Ella shares her insights into securing a graduate analyst role with British International Investment
What stood out about BII?
For Ella, pursuing an impactful career was always something she wanted to do after university and BII, as the UK’s Impact Investor and Development Finance Institution, felt like a natural fit. She completed a degree in economics and international relations and with an interest in sustainability went on to pursue a Masters in climate change, management and finance. When BII launched its graduate program at the beginning of the current strategy period, what stood out to Ella was its commitment to ensure 30% of investments qualified as Climate Finance. She said “working somewhere that puts the nexus of development and climate change at the forefront of what they do” aligned with her interest in climate and leading an impactful career.
She also noted the various opportunities to travel while working at BII. Even in the first two years, graduates are able to spend some time across BII’s investment geographies in Africa and South Asia. The international reach at BII means that Ella works with diverse colleagues across BII’s international offices but also in the London office where she is based.
What has the experience on the graduate programme been like?
Ella is part of the first graduate cohort at BII that started in August 2022. She has enjoyed the open and welcoming nature of everyone at the company. The rotational approach of the graduate scheme has meant Ella has been able to spend time both in the Infrastructure Equity team on her Investment rotation as well as in the Development Impact team during her Impact rotation. Ella says “the ability to analyse transactions from both an investment and impact lens allows one to look at a project in a more holistic way and helps the graduates to develop as well-rounded impact investors”.
What’s one highlight so far?
During her rotation in the Infrastructure Equity team, Ella had the opportunity to travel to Brussels to attend a training session on renewable energy project finance organised by EDFI (European Development Finance Institutions). Not only did the training further Ella’s understanding of how to successfully finance renewable energy project but she said “going to Brussels was a great opportunity to meet people across Europe that work in a similar field to me and hear about their experiences as well as creating better relationships with colleagues from BII who also attended the training”.
Are there any extra activities to get involved with and are you involved with anything exciting?
When starting at BII, Ella joined the company’s internal sustainability employee network called ‘GreenWorks’ which aims to promote sustainable lifestyle choices across the organisation. Ella is now on the GreenWorks committee and is organising a firm-wide volunteering day to a local farm! Beyond GreenWorks, Ella says there are lots of extra activities to get involved with at BII. There are a multitude of other employee networks focusing on gender, sexual orientation and African and South Asian heritage to name a few. BII also has different sports clubs and plays in a football tournament with the other European Development Finance Institutes.
Looking to follow in Ella’s footsteps? Discover live graduate opportunities with British International Investment