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Our goals in focus – swisspartners – The art of finance

OUR GOALS IN FOCUS
Interview by Kathrin Meister

Dr Martin Meyer has been the new chairman of the board of swisspartners group since may 31, 2021. He succeeds Martin P. Egli, who successfully shaped the group’s growth for some 30 years. We spoke to dr Meyer about criteria for stability and security, his experience in politics and business and his objectives for swisspartners.

 

Dr Meyer, how can swisspartners offer its clients secure solutions even in turbulent times?

swisspartners is in an excellent position to ensure that clients continue to benefit from a long-term and stable business relationship into the future. Highly qualified, motivated staff, a track record of expertise in wealth management and wealth structuring, excellent performance and a consistent willingness to keep developing and adapting to new trends – these are and will remain some of the key factors underlying our success that we can extend to clients, now and in the future.

How significant is the fact that the group is based in Switzerland?

swisspartners benefits from being able to offer our services into international markets from our base in Switzerland, and into the EU from our office in Liechtenstein. We can operate within an economic area and customs union benefitting from political stability. This also enables us to offer our clients a high level of legal certainty. We can provide stable, cross-border solutions at all times. Clients wishing to have their wealth managed or structured in Switzerland or Liechtenstein in line with an asset protection approach, as well as those embarking on estate and succession planning, can rely on watertight state guarantees. In times of global political uncertainty, this puts Switzerland at a huge advantage. Thus “Swissness” epitomises stability and security.

 

 

In view of current events, many investors are wondering whether their assets are still safe. Would you say that clients of swisspartners can still sleep well at night?

As a business, we have an outstanding set-up. We have a stable shareholder base that has set long-term goals. We have a strong capital ratio, similar to that of large private banks in Switzerland and Liechtenstein, which is also a sign of security and stability for clients. And, as I mentioned earlier, our highly qualified, experienced and motivated professionals provide a top-quality service.

As the new Chairman of wisspartners Group, what issues are you focusing on?

Having had numerous discussions with staff at swisspartners and carried out my own analyses, I’ve identified three main areas that I’d like to focus on in my work for the group.

  • As a matter of principle, the needs of our clients always come first for me. Without clients, we as an organisation would be redundant. The requirements of the people we serve are going to evolve, so we have to shift our focus to also meet the needs of an additional, younger generation of clients. At the same time, we will continue to develop innovative services and bring them to the market. We want to add value for our clients – above and beyond the scope of conventional wealth management. We have no intention of standing still, but rather will strive to motivate our team to keep learning about relevant topics.
  • What I’ve learnt in my first 100 days as Board Chair: the coronavirus pandemic, and the long period it triggered of people working from home, wasn’t great for our corporate culture. We are committed to fostering a common team spirit and sense of togetherness amongst our people, for example by holding team events.
  • To make sure we future proof our business, we need to live a continuous change process. This includes optimising operational processes and keeping pace with digitalisation. In addition, we are striving to implement attractive succession plans for our longstanding relationship managers for all parties concerned – former relationship managers, their successors and, of course, our clients.

You just spoke about innovative products with which swisspartners can address the needs of a younger generation of clients. Can you give us an example?

The stress-free package is one such solution that we have developed. It stands out because it offers more than just conventional wealth management, instead encompassing a holistic service offering. As part of the stress-free package, we support our clients across a broad range of themes, from financial planning and tax issues to retirement solutions, estate planning and lifestyle services. The stress-free package has one major advantage: clients have a single point of contact who provides advice on – and takes care of – all aspects of their finances and retirement provisions.

Regarding “asset protection”: what solutions do you provide for sustainable asset management?

When financial market participants talk about “sustainable solutions”, what they mean is that wealth is not just managed for one generation, but rather across multiple generations. Thanks to the outstanding position we are in, we at swisspartners can provide solutions geared to the long term, extending
beyond a single generation or single phase of life. I’m thinking of smart fiduciary solutions tailored towards asset protection and wealth structuring or succession and estate planning. This is the best way to structure and manage wealth over multiple decades.

“Without clients, we as an organisation would be redundant.”

One more question to finish off – a personal one this time: how is your experience in politics relevant to business and the financial markets?

My political career was good preparation for business. At the age of 32, I was one of the youngest ministers in the Principality of Liechtenstein. When you take up a post in government, you gain a lot of experience in dealing with a wide range of stakeholders and issues, from EU regulations to digitalisation and other megatrends. These are issues that transcend politics and are now more relevant to the private sector than ever before.

An understanding of how politics approaches issues such as these and identifies possible solutions can be extremely useful in the private sector. If you understand how political processes work, you’re at an advantage as you can save time and effort by focusing directly on the issues that matter most to
businesses.

“Fiduciary solutions are an ideal way to structure and manage wealth over multiple decades.”

 

About Martin Meyer

Martin Meyer holds a doctorate in economics from the University of Bern and, as CEO, currently heads the family office of the ITW group of companies, which is headquartered in Liechtenstein. ITW is privately held and makes real estate and corporate investments.

From 2005 to 2013, Dr Meyer was a member of the government of the Principality of Liechtenstein, holding positions including Minister of Economic Affairs and Deputy Prime Minister. He now specialises in corporate governance, corporate leadership, entrepreneurship, family businesses and succession planning. Dr Meyer sits on various boards of international industrial and financial services companies.

In addition, he has been Honorary Consul of the Federal Republic of Germany for the Principality of Liechtenstein since 2016. He has been the President of the Liechtenstein Chamber of Commerce, which is the largest business association in the country since 2021.

 

Dr. Martin Meyer
Verwaltungsratspräsident swisspartners Gruppe
martin.meyer@swisspartners.com

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