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GEM’s Gems September 2014 – Eric Bassingthwaighte

August 28, 2014
Eric Bassingthwaighte

Eric Bassingthwaighte

Although he only began the GEM Program a couple months ago, Cohort XII’s Eric Bassingthwaighte is already excelling in the program.

“The GEM program will formally provide the foundation needed to take my business and my career to the next level,” he said. “I have really enjoyed my experience thus far and look forward to learning more from the program and my classmates.”

Bassingthwaighte, 36,  is currently the Principal of Fuel Risk Management (FRM). FRM is an advisory firm for transportation-intensive, midsize companies and employs the best practices of large commodity risk managers to help clients financially acquire fuel at more favorable prices. On behalf of its clients, FRM trades options on futures and futures contracts on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange to manage price risk of diesel, gasoline, and related products.

Bassingthwaighte, who holds a degree in sociology from Duke University, chose the GEM Program to further his education in the energy industry.

“The GEM program has been fantastic,” he said. “I can best describe my experience as being better able to ‘connect the dots.’ With so many variables intricately correlated to one another, the GEM program has given me better understanding of how the global energy markets function under certain conditions.”

Briefly describe your current role and responsibilities.

My role as the principal of FRM has given me the unique experience of actively engaging in all functions of the company. I am solely responsible for every aspect of FRM including but not limited to: marketing, trading, compliance, relationship management, and sales. I have successfully implemented FRM’s hedging strategies into my clients’ operations. I create all marketing material and methodology, originate and develop client relationships, perform technical and fundamental analysis for the hedging strategy, and design and executive trades for my corporate clients.

What do you enjoy most about working in the energy industry?
Managing my clients’ exposure to fuel price risk has been very rewarding. I truly enjoy the fast-paced and dynamic nature of the energy markets. It is quite an experience to hear major news hit the wire and see prices react in real time, especially when you consider today’s volatility.

What are some of your favorite things to do during cohort weekends?
When class ends for the day, I only have two questions: What vegetarian restaurant am I going to? How much sleep can I get tonight?

What are some of the things that you never forget to bring to cohort weekends?
That’s easy: Skinnygirl™ Water Enhancer; Flavor: Blueberry Acai; 5 Calories, 24 Servings; It is the most embarrassing part of my trip to the grocery store (especially since I buy at least 10 at time).

Please share a story about GEM that will entertain other students.
After our first cohort weekend, I went on a trip to Hawaii with my wife. We stayed in Oahu near the North Shore. As soon as I spotted the Kawailoa Wind Farm, I was obsessed about getting as close to it as possible. After multiple failed attempts in my rental car, I hit the Internet. I tracked down the Community Outreach Coordinator for First Wind and asked if I could visit the wind farm. Unfortunately, we connected too late. The story has a good ending since the coordinator guaranteed my access to the wind farm upon my next trip to Oahu.


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