“Wherever a silver is made, a copper goes to Obrais.”
Also Known As: The Honourable Obrais Company, Obrais Trading and Mercantile, Obrais Company
Obrais is a wealthy and powerful trade company with a network of trading posts spanning a significant portion of the continent. It has established its place in continental trade via a combination of skilled diplomacy, shrewd negotiation, high levels of investment in security and access to key technologies.
The Obrais company is very likely the most pervasive and successful intercultural trade endeavour in all of Aeldos. There are only a handful of trade companies of equivalent reach and few with the same advantages.
Founded nearly two centuries ago by Hereward Obrais, a famous Victran explorer and trader, who leveraged patronage from most of the major aristocratic houses of Victra and his belief that ‘Everything has a price’ to create an enduring network of trading posts with facilities in almost every major trade city on the continent.
Obrais’ success has been attributed to a variety of factors…
Favoured Trade Status
Obrais and its Victran Patrons have spared no expense in making the right contacts and their shrewd and skilled envoys have proved extremely adept at dodging tarriffs and negotiating preferred tax rates. It is well known that Obrais is very generous to those who facilitate the success of the company and very problematic for those who don’t. The result is few living enemies and many devoted friends.
The Obrais trading network consists of 62 main trading posts and dozens of smaller shops in cities from Victra to Allfrerhem. The number and proximity of trading posts makes it easy for the company to move goods far and fast, relaying high demand exotic goods from one end of the continent to the other.
Obrais has aggressively pursued local or continental monopolies on a variety of resources and goods. As a result they are able to charge higher prices and are the sole source for key materials. Obrais has repeatedly tried to control markets for salvage and offers excellent prices, but most locales have instituted policies that give the local rulers first offer on any scrap.
Obrais is backed substantially by multiple Victran noble houses. This backing was attained by promising and providing trade access outside the southern scythe; all patrons gain access to a vast market for their goods and the ability buy foreign goods from Obrais at preferred prices making access lucrative and rewarding.
Obrais caravans and ships spare no expense on defense. In addition to hiring skilled road wardens and hunters to keep primary trade arteries clear, and the ability to field an army of well equipped Obrais caravan guardsmen, the company also posts lucrative bounties on anyone interfering with their trade. Rumors suggest they also maintain a roster of ‘specialists’ who are feared by bandits across the continent. The reputation for security Obrais caravans provide has led many cities to welcome the company and the stability they bring to the local trade roads.
Obrais utilizes first age technology to its advantage and maintains over two dozen traction engines for hauling heavy loads across the continent. These massive first age machines are faster, able to carry more, and are better armed and armoured than any traditional trade caravan. Many a bandit or raider have met their end under the grinding wheels of an Obrais Traction Engine and those that survive never make a second attempt.
Proceeds of Slavery
Obrais knows that not all nations approve of slavery, and they are careful to avoid the slave-trade where it might get them in trouble, but they have no problem benefiting from slavery. Where it is permitted, Obrais engages in it directly, selling and transporting Ossandrian slaves. Where slavery is illegal, Obrais is still happy to sell the cheap goods made by slaves. Obrais is extremely careful to hide their involvement or use secondary trade groups to facilitate their operation in less tolerant areas such as Selene and Lux.
Founder: Hereward Obrais
Current Owner: Gavan Obrais
Headquarters: Victra City, Victra