Speakers 2019

Be inspired by our renowned speakers at the general assembly and the Aussenwirtschaftsforum on 26.03.2019 and benefit from the experiences and visions of our SME CEOs.

In addition to the inspiring presentations, the Aussenwirtschaftsforum offers generous networking opportunities. These provide plenty of space to answer your export questions with our experts, partners and representatives of the 27 export target markets from all regions of the world.

Discover with us the enormous potential of attractive export markets and take part in the Aussenwirtschaftsforum.

Frau Vetsch im Gespräch mit Herrn Darrell, CEO, Logitech


Interview partner and host of the general meeting 
Ruth Metzler-Arnold has served as Chairwoman of the Supervisory Board of Switzerland Global Enterprise (S-GE) since 2011. She is a former Vice President and member of the Swiss Federal Council (1999-2003). As a lawyer and certified public accountant, she sits on several boards of directors. Among them are AXA, Bühler AG, Fehr Advice AG, Reyl & Cie SA and Swiss Medical Network SA, the latter of whose subsidiary she presides. In addition, Ruth Metzler-Arnold is a member of the Board of Governors at the University of St. Gallen HSG, the Board of Trustees of Avenir Suisse and president of the Board of Trustees of the Pontifical Swiss Guard.

Ruth Metzler-Arnold
Chairwoman of the Supervisory Board, Switzerland Global Enterprise

Keynote General Assembly: Migros Culture Percentage and Commitment Migros: Living Corporate Responsibility for Swiss Society 
Hedy Graber has headed the Cultural and Social Directorate of the Migros Cooperative Association since 2004. She is thus responsible for the national direction of the Migros Culture Percentage and the Engagement Migros promotion fund. She is president of the Forum Kultur und Ökonomie association and a member of various juries and boards of trustees. In 2015 she was awarded the title of European Cultural Manager.

Hedy Graber
Cultural and Social Director of the Migros Cooperative Association

Host of the Aussenwirtschaftsforum

Daniel Küng has been CEO of Switzerland Global Enterprise, and thus the first point of contact for all internationalization issues raised by Swiss and Liechtenstein companies, since 2004. After studying business management, finance and accounting at the University of St. Gallen HSG, he relocated to Brazil. Küng founded and led two management consultancies in Brazil and Portugal that assisted companies with their international business ventures.

Daniel Küng
CEO, Switzerland Global Enterprise

Andreas Gerber joined Credit Suisse in 1989. Since April 2015 he has been Head of SME Business Switzerland. In 2017 he became President of the Swiss Venture Club (SVC), the leading swiss network of entrepreneurs. Andreas holds a degree in Business Economics. His professional career has taken him from advising major clients listed on the stock exchange, via managing corporate client business, to serving as Head of SME Region Mittelland from 2006. In 2010 he moved to Zurich, where for four years he led the corporate client business of Region Zurich and Schaffhausen.

Andreas Gerber
Managing Director and Head of SME Business Switzerland, Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd.

Guy Parmelin, Federal Councillor, Head of the Federal Department of Economics, Education and Research (WBF)
Guy Parmelin has been a Federal Councillor since 2015 and Head of the Federal Department of Economics, Education and Research (WBF) since January 2019. The former National Councillor (2003 – 2015) holds a master’s degree  in agriculture and viticulture. His political career began in the 1990s as President of Bursins Municipal Council (VD). In 1994 Parmelin was elected to the cantonal parliament of the canton of Vaud for the Schweizerische Volkspartei (SVP). In 2000, he took over the office of party president of the SVP in Vaud.

Guy Parmelin
Federal Councillor, Head of the Federal Department of Economics, Education and Research (WBF)

Keynote: "An SME from Weggis cooperates with international market leaders and grows in mature markets"
Adrian Steiner joined Thermoplan AG in 1998 as teamleader customer service. Today he is the CEO and co-owner and runs the company with around 330 employees, which produces professional fully automatic coffee machines for the catering trade. There are now three subsidiaries in Germany, Austria and the USA. In addition to the American coffee house chain Starbucks, Nespresso is also one of the major customers of the company, which is based in central Switzerland.

Adrian Steiner
CEO, Thermoplan AG

Executive Talk MEM: "Perfect in shape for mature markets: How Otto Hofstetter AG is expanding in the food packaging industry." (Presented by Swissmem)
Otto Hofstetter took over his father's business in 1994 as a trained mechanic and after various stays abroad. In addition to his work as a production manager, he studied business administration and then switched to sales to support the specialist shop until he took over the management of Otto Hofstetter AG in 1994.

