Honey Duan

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About Honey Duan

Honey joined Vattenfall in January 2019 as an Originator with a primary focus on gas. She graduated with a Masters in Physics from the University of Cambridge, UK, and also spent a year in a research laboratory at Harvard University.

“After graduating, my career saw me gain experience in different parts of the energy industry as well as the steel sector. I also worked in different countries all over the world, including Brazil, before returning to Germany after my husband started a new job here. I was on maternity leave after having my second child when a friend suggested I considered applying to Vattenfall as he said it was a good employer and I had an energy background.

Being an originator is a very commercial role which is quite far removed from my academic background in physics, but the numeracy and logical thinking that my job requires definitely draws on certain aspects of my degree!

My role is to develop non-standard energy products. If you wanted to make a sandwich, for instance, you would go to a shop and buy a loaf of bread and a block of cheese and so on, but you could not buy just two slices of bread or a single slice of cheese! As an originator I look to source the different ingredients to put together a deal to give the buyer exactly what they want in terms of energy.

Dynamic and international

You have to be adaptable, learn quickly and also be able to bounce back from things not working out. Not every deal you work on will be successful so you have to have patience and resilience. But every day is different and every deal I work on is different. I also get to spend time a lot of time on the trading floor which I love – it’s dynamic, stimulating and very international!

With two small kids, the flexibility I have at work is really valuable to me and the nature of my job means I am not necessarily tied to my desk at set hours. If I occasionally need to leave work early to do the nursery pick-up, there are no sideways glances from colleagues! To have the trust from the management and your peers to be able to do that is great.

Wherever I’ve worked in the world I’ve always made sure I join an orchestra as I’m a keen musician and play the violin, viola and piano – it’s really important for me to have a focus other than work and family.”

Honey works within:

Customer & SolutionsExplore

Career path

After I moved back to Germany I was looking for a role where I could draw on my background and expertise. My role is to structure and execute non-standard deals which bring value to the business that our traders do not have access to via the regular traded market. It is effectively mid to long term strategic trading so you need patience to put together the right deal for your customers. Every day and every deal is different!
After working in Germany for a period, my husband had an opportunity to take a job in Brazil and although it was a bit of a leap of faith for me it was also a great learning experience. I was working in a new country, a new industry and having to deal with a new language. It also gave me the opportunity to manage a large number of people for the first time.
Moving to a competitor is never an easy decision, but this was a great next step for me to get involved in trading. In this role, I was also responsible for vessel chartering – a completely new area to get my teeth into. I love learning new skills. It keeps me on my toes!
I was looking for a more commercial role in the LNG industry when this opportunity came along. I managed the relationship between E.ON Ruhrgas, LNG regassification terminal operators and the other terminal shippers, and particularly enjoyed the extensive interaction with external stakeholders.