Peter Stern, Chairman of the Board
Before founding Stern Bank, Peter managed a number of successful, international firms over the course of his 30-year career. In the 1980s, Peter created American Customs Service Inc., which focused on freight forwarding and customs brokerage. He sold the business in 1993 and founded another freight-forwarding and customs brokerage firm, Express Service Forwarding Inc., which represented foreign airlines and steamship lines, among other industries. Today, he is President of Express Trade Capital, Inc, a New York based trade finance firm that provides factoring, purchase order funding, and special project programs to domestic and international corporate clients.
Peter has significant experience evaluating investment grade, high‑yield and convertible debt offerings, leveraged acquisition finance and syndicated loan transactions as President of Garantia LLC, a New York investment firm. In 2016, for instance, Peter concluded a transaction with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (ERBD) to purchase distressed loans the bank had made to an Eastern European supermarket chain. Peter purchased EBRD’s $56,000,000 loan for approximately $9,000,000 and converted it to an approximate 25% equity stake, making him a major shareholder. That same year he negotiated a transaction with the Bank of Cyprus (represented by Alfa Bank) to purchase a $25,000,000 distressed loan, secured by the borrower’s corporate real estate, for $8,000,000.
Peter also maintains an active role in a New York property investment firm that actively invests in distressed, non-performing or poorly performing mortgages originated in the U.S. market. That venture currently has hundreds of notes outstanding with a face value of tens of millions of dollars.
He is a graduate of the Transportation College in Odessa and holds a U.S. Custom Brokerage License.
Drew Cohen, Chief Executive Officer
Drew is an investment and trade finance attorney with experience in a wide range of industries and deal types. In his previous capacity, he was responsible for structuring and executing complex cross-border transactions as well as providing legal and regulatory advice. He is a former law clerk to the Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court of South Africa as well as to a federal judge at the United States Court of International Trade.
Drew is a graduate of The George Washington Law School and School of Business where he earned his JD and MBA as an EURC Scholar. He graduated with a BA in Economics and Political Science summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from the same institution where he was a George Gamow Fellow.
He is a member of the New York State Bar.
Alexander J. Silver, Managing Director
Alex has vast experience across all verticals of trade finance – having acted as importer, exporter, and financier in Asia, Europe, Africa and North America. He spent the early part of his career arranging the export of cashew nuts and other agro-commodities from West Africa, as well as assisting West African importers source alternative finance for their imports from Asia and Europe. In 2009, Alex founded an Israeli-based trade finance brokerage firm that specialized in assisting clients to procure finance facilities for their international trade transactions. Alex’s firm arranged hundreds of millions of dollars per year in letter of credit and guarantee financing for importers, and assisted exporter in obtaining forfaiting and factoring facilities.
Alex is an ICC Certified Documentary Credit Specialist (CDCS) and a Certified Specialist in Documentary Guarantees (CSDG).
Angel Rodriquez Hyman, CPA, CFE, Chief Financial Officer
Angel has spent two decades specializing in corporate fiscal management and team leadership. He spent his early career as an auditor at KPMG where he planned and executed financial statement audits of Fortune 500 companies, and as a finance manager for General Electric where he was named as one of Puerto Rico’s top financial analysts. Angel then served as a financial team leader at two major telecommunications companies, responsible for all accounting-related operations. Most recently, in his capacity as Chief Financial Officer of Latin Media House, he and his team counteracted a multi-million dollar negative cashflow, guided the acquisition of a digital media company, and led all accounting and due diligence processes.
Angel graduated magna cum laude from the University of Puerto Rico with a BA in Business Administration.
He is a Certified Public Accountant and Certified Fraud Examiner.
Luz M. del Valle, CAMS, CICA, Chief Compliance Officer
Luz has over 16 years of experience in the banking industry. She started her career as a bank examiner for the Office of the Commissioner of Financial Institutions of Puerto Rico. As an examiner, she became a subject matter expert on banking and soundness examination procedures, risk management, compliance and information technology systems. In 2016, Luz joined Advantage Group as its Chief Compliance Officer.
Luz also operated Anstrall Consulting Group, a compliance consulting firm that provided risk management services, regulatory compliance guidelines, information technology, and cyber security processes for the financial service industry in Puerto Rico.
Luz graduated from the University of Puerto Rico-Cayey, where she earned a BBA in Accounting with honors.
She is a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist and a Certified Internal Control Auditor.
Veronica P. Ospina-Hernandez, Vice-President of Operations
Veronica has over eight years of experience in the financial industry, primarily in international banking and investment services. She has worked as an investment professional in Puerto Rico for Banco Santander and Citibank.
Veronica completed her BA in English Communications and Linguistics with a minor in Business at the University of Puerto Rico and is currently pursuing her JD at the University of Puerto Rico School of Law.
She holds a Series 7 License as general securities representative.
Sunita Mehta, Vice President of FI & Trade
Sunita has over 10 years of experience in sales and trade finance. Her career in trade started at WestLB, a European commercial bank, settling trades and managing documentation. At Intesa Soditic she established the company as an active participant in the secondary market for loan syndications and forfaiting. Most recently at United Bank Limited (UBL), the second largest private bank in Pakistan, Sunita was responsible for FI relationships and compliance for correspondent banking.
Sunita graduated from The University of Reading with a BSc in Business Economics.