What is your general view on the current commodity trading markets in the current exceptional situation? What are in your opinion the top 3 risks for commodity traders at the moment?
KH: We have seen a lot of volatility in commodity prices which means it is a good time for trading business in general. I would say that counter party credit risk should be considered one of the top risks as we have seen, and probably will see more companies claim bankruptcy. Delivery risk is another issue. This could mean that fewer vessels and fewer storage space is available, which causes higher than usual cost to transport or store. And, of course, market risk, which is always one of the primary risks for trading businesses.
What are the key changes you’ve seen in the last couple of months in your customers’ habits, requests, needs? How are you adapting to this new demand (supposing there is a notable difference in concerns)?
KH: Most employees of the clients have been working from home just like us, and doing their best in difficult situations, the most difficult of which may be when human intervention is required. For example, an operations team may need to coordinate to dispatch enough trucks and drivers to keep commodities moving. But, from a CTRM vendor’s point of view, it has been nearer to business as usual for Enuit. Being able to support our clients through reliable internet access has played a vital role these days in our business continuity.
The solutions you provide are suitable for various commodities, what sort of process and structure differences have you had to account for?
Two things, the risk engine and the operations tool. Entrade’s risk engine was well designed to handle any type of commodities. Our operation/scheduling tool is highly configurable to handle the detailed processes for the operation teams who manage different commodities. But the system is not the most important. The most important thing to helped ENUIT become a leader in the CTRM industry is that “we listen”. We listen to our clients. Our clients are dealing with these complex commodities daily and we are grateful to learn from them.
Most of the world has been on lockdown at one point or another in the last few weeks. How have your teams adapted to these challenging times?
KH: Since most of our clients are continuing to use ENTRADE daily, the amount of the work supporting these clients has not lessened. The only difference is that we are all working from home now. Thanks to the modern communication tools, we are able to collaborate efficiently and effectively. We are making a great effort to meet the demand globally. Onboarding new employees who joined ENUIT recently has been a challenge. Some, including myself, feel it is more productive, in many ways, to work from home. Our recent experience may have a profound affect on how and where we work after everything returns to normal.