Trading in the energy sector

Lucy Mair finds out about the variety of graduate opportunities at Gazprom Marketing & Trading

Gazprom Marketing & Trading (GM&T) is a global energy trading company, owned by the world's largest gas producer, Gazprom. We chat to those responsible for recruiting this year's graduates and a current graduate to learn more about what the company has to offer.

Ben Carney

Global Resourcing Partner

Ben tells us more about the company and the opportunities GM&T has got lined up for graduates this year.

Can you tell us a bit more about GM&T?

We're a global energy trading company headquartered in London with a network of offices across Europe, the US and Asia. GM&T was founded 13 years ago and we've grown phenomenally in that time - five years ago we had around 100 employees, now we have 900 worldwide.

We trade natural gas, power, liquefied natural gas (LNG), liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), clean energy and carbon, and oil. We also trade FX and derivatives because we're a global company with foreign exposure. As well as our marketing and trading business, we have a retail operation that sells gas and power to industrial and commercial businesses, such as Heinz, Chelsea Football Club and Nandos, as well as German households.

Why should graduates interested in markets and trading consider the energy sector?

I think a lot of people are looking for stability. The financial markets are experiencing downturn due to the economic climate, but the energy markets are based on supply and demand. As long as there's demand for power, our business is constantly going to be there and we're working hard to make sure that it continues to grow.

What makes GM&T a good employer for graduates to join?

Firstly, at GM&T graduates hit the ground running. You'll join your desk straight away, have exposure to senior management and start adding value to the business immediately.

Second, we're a growing company and we offer graduates the opportunity to develop within a dynamic organisation. Because we're a young company, your career path isn't set in stone by the HR team: while we're there to support you, we encourage people to step out of their comfort zone and drive their own careers.

Third, we have a strong set of values that underpin everything that we do. We're committed to teamwork, communication, innovation and a passion for excellence. We believe these values have helped us to deliver the ambitious targets we've set ourselves and we recruit against them.

What areas of the business can graduates join?

We recruit graduates across the business, not just into trading roles. We're running four graduate schemes this year: Commercial and Front Office Analytics, which involves working in the markets across the products that we trade; Professional Analytics, which includes finance, tax and internal audit; Technical Experts, which covers our IT developer and analyst roles; and Project Managers, including areas such as HR, risk and compliance.

For all of our graduate programmes we look for candidates with numerical, analytical and problem-solving skills, but we recruit from a range of degree disciplines. In addition, we look for candidates who want to build a career in the energy industry and show willingness to work in accordance with our values.

Paul McEllin

Asset Analyst

Paul joined GM&T in September 2011 after graduating from the University of Edinburgh with a degree in economic history.

Why did you want to work in the energy sector?

While at university I became interested in environmental economics and energy policy. I find the energy sector interesting because it's underpinned by macroeconomic and geopolitical influences on the markets.

I wanted to work in a role involving the qualitative and quantitative analytical skills I gained from my degree, and I was keen to work with commodities because they're very tangible products. My work isn't just about data on a screen, but the physical delivery of materials around the world.

What attracted you to GM&T?

GM&T is a young, dynamic company that has achieved significant growth in a short period of time, and it's backed by the world's largest gas producer, which has ambitions to also become the world's largest energy provider. Together, these factors make GM&T an exciting company to be a part of.

Most companies do a hard sell for their graduate programmes, but I was struck by how genuine GM&T was when I attended its assessment centre. GM&T really does value every individual and encourages you to take on responsibility and make your own opportunities.

What does your role as an asset analyst involve?

I'm on the Commercial and Front Office Analytics graduate programme, in the Macro Analytics team. In Macro Analytics we focus on long-term analysis of the markets and strategic research.

I've been involved in producing daily and weekly reports on the coal, gas and power markets, as well as providing price forecasts to help with the valuation of possible assets for acquisition. On the graduate programme we're encouraged to gain experience across the commodities that we trade and deal in, so I've worked with gas, liquified natural gas and coal so far.

How is the graduate programme structured?

All the graduates were brought together for a general meet-and-greet on our first day. Then, on the second day we met our teams and joined our desks. At GM&T graduate training is built into our working life, so it's ongoing over the first four months of the 18-month scheme. I received technical training and support at my desk, but then met up with the other graduates for general training including trading simulation days and team-building activities.

The best thing about the graduate training programme is that you continue meeting up with others on the programme every couple of weeks. Everyone's still finding their feet so you can share your experiences, and you end up with a network of people dotted around the business, which I've found really helpful.

What skills and qualities are important in your job?

You need to be disciplined in your approach to work, have a strong analytical ability, and be able to think and act independently. It's also important to be adaptable because the markets can change very quickly.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

One of the best things about my role is that I'm involved in projects that could further increase the size of the company. It's extremely satisfying to know that I'm directly contributing to our growth, and it keeps me on my toes because I'm always on the lookout for new business opportunities.