10.11.2021 | Trainee alumni at Axpo Basile Despond

“Having a network across divisions and countries is priceless!”

Basile Despond studied physics at ETH and is part of our 7th trainee generation. Since completing his traineeship in data science in the trading area, Basile has joined Axpo’s trading and sales department as a quantitative researcher and data scientist. He is passionate about optimizing renewable energy through machine learning and is fascinated by energy trading strategies, especially arbitrage opportunities. Basile particularly appreciated the opportunity to work in different offices during his traineeship: "​The traineeship allowed me to visit and work in many Axpo offices across Europe such as Madrid, Oslo, Genova, Milan and Lyon.​​" The technical expertise and energy sector knowledge he gained as a trainee continues to be of great value to him in his permanent position at Axpo.

Basile Despond

Function: Quant Researcher / Data Scientist

Trainee Alumni: Trainee Data Science Trading

Background: MSc in Physics at ETH

Assignments: Advanced Analytics, Structured Energy Trading​

What was your motivation to start a traineeship at Axpo?

The energy sector is of utmost importance in our day-to-day life. Axpo is an international leader in energy trading and there has never been a more exciting time to work in this industry. The traineeship program particularly attracted me as it built on my quantitative background and personal interests.

Also, the traineeship has been running for many years and is well known throughout the company.

What is the most memorable/valuable experience you had during your traineeship?

Being able to travel to so many different offices helped me see Axpo as a truly international company.

It was enriching to work with colleagues from all over Europe.

How do the skills you learned during the traineeship support you in your tasks today?

Working on different use cases in various teams allowed me to build a broad understanding of the power market. This proves very useful in my current position as we seek opportunities across many different markets. Also, working with skilled data scientists throughout the traineeship allowed me to improve my technical skills enormously.

Why was the traineeship the ideal career start for you? How did it help you obtain your current position?

The traineeship was the perfect career start. Working with different teams on different projects allowed me to understand what I liked working on, and where my strengths and weaknesses lie. At the end of it, I was better able to decide which department at Axpo was the best fit for my skills and interests.

My current role and responsibilities would have been a lot harder, had I not been through the traineeship.

How has your everyday work changed when you compare your day-to-day during the traineeship and your permanent position now?

It hasn’t changed much. From the start of the traineeship, I was viewed as a full-time employee and given a lot of responsibility. I initially thought I would have less time for continued learning once my traineeship was over, but I realized Axpo is deeply committed to on-the-job training.

How does the trainee community and network you cultivated during your traineeship support you in your work now?

Building a network across divisions and countries so early in your career is priceless. The trainee community is very strong and we help each other whenever needed. If I face a problem outside my area of expertise, I know who to call.


Did Basile’s experience with his traineeship at Axpo spark your curiosity? You can find more information about it here. We look forward to hopefully meeting you during the recruitment process!

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