The Guild of Foreign Trade was a Thayan organization that managed the sale of magic items via the nation's various enclaves located throughout Faerûn. This incredibly lucrative business made the leadership of the guild very rich, and thus very powerful, within their homeland and beyond.
In the late 14th century DR, the guild was led by the highly ambitious autharch Samas Kul, a high-ranking Red Wizard of transmutation. While several of Thay's zulkirs were on the board that directed the guild's actions, they left the administrative duties to autharch Kul.
The guild employed hundreds of employees, including wizards, clerics, clerical staff, mercenaries, laborers, and even magical guardians. Many of the most creative, albeit low-ranking, Red Wizards were among those who crafted the magic items sold overseas by the guild. Many saw this as a means to improve their station within the organization, to gain power, money and influence.
Other Red Wizard guild members would act as spies, or facilitators, for the country's magic trade.
The wizards of Thay produced a wide variety of items from the magical workshops and laboratories owned by the reigning zulkirs of the Red Wizards. The Guild of Foreign Trade purchased these items and managed their sale and shipment overseas, via the various enclaves of Thay. Before they were shipped, their goods were amassed in a vast network of fortresses, warehouses, and subterranean vaults located throughout the eastern countries.
From the docks of Thay, the guild would ship their wares in the holds of their yellow-sailed fleet of merchant ships, under full guard, across the Sea of Fallen Stars. These ships would return with payment, in the form of either gold or slaves.
In the early 14th century, the guild was a mere husk of what it would come to be. At the time, their sole responsibility was to sell charters to merchants of Thay who wished to peddle their wares in foreign lands. By 1372 DR, it had grown to be extremely influential and made its high-ranking members a great deal of wealth.
- ↑ Richard Lee Byers (March 2008). Undead. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 26. ISBN 978-0-7869-4783-6.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Sean K. Reynolds, Jason Carl (November 2001). Lords of Darkness. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 58. ISBN 0-7869-1989-2.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Sean K. Reynolds, Jason Carl (November 2001). Lords of Darkness. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 59. ISBN 0-7869-1989-2.