Otto Hofstetter
CEO, Otto Hofstetter AG

Executive Talk Consumer Goods: "Innovation, customization and services - conquering mature markets with the right concepts to go"
Marion Isabella Klein took over the family business in 2009 and so the leadership of Pack Easy AG "Swiss Travel Solutions". She is born in Lucerne, has many years of experience in sales, marketing and leadership acquired in different companies and industries. Her company stands for stylish differentiation from competitors and for an intelligent use of own dynamic skills.

Marion Isabella Klein
Owner and CEO, Pack Easy AG

Executive Talk Life Science: "Sustainable growth in mature markets without side effects - the internationalization strategy of Similasan"

Since 2009, Urs Lehmann is leading Similasan AG in Jonen (AG), the market-leading manufacturer of homeopathic medicines with global markets. After a successful sports career - crowned by a world champion title - he obtained a doctorate, after studying business administration, from the Institute of Accounting & Controlling at the University of Zurich and earned a PhD in 2009. As Swiss Ski President, he forms and promotes the Swiss snow sports significantly.

Dr. Urs Lehmann
CEO, Similasan AG

Executive Talk Industry: "Expansion through Cleantech innovations, acquisitions and organic growth in mature markets"
Jesper Munch Jensen has been CEO of the JENSEN-GROUP "Sustainable laundry automation" since 1998. Born in Denmark, he grew up in Belgium and Switzerland. He holds an MBA and recently completed the Harvard President's Program in Leadership. Jesper Jensen is an international leader with a clear vision for the JENSEN-GROUP.

Jesper Jensen

Swiss Business Hub Talk – Mature Market UK + Ireland
Marieke Hood is the Head of the Swiss Business Hub UK + Ireland since 2014, therefore supporting Swiss companies looking at exporting in the 2 countries, with a particular focus on innovative segments within ICT, Advanced Engineering and Life Sciences. She was previously Deputy Hub Manager at the Swiss Business Hub France.

Marieke Hood
Head of Swiss Business Hub UK + Ireland

Swiss Business Hub Talk – Mature Market USA
Caroline Blaser has been heading the Swiss Business Hub USA since the end of 2017. Together with her team, she supports Swiss SMEs with their US market entry and positions Switzerland as a business location for US companies. Thanks to many years of experience in the North American market, she disposes of an extensive network in the USA. She holds a Master’s Degree in International Economics and Public Administration from Columbia University in New York.

Caroline Blaser
Head of Swiss Business Hub USA

Swiss Business Hub Talk – Mature Market Japan
Claudio Mazzucchelli has been living in Asia for over 20 years and has headed the Swiss Business Hub Japan based at the Swiss Embassy in Tokyo since September 2017. Previously, he was Head of the Swiss Business Hub China (2008 to 2012) and the Swiss Business Hub Korea (2012 to 2017). He has a large personal network and a wealth of experience of market development trends and opportunities in North East Asia.

Claudio Mazzucchelli
Head of Swiss Business Hub Japan

Breakout Session 1 Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd.: "Foreign exchange risks: Currency hedging pays off"

Marcel Gremlich has worked for Credit Suisse since 2013 and advises internationally active corporate clients. He is a CFA charterholder and has a Bachelor's degree in business administration.

Marcel Gremlich
FX Sales Large Corporates & Asset Managers, Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd.

Breakout Session 1 Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd.: "Foreign exchange risks: Currency hedging pays off"

Christoph Leuenberger has worked at Credit Suisse since 2014. He advises SMEs, commodity trading companies, and banks and has a Master's degree in banking and finance.

Christoph Leuenberger
FX Sales Small/Medium Enterprises & Banks, Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd.

Breakout Session 2 Credit Suisse (Schweiz) AG: "Credit Suisse PB Research and Strategy: Where will our journey through mature markets take us?"

Reto Hess has over 15 years of experience in the banking industry and is a CFA and CAIA Charterholder. As head of the equity research team in Private Banking, he is responsible for industrial sector analysis.

Reto Hess
CFA, Head of Equity Research, Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd.

Breakout Session 2 Credit Suisse (Schweiz) AG: "Credit Suisse PB Research and Strategy: Where will our journey through mature markets take us?"

Sascha Jucker has been working at Credit Suisse for four years and is responsible for forecasts involving the Swiss economy and foreign trade. He holds a master’s degree in economics from the University of Zurich.

Sascha Jucker
Swiss Macro Economics & Strategy, Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd.

