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Jacques de Watteville to succeed Olivier Steimer as Chairman of the Board

The Vaud Cantonal Government has appointed Jacques de Watteville as the new Chairman of BCV’s Board of Directors.He will replace Olivier Steimer, Chairman since 2002, and take up his position on 1 January 2018. 

The Vaud Cantonal Government, acting in accordance with Article 12, Section 1(a), of the cantonal law governing BCV, appointed Jacques de Watteville as the next Chairman of BCV at its meeting on 18 January 2017. Mr. de Watteville will become one of the four Board members appointed by the Vaud Cantonal Government and will replace Olivier Steimer, whose term expires on 31 December 2017. In order to facilitate the transition before he takes office on 1 January 2018, Mr. de Watteville will, among other things, begin attending Board meetings as an observer on 1 September 2017.


Highly-regarded diplomat specializing in financial affairs

Mr. de Watteville has been Switzerland’s chief negotiator with the European Union since 2015 and was State Secretary for International Financial Matters in the Federal Department of Finance between 2013 and 2016. A Vaud resident who was born in Lausanne, he holds law and business degrees from the University of Lausanne and was admitted to the bar of the Canton of Vaud. After serving as a Delegate of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Lebanon, he began what was to become a remarkable career in diplomacy when he entered the diplomatic service of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs in 1982.  Mr. de Watteville served as Switzerland’s official representative to a number of countries as well as the European Union, and in the late 1990s handled international affairs on a number of issues relating to Switzerland’s financial services sector. He also played a key role in resolving tax disputes between Switzerland and the United States, the OECD, the EU, and several EU Member States. Since 2015 he has been leading Switzerland’s negotiations with the EU, most notably on the sensitive matters of the free movement of persons and the future of the bilateral approach to agreements.

The Vaud Cantonal Government and the Bank are delighted that Mr. de Watteville will be bringing to bear his considerable skills and experience for the benefit of the Vaud economy. By choosing to join BCV as Chairman of the Board despite several other opportunities Mr. de Watteville demonstrates his strong attachment to Vaud, and the Vaud Cantonal Government and the Bank would like to thank him for his choice.


Fifteen years of uninterrupted success

Mr. de Watteville will succeed Olivier Steimer, whose 15-year term was marked by a steady stream of achievements. Mr. Steimer was brought in to turn BCV around following the Bank’s 2001–2002 impaired loan crisis; he pulled together a team of professionals who, under his leadership, quickly set the Bank on a path to renewed and lasting success while serving the interests of the Vaud economy. They refocused BCV on its core businesses and worked the impaired loans off its balance sheet, setting up an effective business model that has since delivered steady profitability and is perfectly in line with BCV’s mission as a cantonal bank. BCV is now recognized as one of the world’s most solid banks and as one of the Swiss banks that creates the most value.

Mr. Steimer will remain Chairman of the Board until 31 December 2017.



Lausanne, Switzerland, 28 February 2017



Christian Jacot-Descombes, Press Officer
Tel.:  +41 21 212 28 61


Gregory Duong, Investor Relations 

Tel.: +41 21 212 20 71



Note to editors:

This press release is being issued outside the trading hours of the SIX Swiss Exchange in order to comply with the principles of ad hoc disclosure pursuant to the SIX listing rules.


The above text is a translation of the original French document; only the French text is authoritative.