Our people

David Trafford

David Trafford - Chief Executive Officer - London, UK

David has thirty years experience in the mining industry gained by working for international companies and a range of corporate and investment banking divisions within global financial institutions.  He has worked on projects involving the exploration, development, production and marketing of base and precious metals, bulk commodities, fertilizer minerals and specialist metals.  He has led transactions on every continent for investors, mining companies and governments advising on: strategy; financing options; acquisition and disposals.

Prior to joining CRU, David was global head of mining and metals at Standard Chartered.  He was head of Macquarie Bank's European natural resources advisory team and held natural resource related positions at BNP Paribas, Kleinwort Benson and Samuel Montagu.  In addition, David spent four years in the business development department of Outokumpu Metals and Resources (now Outokumpu oyj). 

David holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mining Geology from Imperial College.

Sola Adebiyi

Sola Adebiyi - Senior Consultant - London, UK

Sola joined CRU Consulting in 2011 from CRU Analysis' Aluminium Business Unit, where she was responsible for research in the aluminium products market and contributed to the Primary and Products team's regular products.

She has managed a wide variety of consultancy projects in the aluminium industry since joining CRU Consulting including market reports on downstream aluminium products, aluminium scrap, bauxite and wire and cable. She has also previously worked on a project analyzing a possible joint venture between a State government and an aluminium producer, market reviews and competitiveness studies for bauxite and alumina projects as well as studies on extruded products. Away from the aluminium industry, Sola has also worked on strategy and valuation projects covering the potash, sulphuric acid and ferrosilicon markets. She has presented CRU's view of the aluminium market at a number of conferences and industry events.

Sola holds a BSc Chemistry and Business Studies degree and an MSc in Engineering Business Management from the University of Warwick.

Zaid Aljanabi

Zaid Aljanabi - Principal Consultant - London, UK

Zaid recently joined Consulting team’s aluminium and copper desk, bringing an extensive experience in the aluminium and nonferrous metals industry. Prior to CRU, he spent more than six years in the Middle East working for Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA), where he led the market research unit and held various positions within marketing and sales, corporate strategy and finance. He previously worked in London for several years for a number of commodity-focused consultants as an analyst and where he also managed the precious and base metals research unit at Diapason Commodities Management. He began his commodities research career in 2002 as a global energy economist with AUPEC, an oil and gas consultancy firm.

Zaid holds an MA with honours in Economic Science from the University of Aberdeen and an MSc in Economics from the University of Amsterdam. Zaid speaks Arabic and French.

Will Ayre

Will Ayre - Consultant - London, UK

Will joined CRU Consulting in April 2015. Before this he worked as an Exploration Geologist at Cleveland Potash in north east England, where he was responsible for running several exploration drill rigs in addition to assisting with the planning and directing of day-to-day mining activities. Will has also worked at Skorpion Zinc mine during his MSc degree thesis, studying the economic potential of copper mineralisation at the deposit.

Will graduated from Durham University in 2012 with a BSc in Geology and also holds an MSc in Mining Geology from the Camborne School of Mines, Exeter University.

Laura Brooks

Laura Brooks - Principal Consultant - London, UK

Laura joined CRU Consulting in January 2016. She is a project manager on the Iron Ore and Steel Consulting Desk.  Prior to this role, Laura worked in the CRU Analysis team for 7 years, focusing on steelmaking raw materials markets.

As the editor of three of CRU's iron ore market analysis reports, Laura has a strong understanding of supply and demand fundamentals, alongside prices and costs in the industry. For the past 5 years, Laura has been the main point of contact for CRU's iron ore clients in CRU Analysis and is close to the day-to-day movements of the market, given her wide contact base. With this experience, Laura has spoken at many industry conferences and seminars, as well as sat on expert panels explaining the rationale for CRU's iron ore forecasts.

Prior to her career at CRU, Laura completed a first degree in Management Sciences from Warwick Business School, University of Warwick.  Laura also has a law degree from the College of Law in London.

Diego Carrasco

Diego Carrasco - Consultant - Santiago, Chile

Diego joined CRU Consulting after graduating from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, where he focused on studying asset management optimization of mining projects. He interned in different mining companies in Chile working on the evaluation of new policies, and worked part time in the R&D department of a mining equipment maintenance company in the optimization of their short term planning.

