibilities include Business Management (including Chair of the Operations Committee) and Investment Management (including Chair of the Investment Committee). Mr. Barkan is involved in each decision, both business and investment, made by Allagash. Mr. Barkan is intrinsically involved in investment thesis development, portfolio modeling, and investment review. Mr. Barkan is also directly involved in the day-to-day marketing and operations of the Fund and has supervisory responsibility for all investor and Board reporting.
Prior to founding Allagash Opportunity Zone Partners, Mr. Barkan was one of five Founding Principals and Investment Committee Members at Seer Capital Management from 2008-2015. Beginning as Head of Trading and Co-Head of Real Estate Investments, Mr. Barkan immediately recognized the compelling opportunity offered by the government’s Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility (“TALF”) upon its inception and developed and managed Seer’s uniquely successful TALF investing franchise. As the firm grew AUM to over $2 billion and regulatory assets to almost $4 billion, he concentrated his focus on Real Estate-based investments.
As the Head of Commercial Real Estate, Mr. Barkan ran all aspects of the portfolio – credit, analytics, trading, and risk. He planned and executed Seer’s workforce housing rehabilitation and rental strategy growing that portfolio to 1,000 units in the Southeastern U.S. He also initiated, developed, and ran the second largest CMBS B-Piece investment business globally, driving deals and approving loans backed by over $20 billion of US CRE properties. In addition, Mr. Barkan sourced, negotiated and purchased significant Mezzanine CRE Loan risk and was one of the most active traders in the mezzanine US CMBS Bond marketplace.
Prior to Seer Capital, Mr. Barkan built and ran profitable fund investment platforms at Sailfish Capital Partners, Harbert Investment Management, and The Clinton Group from 2001-2008. Over that span, Mr. Barkan built and led investment, research, trading, operations, and risk management teams with as many as 20 people and managed portfolios across the full range of fixed income and real estate sectors with peak investor equity over $1 Billion, a peak long asset portfolio over $10 Billion, and peak total market exposure of almost $20 Billion.
Notably, Mr. Barkan was an early identifier of the real estate-led economic crisis. By the beginning of 2007, he had migrated his hedge fund portfolio to be entirely short. From 1997-2001, Mr. Barkan was the Senior Portfolio Manager responsible for Commercial MBS, Residential MBS, and ABS and was a founding member of the Fixed Income Investment Committee at Pareto Partners (originally Forstmann-Leff). He helped Pareto become a top decile Core and Core-Plus Fixed Income Manager by initiating a short MBS sector allocation versus benchmarks in advance of Russia’s default and the Long-Term Credit crisis and then reversed that positioning by purchasing cheap deep-credit Mortgage-Backed Securities once the market had bottomed.
From 1988-1997, Mr. Barkan began his career as a sell-side trader at Salomon Brothers, Goldman Sachs, and ED&F Man Group trading a range of real estate debt, commodity products, and currencies. Mr. Barkan is Board Treasurer of Here Arts Center and supports Scholars at Risk and CaringKind: The Heart of Alzheimer’s Caregiving. He has worked with Cristo Rey Brooklyn High School to help students with lower income backgrounds develop financial literacy, comfort with personal financial issues, and an understanding of professional opportunities within the financial markets. Mr. Barkan graduated from Princeton University and is a member of the Triple Nine Society.