ESSEC Asia-Pacific welcomed Mr. Wladimir Blanckaert on 11th February to share his experience and knowledge with students as part of a series of professional talks organised by Career Services at ESSEC Asia-Pacific.
With his rich experience in commodity trading, Mr. Blanckaert had much to share on his professional experience, and gave students very practical advice. He spoke about how he came to become a trader, how he succeeds as a trader and how he makes money as a trader.
Mr. Blanckaert then gave students an introduction to the ABCs of sugar trading, explaining the difference between fundamentals and speculation in commodity markets, raw sugar as compared to white sugar, as well as forward and spot positions. As part of the talk, Mr. Blanckaert asked students to try out an exercise to give students a taste of the kind of calculations and work done in commodities trading. To Mr. Blanckaert, “If you want to become a physical commodities trader, you must understand what production is going to be, and the only way to be aware of such information is through business partners,” He explained that fundamentally, what matters is the profit and loss.
Mr. Blanckaert also encouraged students to be different, to dare to pursue experiences in different environments and step out of their comfort zones.
He explained that volatility is the main factor generating profit and loss, and that the ability to obtain information first is what matters the most in the business. Mr. Blanckaert emphasised that the secret to success in any business is to know or obtain key information before your competitors. Following this, Mr. Blanckaert gave an overview of the development and history of BTG Pactual. BTG Pactual started the Global Commodities Trading subsidiary in 2013, as part of the Sales and Trading division.
Through the professional talk by Mr. Blanckaert, students at ESSEC Asia-Pacific had the opportunity to find out more about what a career in commodities trading is like, and learned much from the experience and advice that he shared.