Benoist de Vimal: How Sciences Po helped his career take flight

We spoke with Benoist de Vimal, director at the Natixis New York branch. Benoist studied at Sciences Po and for his investment banking expertise in the aviation industry, was named in Airline Economics' 40 under 40 2019 list. In this interview, he discusses the current challenges facing the aviation industry and his advice for current students and young graduates.

What program(s) did you complete at Sciences Po? 

I did a  Master Degree in Finance & Strategy specialized in International Business. I completed my Bachelor and Master at Sciences Po.

What brought you to the United States? 

My employer, Natixis, offered me a position in the Aviation New York team. 

Describe your line of work. What do you enjoy most about your job? What's the most challenging thing about it? 

I am an Aviation Banker, covering a mix of airlines and aircraft leasing companies both in the US and in Latin America. My main focus is financing aircraft for those companies. I also have a coverage role by which I am promoting the bank’s other products. 

What I enjoy most about my job is first the sector and also working with people from different countries with different cultures which enables me to travel.

The most challenging may be happening right now with COVID-19. This is the worst crisis the aviation industry has ever experienced. Limits are being tested and we need to navigate in this uncertain environment balancing a severe short-term stress and the potential of sustained recovery. 

How did Sciences Po prepare you for your career? 

Sciences Po exposed me to an international environment that I did not know before. It taught me how to interact in it. I have learned to better analyze certain geopolitical dynamics that are key to understand the risks and opportunities doing business in certain countries. 

Any advice for current Sciences Po students and young graduates? 

My advice for current Sciences Po students and young graduates would be to find something they like to do or are interested in. The advice may sound obvious but it is necessary to keep asking oneself the question. Then, be bold and respectful. This is the best time to take risks. Last, don’t be afraid to ask. 

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