Business Guru

Raj Fernando: Trader and Philanthropist

Mr. Raj Fernando had ambition even early on in his life. After joining Beloit College where he majored in Economics and minored in history, he joined the Chicago Mercantile Exchange as a volunteer. That is where Raj would start his career. When he graduated from college, he started from the bottom of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and climbed his way up the ladder. He worked at the Exchange from 1996 to 2002 and in 1997 he became a member of the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT). He was a cash bond trader at the exchange.

In 2002, he left the Chicago Mercantile Exchange to start his firm, Chopper Trading. His knowledge in financial markets and technological innovation made him very likely to succeed. In 2004, Mr. Fernando diversified his business from full-time trading and redirected some of his efforts to technology. The strategy he used for security, risk management, communication and trading was very complicated. Within ten years, Chopper Trading was one of the biggest traders on exchanges worldwide. As of 2015, Chopper Trading had about 250 employees worldwide.

The way Raj Fernando ran Chopper Trading was different from how most leaders run their corporations. He wanted to bring in employees that would better the atmosphere at the workplace. He wanted employees who could be part of a team. Mr. Fernando would not hire someone who would bring a toxic attitude to Chopper Trading no matter his credentials or how good he was. He had to conduct intensely extensive research to find employees who fit his parameters. The feel at Chopper Trading is more of a family rather than people who work together. He sold the business the same year to a firm called DRW, also a trading company. In 2016 Raj founded™. The site provides valuable information to people and organizations to help them increase their productivity.

Raj is involved in various philanthropic projects. He has raised funds for various Democratic candidates including Barack Obama. In 2011, he was the third highest fund raiser in President Obama’s presidential campaign. He has also raised funds for the William J Clinton Foundation. He serves on the Chicago Orchestra Symphony’s board of trustees. He also is on the Board of Directors for PAWS Chicago. He is also a member of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. Mr. Fernando is a man with a big wallet which he opens up because of his big heart.

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