Paris-based commodity trade finance arranger Cofarco has opened its first international office in Geneva.

The new office, which will help the company strengthen its Swiss commodity trading and bank network, is headed by Guillaume de La Ville, who started his new role today (November 2).

As Cofarco’s senior business developer, de La Ville brings 20 years’ experience in both international banking and commodity trading. He previously spent close to 10 years in BNP Paribas’ commodity trade finance team in Singapore, Paris, Geneva and New York.

He then moved to the trading environment in 2004, working as finance director for the likes of Gunvor and oil trader Summa Group, and as head of trade finance at Essar’s Geneva trading office PeaKom.

De La Ville has also been teaching commodity finance at Geneva University since 2009.

Cofarco executive partner Frédéric Blanchi says: “Our presence in Geneva is a stepping stone for the development of our firm and we are delighted to have Guillaume joining the team as he will be an insightful and knowledgeable resource for our clients and our markets. This expansion will allow us to meet the growing demand from commodity clients for alternative sources of funding and credit protection. This move also fits with the company’s commitment to build a leading franchise as finance and risk solution providers to the commodities markets.”