– An article by Ali Golkarieh, current MIF student, participant in CFA Research Challenge –

A group 5 of MIF students represented IE this year at the CFA Research Challenge (Group members: Ali Golkarieh – Canada, Cristina Ameneiro – Venezuela/Spain, Yann Coquoz – U.S/Switzerland/Czech Republic, Stefan Culibrk – Serbia  and Viktor Strauch – Germany) . We had to compete with 9 other schools in the Iberian regional competition. The aim of the challenge was to create a sell-side style research report on Gas Natural Fenosa, the Spanish utility company, and to also make a presentation of the report to a panel of judges.

Putting together an initiating research report on Gas Natural Fenosa proved an exciting yet challenging task, especially as most of us in our group of five did not have prior experience researching or working with a utility company. We were able to leverage guidance from our supervising professor, Sandrine Naslin (Associate Professor of IE Finance Masters, former CEO of UBS Spain), and with the help of an industry contact we began to build an understanding of the industry, and structure our report.

Less than a month to go until the date, we were informed that the deadline was moved up by 10 days. This made for a very interesting and intense final couple of weeks. Finally, with a strong team effort and having leveraged the different strengths of our group of five, we completed our report and shortly after we presented it at the Madrid Stock Exchange.

After a close call by the judges we were ranked second; however, we held our heads high and were proud of our work. It was a great experience where we all learnt a lot—both about Gas Natural Fenosa, and more importantly the team effort it requires to produce a high quality report.


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