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Executive MSc in International Finance (MIF)

MIF Alumni in the Spotlight: Erwin Potjer (Holland)

Short summary about yourself

My name is Erwin Potjer, I've been trading in the financial derivatives markets since 2006 at different independent trading houses. I am active as a market maker on listed equity and equity index products. Currently I am employed by Webb Traders and based in Amsterdam.

Could you tell us more about your educational and professional background?

I hold a BSc in Business Administration from Erasmus University. When studying for a Master at Erasmus University I was offered a job as trainee trader at Saen Options. While I was successful in that job, it  interfered with my studies and I didn't finish my master at Erasmus. At Saen Options I received training from some of the best traders in the business. I've also always focussed on academic theories and modelling of derivatives so by now I have lots of practical experience as well as a very well developed theoretical background in derivatives.

During my studies at the MIF I concluded the CFA program would be a logical extension and I received my CFA charter in 2013.

Why did you decide to pursue the MIF programme at the Amsterdam Business School?

After Saen Options was acquired by All Options in 2009 I quickly came to the conclusion that my employment at that company was not going to last. I was sure I wanted to stay active in the financial industry and I considered options such as switching to a different field such as Asset Management. In anticipation of any future search for a different job I decided that I needed to enhance my academic credentials. As I wanted to stay employed in the meantime, a part-time programme was a necessity. The MIF program was a very suitable candidate; it would expand my knowledge of Finance far beyond financial derivatives, it had and has an excellent staff, and its small class sizes were also an advantage.

What was the highlight of your studies?

The Econometrics and Advanced Econometrics courses were my favourites. Not only are those fields increasingly important in pricing and trading, but also in risk and portfolio management. I also liked it a lot because in the end I am really a numbers guy.

Who was your favourite professor?

Simon Broda. It's probably not a coincidence he taught my econometrics courses and he also became my thesis supervisor.

Could you tell us more about your current additional activities (besides your job-if you have any)?

During my time at the MIF programme I also met Yvonne on a holiday. We're now married with two young children so that takes up a lot of time. Besides that I am still involved with the MIF programme as an alumni ambassador. If I have time left I enjoy movies and strategy games.

How would you describe yourself in 3 words?

Numerical, dedicated and liberal, I guess. If you ask me a week from now I'll likely come up with three different words.

What is your favourite place?

Probably some nice, small town for winter sports.

What is your favourite sport?

Field hockey and skiing.

What is your advice for potential MIF students?

Don't hesitate to interact with your fellow students and lecturers during class. The small class sizes are an asset so make sure you take advantage of that.