BANKING WHISTLEBLOWER BRADLEY BIRKENFELD’S NEXT MOVE

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Six years after receiving a $104 million reward from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Bradley Birkenfeld tells us about his plans to create an organization to support other whistleblowers. In an interview from Paris, CNNMoney Switzerland also asked him about the UBS tax fraud trial in France and a potential new reward from the IRS.

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Swiss Bankers Association: Bank jobs may be moved out of Switzerland
Without a Swiss-EU framework agreement, Swiss banks may be forced to move jobs out of the country, says Herbert Scheidt, chairman of the Swiss Bankers Association. He cites recent moves by the UK banking industry due to Brexit as precedent for “severe consequences” for Switzerland if a deal isn’t made.

Swiss banking chairman: Libra won’t take off quickly in Switzerland
From spy scandals to the surge of crypto banks, the Swiss Bankers Association has had its hands full in 2019. However, Chairman Herbert Scheidt seems calm and confident. In part one of our Newsmaker interview, Scheidt expresses doubt that Facebook’s Libra will be quickly embraced in Switzerland but adds that the digital currency can make “important inroads” in parts of the world where the infrastructure is not as secure.

Tencent’s Wallerstein: Europe should embrace artificial intelligence
Europe’s industrial sector is missing an important opportunity, says David Wallerstein, Tencent’s chief eXploration officer. He says AI could be used in areas like power generation and energy optimization, among others. “This is totally wide open and a perfect area for Europe to embrace,” Wallerstein says.

Tencent’s chief eXploration officer on “the tyranny of capitalism”
David Wallerstein, Tencent’s chief eXploration officer, wants to apply disruptive technologies to help solve the world’s problems. He says Switzerland should experiment more with next-generation tech, particularly in its industrial sector. At last week’s Digital Festival in Zurich, Wallerstein called for a stronger ecosystem of problem solvers in the tech world and talked about what he calls “the tyranny of capitalism.”

Leclanché CEO wants to “dispel myth” all firm’s investors are Chinese
Some investors in Leclanché are significant wealthy Chinese families, according to its CEO. But Anil Srivastava says it’s a myth that all the financial backers are Chinese. He spoke to us just before the release of the company’s half-year results, about who owns the Swiss energy storage company.

Swiss battery maker urges industry to be honest about CO2 footprint
The battery industry must be honest about the carbon footprint of using components like lithium. That’s the view of Lechanché CEO Anil Srivastava, who spoke to us on board the world’s largest all-electric ferry in Denmark, which is powered by the Swiss firm’s technology.

Swiss baby boomers retiring a “huge opportunity” for women
Switzerland is running short of workers, warns Credit Suisse, which estimates that 1.1 million will retire by 2029. Patricia Widmer, head of University of St. Gallen’s “Women Back to Business,” thinks female returners could help fill the gap and urges recruiters to be more open-minded about career breaks.

Pamela Reif has conquered the German-speaking world—is Asia next?
Pamela Reif has a “small, but strong” following in Switzerland. But the social media star says no matter how small her audience is, she won’t turn to buying followers, something that’s looked down upon in her world. However, promoted posts are not out of the question, particularly if she courts a new following in Asia. It’s a market Reif says is interesting, with a lot of potential.

Fake job? Pamela Reif stands up for social media influencers
Social media star Pamela Reif was once called “a Swiss clock” by one of her corporate clients, because she’s never late when she posts to her millions of followers. So what does she think of critics who say that being an influencer is a fake job? She gave us her view at the Forbes Women’s Summit 2019 in Zurich.

Putting first espresso machine in space among Lavazza’s high points
What does it take to put an espresso machine into space? Lots of time and lots of money says, says Lavazza’s vice chairman Giuseppe Lavazza, as he describes this high point in the history of his family’s 124-year-old company. He also tells us how the project to give astronauts a coffee break to remember came about.

How long before Asian market gets served by coffee maker Lavazza?
Lavazza is interested in the Asian market, but according to our Newsmaker, countries such as China and Japan aren’t a priority. Vice chairman Giuseppe Lavazza explains why a very specific business model is needed so the coffee maker can be ambitious, but pragmatic, about the way forward.