Diego holds a BSc in Industrial Mining Engineering from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, and is an MSc (ABD) at the same university. He is bilingual in English and Spanish, has conversational Portuguese and has instruction on Mandarin Chinese.

Paulo Carvalho

Paulo Carvalho - Principal Consultant - London, UK

Paulo joined CRU Consulting in 2013 after three and a half years as Senior Economist at Vale S.A., in charge of macroeconomic and commodities research at the Investor Relations department. Paulo developed Vale’s demand and price forecast models used for strategic planning and financial valuation of iron ore, base metals and fertilizer businesses, and advised senior management on the effects of global macroeconomic cycles on the commodities demand and price co-movements. He has also presented his views to shareholders, institutional investors and market analysts in conferences and industry events.     

Over the years Paulo has been involved with several projects within the commodities industry, including developing a country risk methodology for discount rate calculations, participating in due diligences and debt and equity capital offerings, negotiating with strategic partners and potential buyers in asset sales and elaborating an economic assessment on Brazil’s New Mining Code.

Earlier in his career, Paulo researched and advised on Emerging Market economies, both in academia and in consulting. He holds a Masters degree and a BA in Economics from the PUC-Rio University and has recently completed an Executive Development Program at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He received a Goldman Sachs Global Leader award in 2005, and he speaks English, Portuguese and Italian.

Ying Dai

Ying Dai - Consultant - Beijing, China

Ying joined CRU Consulting Beijing team in 2016 and contributed on a number of major China related studies since. Her recent projects included: an in-depth study of cobalt supply chain in China, where Ying was responsible for conducting a field research, contacting around 30 cobalt chemicals producers and consumers and gathering information on their operations, sources of raw materials, pricing structure and downstream buyers. Ying mapped out cobalt flow within China, identified the top players and key processes flows; analysis of battery grade materials, she provided the demand and supply inputs for price forecasts of battery grade metals products and contributed to the price assessment of these products; market study for manganese chemicals advising on a preferred target end use sectors based on their financial viability as a part of bankable feasibility study for a new manganese deposit.  Ying has good working relations with many commodities market players which she has developed during her education and through her career.

Before joining CRU, Ying Dai worked for Beijing General Research Institute of Mining & Metallurgy (“BGRIMM”) on market analysis, mainly on lead and zinc as well as other non-ferrous metals.  She was responsible for data collection and market research from upstream to downstream across the value chain of China’s lead and zinc industries, feasibility studies of new projects and development planning of non-ferrous metal industry committed by the government.

Ying graduated from K. U. Leuven, Belgium with a MA degree in Material and Metallurgy Engineering in 2012.  She also holds a BA degree in Material Science and Engineering at University of Science and Technology, Beijing.

Juan Esteban Fuentes

Juan Esteban Fuentes - Managing Consultant - Santiago, Chile

Juan Esteban joined CRU in 2006 after six years as Assistant Vice President at Citigroup Chile within the Metals and Mining group, performing risk analysis for the main Chilean mining companies for financial transactions.

Since joining CRU Consulting, Juan Esteban has been involved in developing methodologies to quantify and mitigate risks in mining and mineral processing operations as well as in market due diligence for copper, iron ore and fertilizers. Since 2009, Juan Esteban is the Office Manager CRU Chile.

Juan Esteban holds a BSc in Industrial Civil Engineering from the Catholic University of Chile and is fluent in English and Spanish.

Alejandro Exss

Alejandro Exss - Research Analyst – Santiago, Chile

Alejandro joined CRU Consulting in 2015 after graduating from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, where he focused on studying mining geology and mine planning. He did his internship in Division El Teniente of CODLECO, working in the optimal relocation of the staff from a soon-to-be-closed production level and in the optimization of emergency measures and practices.

Since joining CRU, Alejandro has worked on several projects, having worked in a wide range of commodities, including copper, iron ore, steel and various fertilizers. In these projects, the analysis included regional and global market analysis, due diligence and demand forecast models.

Alejandro holds a BSc in Industrial & Mining Engineering from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. He is bilingual in English and Spanish.

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