Breakout Session AXA: "Risk management for exporters: Consciously handling risks and opportunities"

Andreas Schiller has worked for AXA for 20 years and has broad experience in leading risk management functions as well as in the area of Credit & Surety. As Head of Credit & Surety he develops strategies for the national and international business of Credit & Surety and is also responsible for planning, controlling and budgeting. He is currently also ad interim Head of Property & Casualty.

Andreas Schiller
Head Credit & Surety, AXA

Breakout Session AXA: "Risk management for exporters: Consciously handling risks and opportunities"

Paolo Larentis has almost 30 years' experience at AXA - first as a principal agent, then as a trainer and Key Account Manager in Sales. Since 2012, he has led Credit & Surety Sales Switzerland as Head of Sales Credit and is responsible for the sale of all products in the area of accounts receivable security, e.g. for payment defaults and the related funding opportunities.

Paolo Larentis
Head of Sales Credit, AXA

Breakout Session AXA: "Risk management for exporters: Consciously handling risks and opportunities"
Jean Pierre Wyss co-founded u-blox AG in 1997. U-blox offers a market-leading wireless technology that enables the reliable positioning and networking of people and devices. Mr. Wyss has a degree in electrical engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich (ETH) and a Finance for Executives diploma from INSEAD, Singapore. Since 1997 he has been a member of the Board of Directors, CFO (up to 2011), and Head of Production & Logistics at u-blox AG. In 2007, u-blox AG was listed on the stock exchange (IPO) and u-blox Holding AG was founded.

Jean-Pierre Wyss
Member of the Board of Directors and Head of Production & Logistics, u-blox AG

Breakout Session Swiss: “A smile at the right moment – employees as the most important differentiating factor”
René Caldart began his career with Swissair in 1988 and became a qualified maître de cabine intercontinental (international purser) in 1998. Since 2007 he has led the largest in-flight personnel association of over 600 freelance cabin crew members at Swiss International Air Lines Ltd. In 1995 he completed a training as an actor at the HB Studio in New York. He then attended seminars for improvisational theatre in Berlin and Munich. In 1999 he won the Swiss Comedy Award as cabaret artist. Apart from his team leader activities, he continues to serve as a maître de cabine on the European and intercontinental routes.

René Caldart
Team Leader Cabin Crew, Swiss International Air Lines Ltd.

Breakout Session International SOS: “Cybersecurity, terrorism, robbery: providing adequate security support to your staff while doing business abroad.“

Before joining International SOS as Regional Security Manager, Gautier Porot (EMBA & Masters in Criminology) held, among others, successive positions as Swiss Guard at the Vatican, Commanding Officer within the Swiss Armed Forces, Head of Security of the Federal Chancellery in Bern and most recently the role of General organizer & coordinator for the Pope Francis visit in Geneva. Gautier is a part-time Crisis Leadership trainer at the IMD Business School.

Gautier Porot
Regional Security Manager, International SOS

Breakout Session PwC Switzerland: "Growth drivers for mature markets: strategic collaborations and acquisitions"

Dr. Martin Frey is an experienced expert in M&A transactions, and in debt and equity capital markets in mature and emerging markets. Before joining PwC in 2005, he worked at UBS and Lehman Brothers in New York, Chicago and Zurich. He is the PwC Advisory Leader for the Swiss Retail & Consumer Industry and a graduate of the Universities of Basel and Minneapolis, where he earned a Master’s degree in economics and a Ph.D. in management.

Dr. Martin Frey
Partner, Head Corporate Finance / M&A, PwC Switzerland

Breakout Session PwC Switzerland: "Growth drivers for mature markets: strategic collaborations and acquisitions"
Peter Kasahara is an experienced leader and visionary with a track record of supporting clients in their digital transformation and business reimagination across industries. He is skilled in strategy, leadership & people engagement, hands-on change management, as well as innovation in a digital and connected world. He holds an MBA of the University of St. Gallen and is a graduate of the Yale School of Management.

Peter Kasahara
Managing Partner PwC Digital Services, PwC Switzerland

Kathrin Hönegger is moderator and author. Born in the canton of St. Gallen, she completed the journalism modules of the MAZ and studied at the Schauspielschule Zurich. She works at Swiss Television for the weekly knowledge programme "Einstein" and in the daily programme of SRF3. In addition, she moderates selected readings between art, culture and science or podiums, such as the "Breakout Sessions" at the Swiss Economic Forum.
(image source: Mirjam Kluka)

Kathrin Hönegger
SRF-moderator and author

Official program