Welcome to our Q&A series, a sneak peek into individuals shaping Sparta’s success. In this edition, we are delighted to introduce David Povey, Sparta’s Crude Oil Commodity Owner. Specialising in trading crude oil, David collaborated closely with producers, traders, and refiners, gaining invaluable insights into the industry. Currently, David is at the forefront of a pivotal mission, overseeing the launch of the Crude vertical tool at Sparta. This task marks a significant milestone in Sparta’s growth journey.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN WITH THE COMPANY?
One whole Sparta month.
CAN YOU EXPLAIN YOUR ROLE?
Front and centre on our new Sparta for Crude vertical (certainly the commercial part), which we anticipate will be a further step-change for Sparta and is vital for our growth targets (so, no pressure then!)
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED IN THE INDUSTRY?/CAN YOU GIVE ME A RUNDOWN OF YOUR CAREER PATH UP UNTIL THIS POINT?
I trained as a Geologist then started drilling exploration wells offshore North Sea. From there an MBA a pivotal turning point that steered me towards the commercial aspects of the oil business. In this new phase, I specialised in trading crude oil, both in physical and derivatives markets, working closely with numerous producers, traders, and refiners.
This journey has provided me with a unique perspective that bridges the technical and commercial realms of the energy industry. I am excited to leverage my background and experience to contribute to our shared objectives and further our success.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE OUR COMPANY CULTURE?
Confident, focused, fleet, resolute.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE PART OF WORKING AT OUR COMPANY?
WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO JOIN SPARTA?
It’s a very different challenge for me, but it’s in an industry I know well. I believe it’s imperative to keep growing, both personally and professionally – it’s what keeps you young! Sparta has demonstrated its capability to deliver truly valuable trading tools, offering timely and relevant information that empowers confident risk targeting. I can’t help but think about how much I would have benefited from these tools when I was sitting at a trading desk!
WHAT’S ONE THING PEOPLE DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU THAT THEY WOULD BE SURPRISED TO FIND OUT?
My career actually pre-dates university: paper boy, pig farmer, tree surgeon … in that order.
WHAT ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF IN YOUR CAREER SO FAR?
Drilling several big oil discoveries on the Norwegian Haltenbanken was fun!
These experiences involved the discovery of significant oil reserves, a big achievement in the oil and gas industry. The excitement and sense of accomplishment that came with successfully drilling several major oil discoveries in this challenging offshore environment are moments that I remember fondly!
WHAT PIECE OF ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO YOUR YOUNGER SELF?
Carpe diem! … the diems don’t hang about (and accelerate away!)
WHAT’S ONE THING YOU WISH PEOPLE KNEW ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It’s the commercial bit in the coding/commercial continuum.
WHAT DO YOU THINK CRUDE TRADER WILL MOST ENJOY ABOUT THE INCOMING SPARTA FOR CRUDE TOOL?
The ability to see at once the entire global pattern of potential crude arbitrage flow. It will enable rapid assimilation of information, accelerated decision-making and the confident focusing of risk.
By having such a comprehensive view of the market dynamics, one can swiftly identify opportunities and potential pitfalls across various regions and timeframes. This not only streamlines operational efficiency but also instils a sense of confidence in the decision-making process.
WHAT’S THE MOST INTERESTING PROJECT YOU HAVE WORKED ON HERE SO FAR?
The crude vertical: it’s a real opportunity to do something special and disruptive … the market (once again) is in a state of turmoil and flux, and we might just help bring a semblance of form and order to it.
WHAT’S ONE THING THAT HAS SURPRISED YOU ABOUT YOUR CURRENT ROLE?
The Rachel and Phil had made such a great start on building the tool!
WHAT ARE YOU GOALS FOR THE NEXT FEW MONTHS/YEARS?
Three immediate goals: Get the crude vertical to market. Get the crude vertical to market. Get the crude vertical to market.
HOW HAS YOUR ROLE EVOLVED OVER TIME SINCE YOU HAVE BEEN HERE?
Well, one Sparta month is of course equivalent to one earthly year, so the evolution is brisk. The imperative to “crack-on” is clear … there’s little time for opining in ivory towers here. It became clear very quickly that my sleeves would be permanently rolled-up.
WHAT, IF ANYTHING, ARE YOU CURRENTLY BINGE-WATCHING OR READING?
TV is not a major part of my life … but I do go to the cinema regularly (and that’s been pretty special recently … I’m thinking “Barbenheimer”, and Killers of the Flower Moon especially (watch your over-hydration before Flower Moon though, its 3 ½ hours long!)
I’m reading “The Coming Wave”. It would appear that AI really is something … eeek!
WHAT’S THE LAST SONG YOU LISTENED TO?
‘Sweet Sounds of Heaven’ by the Rolling Stones & Lady Gaga … Jagger’s still got it!
WHAT’S ONE THING ON YOUR BUCKET LIST?
At the risk of being a little philosophical: meaning/purpose/happiness.
David is our Crude Oil Commodity Owner and can be contacted at email@example.com
Sparta is a live, market intelligence and forecasting platform that enables oil traders, refiners, banks, hedge funds and wholesalers to have access to real-time and global actionable insights to capture market opportunities before others.
To find out how Sparta can allow you to make smarter trading decisions, faster, contact us for a demonstration at firstname.lastname@example.org