WHAT’S BRINGING TWO TECH RIVALS TOGETHER IN SWITZERLAND

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Oracle says its Swiss customers wanted a new kind of cloud. Hanspeter Kipfer, Oracle’s country manager for Switzerland, says that led his company to offer a new cloud infrastructure that differs from those of competitors, such as Amazon and Google. And as Switzerland becomes more attractive for tech companies, Oracle’s collaboration with Microsoft, another top player, was inevitable, he says.

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Swiss firm spies „opportunity“ in espionage scandal
This week’s revelations that U.S. and German intelligence services spied on governments worldwide for decades through secret control of a Swiss cryptography company came as no surprise to Robert Rogenmoser, CEO of Zurich-based Securosys. His company, which makes encryption devices used by banks to settle CHF 100 billion in daily transactions, has been trying for years to distinguish itself from Crypto AG. “A crisis is also an opportunity,” Rogenmoser says, explaining why he agreed to speak with CNNMoney’s Olivia Chang at such a sensitive time for the industry.

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Frank-Jürgen Richter, founder and chairman of Horasis: The Global Visions Community, an international think tank, says China is dealing well with the outbreak, despite criticisms of misinformation.

Windstorm brings windfall for Lausanne company
Europe’s first big storm of the year grounded flights across the continent, leaving many travelers scrambling to find alternatives. But the bad weather was a windfall for Simply Jet, a private jet company in Lausanne.

“The reputation was going down the drain”
Lukas Hässig, publisher of Inside Paradeplatz, also says Credit Suisse CEO Tidjane Thiam should have turned in his badge last year. Hannah Wise sits down with Hässig and financial journalist Haig Simonian to discuss if the Swiss bank has done enough to repair its reputation.

Credit Suisse battle serves as a wake-up call for investors
The battle at Credit Suisse over the fate of CEO Tidjane Thiam may be just the start of a broader conflict between investors and corporate boards as businesses redefine their raison d’être.     Chairman Urs Rohner came under attack from some of the bank’s biggest investors in the days before Thiam was shown the door. U.S.- and U.K.-based money managers demanded that Rohner, rather than Thiam, be held to account for the spying scandal that has shaken Switzerland’s second-largest bank. Credit Suisse would be acting against shareholders’ best interest if it removed a successful CEO, they said.     No one should be surprised the investors’ offensive failed. Thiam’s resignation was written on the wall when it became clear that the initial case—involving its former head of wealth management Iqbal Khan—was not an isolated event. “We saw a deterioration in terms of trust, reputation, and credibility among all our stakeholders,” Rohner said in media interviews after Thiam’s resignation.  It will take time to repair the damage. The Swiss financial supervisor is still investigating corporate governance at Credit Suisse in the wake of the scandal, during which a security officer killed himself.     For the record, an internal probe found that Thiam didn’t know about the snooping operations. That raises questions about what else he wasn’t aware of. Let’s not forget, Thiam also claimed he was blindsided by $1 billion in losses on trading positions in his first year on the job.   What the shareholders haven’t understood is that they don’t have the clout they once did. The notion that corporations function first and foremost to serve investors and maximize profits is falling out of favor as businesses respond to new social and environmental pressures.     At least that was the mantra at last month’s World Economic Forum, where Salesforce chairman and co-CEO Marc Benioff proclaimed that “capitalism as we have known it is dead.” For the first time in decades, the WEF updated its Davos Manifesto, a set of ethical principles, to emphasize the role of other stakeholders in the success of a business.     In this model, known as stakeholder capitalism, investing in employees, providing value to customers, dealing ethically with suppliers, supporting the community, and protecting the environment are as important as advancing the interests of shareholders.    Whether business leaders will make good on their pledges remains to be seen. But if the battle at Credit Suisse is any indication, it won’t be without a fight.

Von der Leyen’s Brexit message resonates in Switzerland
By distancing itself from EU rules, the UK risks weakening its access to the single market, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen warned in her keynote address in Davos today. Markus Will, senior economist at the University of St. Gallen, says the statement sent a clear message to Switzerland as well.

Six stories that made the day
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Financing the transition to a low-carbon economy
Banks are increasingly under fire from climate activists for funding fossil fuel projects. David Livingstone, Citigroup’s CEO in the EMEA region, says lenders have an important role to play in financing the transition to a broader base of energy sources.

What’s on the menu for the World Economic Forum 2020 in Davos
CNNMoney Switzerland’s Editor-in-Chief Andreas Schaffner tells us what to watch out for at the 50th anniversary of the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos.