ABN Amro has announced plans for the expansion of its global commodity finance business, becoming, it claims, one of the first global financial institutions to provide services to all three links in the commodity supply chain: producer, trader and consumer.

Prabhat Vira, head of global commodity finance at ABN, expects to double the size of the current business within the next three years by focusing on the consumer end of the commodity supply chain.

“Our focus on the consumer countries, notably those in North America and Europe, will create one of the only total supply chain offerings available in the world today,” he says. “As a result, we expect to hire a number of key commodity finance specialists to service this new client base over the next six months.”

As part of this expansion, ABN Amro has announced two senior hires.

Vandita Pant has been appointed head of commodity finance advisory, responsible for ABN Amro’s worldwide network of global commodity finance specialists. ABN claims it is unique among providers of commodity finance by having specialist advisers in 22 countries that help to tailor financing arrangements to the specific needs of local clients.

Pant will also continue the bank’s innovation in providing finance through commodity monetisation, where ABN takes ownership of the commodity between the supplier and purchaser stage of the supply chain. ABN Amro executed its first transaction of this kind for Brazilian orange juice exporter, Citrosuco, in 2004.

Pant was previously hub chief risk officer, Japan and Korea, for ABN, and will move to London from Tokyo in her new role.

Bistra Ivanova joins as business analyst from West LB. Ivanova will analyse all participants in the global commodity supply chain to help drive strategy for the global commodity finance business.