Commodities moves: BAML hires new US head, Ice names model risk head, and more

Latest job changes across the industry


Mark Sickafoose has joined Bank of America Merrill Lynch as head of US gas and power, with effect from February 5, the bank confirmed. He will be based in Houston and report to Rupen Tanna and George Cultraro, co-heads of global commodities. 

In his most recent position, Sickafoose was a Houston-based energy trader at Vitol, where he worked from June 2010 to March 2017. Prior to that he was a managing director at Citigroup Commodities.

Intercontinental Exchange names model risk head

Chris Schlegel has become director of model risk management at Intercontinental Exchange, where he has worked since July 2016, previously as director of global risk and data analytics. Before that he worked at Southern Company as a senior manager in corporate enterprise risk management.

Engie keeps growing in Asia

Gordon Waters joins utility giant Engie in February as chief executive of the Asia-Pacific platform of the firm’s global energy management business unit, the company has announced. Based in Singapore, his focus will be to continue to grow Engie’s Asia-Pacific presence and market activities.

CFTC picks Sklar as senior counsel

US Commodity Futures Trading Commission chairman Christopher Giancarlo has announced that Maggie Sklar will serve as his senior counsel.

Sklar previously served as an associate director in the Office of International Affairs, where she oversaw the CFTC’s engagement with the Board of the International Organization of Securities Commissions and the Financial Stability Board. Prior to joining the CFTC, she represented financial institutions, banks, executives and energy companies at several law firms.

Giancarlo said Sklar’s skills and experience in cross-border issues would be useful to help advance the CFTC’s mission as it responds to the European Union’s developing financial services regulation and to Brexit.

EEX appoints agricultural head and commodities manager

The European Energy Exchange has appointed Peter Blogg as senior manager, agricultural commodities. Blogg, who was previously at CME Group, will be based in London and will report to Sascha Siegel, head of agricultural commodities.

EEX has also hired Isabella Kurek-Smith as senior key account manager for global commodities. Kurek-Smith previously worked at LCH. She will be based in London in the new role and will report to Thomas Schmitz, head of sales, global commodities.

Chaudhry joins Nomura as Asia infrastructure head

Anoop Chaudhry

Nomura has named Anoop Chaudhry (pictured) head of infrastructure and utilities for Asia excluding Japan, advising clients from the sector across all of the bank’s products. He will be based in Hong Kong and will report to Kenji Teshima, the head of investment banking for Asia excluding Japan, according to an internal company memo.

Chaudhry previously worked at Barclays where his most recent position was group head of Asia-Pacific utilities and infrastructure. He has also held roles at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers and Credit Suisse.

Dunn to chair Baltic Exchange Advisory Council

Duncan Dunn

Duncan Dunn (pictured) has been elected chairman of the Baltic Exchange Advisory Council, the governing body that oversees the Baltic Exchange. Acquired by Singapore Exchange in November 2016, the Baltic Exchange provides maritime market information for the trading and settlement of physical and derivatives contracts.

Dunn replaces Lambros Varnavides who has held the position since November 2017. Dunn is a senior director at shipping broker SSY Futures and has served as Baltic Exchange vice-chairman since 2017.

Mark Jackson, the Baltic Exchange’s chief executive, said: “Duncan Dunn has been an energetic member of the Baltic Board for a number of years; is highly experienced in the freight derivatives market; and has an intimate understanding of the needs of the broad Baltic Exchange membership.”

Dunn said the Baltic Exchange’s transition from a member-owned organisation into a new ownership structure “will not be without challenges”, but added: “I am confident that the Baltic will continue to serve the interests of its members and the wider shipping community. As a member of the forward freight agreement community I will continue to promote their use to a global audience.”

Dunn has worked in the derivatives industry since 1986 in both broking and fund management roles, at companies including Rudolf Wolff Fund Management, Union Cal and Man Financial.

Martin moves from WGC to LME market post

The London Metal Exchange is hiring Robin Martin as head of market development, the company said in a statement. He is set to take up the new position on March 19, a spokeswoman said. His most recent role is at the World Gold Council, as managing director of market infrastructure. 

LME also announced that Paul MacGregor, formerly head of sales, left the firm as of January 2018.

Barclays hires in industrials

Kirk Meighan has joined Barclays Investment Bank as managing director, industrials, a spokesman confirmed. He reports to John Welsh, co-head of the global industrial group at Barclays, and is based in New York.

Meighan was previously managing director, industrials at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey. He has been an investment banker for around 30 years, and has also worked at Salomon Brothers, Lehman Brothers, Bank of America Securities and Deutsche Bank.

Itochu’s Yew jumps to AOT Energy

Crude oil trader Joshua Yew has left Japanese trading house Itochu Corp and will join AOT Energy in Singapore from February, according to trade sources.

Yew has been at Itochu, Japan’s third-largest trading house, since 2013, spending three years in operations before moving to the front office, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Chicago commissioner joins Quarles & Brady energy practice

A former Illinois commerce commissioner has joined the energy, environment and natural resources practice group of US law firm Quarles & Brady, the firm announced. Sherina Maye Edwards has joined the firm’s Chicago office as a partner.

Edwards focuses her practice on electric reliability, water, natural gas and critical infrastructure issues. She is experienced in issues affecting the energy and public utility industry including grid modernisation, natural gas infrastructure, cyber security, reliability and supplier and workforce diversity.

Prior to joining the firm, Edwards served a five-year term on the Illinois Commerce Commission, making her the youngest commissioner ever appointed in the state of Illinois. 

In 2016, Edwards was appointed by US president Barack Obama and secretary of transportation Anthony Foxx as co-chair of the Department of Transportation’s voluntary information-sharing system working group.

Edwards founded both the Women’s Energy Summit and the Women’s Energy Network of Chicago.

B2C2 hires new Japan CEO

Phil Gillespie

Cryptocurrency market maker B2C2 has hired Phillip Gillespie (pictured) as Japan chief executive with effect from January 29. Based in Tokyo, he will report to B2C2 founder Max Boonen.

The position of Japan CEO is a new role as the company launches operations in the country, which it sees as a major growth opportunity.

“The legitimacy of the market is substantially higher here than anywhere else in the world,” Gillespie said in a telephone interview. “When you have a situation like that you start attracting not just speculators but also businesses and
fintech innovation that want to use crypto not just purely for a speculative bubble … quite large tech firms are interested in discussing how we can help facilitate their liquidity provision,” he said.

BlackRock alumni set up Prime Factor

Former BlackRock fixed-income experts Adam Grimsley and Michael Wong have set up the cryptocurrency hedge fund Prime Factor Capital alongside Nic Niedermowwe, a former derivatives trader at RWE and crypto market making business owner.

Grimsley said the fund is aiming for an institutional quality market exposure strategy and to pinpoint the long-term winners in cryptocurrencies, screening out long-term potential losers.

Grimsley most recently worked as a senior fixed-income specialist at Legal & General Investment Management, and prior to that he spent over eight years at BlackRock as a fixed-income specialist. Wong was previously senior portfolio manager and head of fixed income asset allocation at BlackRock.

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