Zurich, 14 January 2019 – At the upcoming Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 10 April 2019, the Board of Directors of Julius Baer Group Ltd. will propose Romeo Lacher for election as new non-executive Chairman of the Board. Effective that date, he will succeed Daniel J. Sauter, who decided not to seek re-election after his tenure of 12 years as Board member, of which he served the past seven as Chairman.
The Board of Directors further nominates Eunice Zehnder-Lai and Olga Zoutendijk for election as new members of the Board. They will complement the Board, as Andreas Amschwand (announced in September 2018) and Gareth Penny are not seeking re-election at the AGM in April 2019. All of the other current members of the Board of Directors will stand for re-election.
Daniel J. Sauter, Chairman of Julius Baer, said: “Once elected by our shareholders at the upcoming AGM, these candidates will provide the appropriate succession for our Board of Directors and, thanks to the full support of the Board, a smooth transition in the stewardship of Julius Baer. During the selection process for my successor over the past year, we focused on identifying a highly respected and experienced candidate with a deep understanding of the Swiss financial service industry. I am very pleased that Romeo Lacher unites all these qualities, combining broad industry expertise with vast leadership experience. Eunice Zehnder-Lai and Olga Zoutendijk, with their international financial services background, are ideally placed to deepen the know-how and enhance the perspectives of our Board of Directors.”
Commenting on his own departure, Daniel J. Sauter added: “It has been a great privilege to serve one of the finest private banks for the past 12 years, and I am grateful for having had the opportunity to work with some of the best professionals in the industry.”
Romeo Lacher (born 1960) is a Swiss citizen. He has been Chairman of the Board of Directors of SIX Group AG since 2016 and served as its Vice Chairman from 2008 until 2016. He is expected to keep this mandate also as Chairman of Julius Baer. Furthermore, he is member of the Board of Directors of exchange-listed Wordline SA, France (ticker WLN.PA), a company specialised in electronic payments and transaction services in which SIX Group holds a minority stake. Romeo Lacher’s financial industry track record of over 30 years includes extensive executive experience in operations, product management, retail and private banking. He spent 26 successful years at Credit Suisse, where he was responsible for Private Banking region EMEA/Western Europe and held the position of Chief Operating Officer at Credit Suisse International Wealth Management until 2016.
Eunice Zehnder-Lai (born 1967) is a dual Swiss and Hong Kong citizen who gained broad executive experience in Greater China, Switzerland and the United States. She is a member of the Board of Directors of Geberit Group and DKSH Group, both listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange. Until November 2018, she was CEO of Institut für Persönlichkeitsorientiertes Management AG, an advisory firm in Switzerland specialised on customer centricity. Eunice Zehnder-Lai has 20 years of experience in the financial industry, having worked for LGT Capital Partners, Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch, covering asset and portfolio management, private wealth and corporate finance.
Olga Zoutendijk (born 1961) is a dual Australian and Dutch citizen, with 30 years of experience in banking in Asia, Australia, Europe and the United States. During her career, she held senior executive positions in retail, corporate and investment banking with ABN AMRO Bank, Standard Chartered Bank and Westpac Banking Corporation. From 2014 to 2018, Olga Zoutendijk was a member of the Supervisory Board of ABN AMRO Group N.V., which she chaired from 2016 to 2018. She is a member of the Board of Governors of Leiden University in the Netherlands.
Commenting on the departing members, Daniel J. Sauter continued: “When he resigns, Gareth Penny will have served the Board for 12 years, the past seven of which as Chairman of the Compensation Committee. In this capacity, he was instrumental in aligning the Group’s compensation scheme to new and far-reaching legislation. As announced at the end of September 2018, Andreas Amschwand will leave the Board after six years as member of the Governance and Risk Committee. In this role, he was an ideal sparring partner to the Committee overall and to me personally. On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank Gareth Penny and Andreas Amschwand for their expert opinion, valuable contributions and support during their tenure at Julius Baer. It has been a great pleasure working with both of them and witness the exemplary passion and commitment they showed for their duties in the Board.”
Charles G.T. Stonehill, Vice Chairman of Julius Baer, said: “We thank Daniel J. Sauter for his outstanding leadership of the Board of Directors for the past seven years. When he joined the Board in 2007, the Group was transforming from a formerly family-controlled regional business to Switzerland’s largest pure-play wealth manager with an extensive global footprint. Daniel J. Sauter’s entrepreneurial background and extensive board experience significantly added to the Board’s ability to guide Julius Baer in growing its international business. These qualities also made him the natural first candidate outside the founding family to become Chairman of the Group. Shortly after Daniel J. Sauter assumed this role in 2012, Julius Baer, in its largest strategic move, acquired Merrill Lynch’s International Wealth Management business. This significant step, along with other acquisitions and joint ventures completed during his Chairmanship, allowed Julius Baer to lay the foundation for the strong standing in both established and growth markets the Group enjoys today. On behalf of my colleagues on the Board, I would like to thank Daniel J. Sauter for his important contribution to Julius Baer’s success.”
Daniel J. Sauter will retain a close relationship with Julius Baer by continuing in the role as President of the Julius Baer Foundation Board.
All nominees are expected to become also members of the Board of Directors of Bank Julius Baer & Co. Ltd., which is composed of the same members in identical responsibilities as the Board of Directors of Julius Baer Group Ltd. Their detailed CVs are available at www.juliusbaer.com