Half-year winner 2022: ABB CEO Björn Rosengren has once again the best image among Swiss CEOs

  • Björn Rosengren remains at the top of the SonntagsZeitung CEO Image Ranking after the first half of 2022. The fact that he runs the automation technology group ABB like a portfolio manager goes down well with shareholders
  • Second place goes to Roberto Cirillo, CEO of Swiss Post, who is looking for new business activities. UBS CEO Ralph Hamers scores high on the topics of sustainability and digitalization, both relevant for the future, and comes in third
  • Vincent Ducrot (SBB) remains in fourth place. New in the ranking is Fabrice Zumbrunnen (Migros) in fifth place. He is making a name for himself with restructuring

The half-year Swiss CEO Image Ranking, which was published by SonntagsZeitung, shows a familiar picture:ABB CEO Björn Rosengren is once again in first place. For the ranking, UNICEPTA analyzed the media presence of the CEOs of all Swiss companies listed on the SMI as well as Coop, Glencore, Migros, SBB and Swiss Post. ABB shareholders "appreciate that Rosengren runs the industrial group like a portfolio manager," Handelsblatt describes the Swedish top manager's formula for success. "Business units that he sees as having no future are spun off or divested." Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung also notes that Rosengren is consistently pursuing this strategy: "The turbocharger business, for example, is to be sold off completely. Rosengren favors a spin-off via an IPO on the SIX, but a sale is not yet off the table." Investors, at any rate, like his vision. Rosengren enjoys "an almost phenomenal reputation", writes Aargauer Zeitung.


Ralph Hamers (UBS) advances sustainability and digitalization

Roberto Cirillo moves up to second place in the ranking. The CEO of Swiss Post emphasizes at every opportunity that the company does not want to hold out the begging bowl to the government, according to Neue Zürcher Zeitung. "Instead, the basic service is to be cross-financed in the medium term through new business activities. The focus here is on the communications services division, which was founded in 2021." Cirillo, who is regarded as an assertive and "strong CEO" (Aargauer Zeitung), is responsible for several company takeovers.

No change in third place: With sustainability and digitalization, UBS CEO Ralph Hamers is consistently advancing two major topics of the banking industry, Neue Zürcher Zeitung notes. The Dutchman is thus clearly putting his mark on the major bank after one and a half years in office - with a successful record: in his first year in office, 2021, UBS achieved a net profit of US$ 7.5 billion. "That is the highest profit in 15 years," writes Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.


Airline tickets at SBB, no more alcohol at Migros

Fourth place also remains unchanged, although Vincent Ducrot's (Swiss Federal Railways, SBB ) positive image among his staff is faltering. "Since taking office two years ago, the SBB CEO has created a lot of goodwill for himself among the workforce. Now, however, the mood could change. Last week, SBB announced cost-cutting measures," reports SonntagsZeitung. At the same time, Ducrot is working on an expansion of the business model. In future, SBB may also sell airline tickets and hotel stays at its travel centers - a real change in strategy for the company, writes Aargauer Zeitung.

Fabrice Zumbrunnen, chairman of the board of Migros, concludes the ranking in fifth place. In the past quarter, the retail company’s focus was above all on a much-discussed vote by delegates of the federation of cooperatives: In future, alcohol will no longer be sold in Migros shops. A decision that fits Zumbrunnen's "tidying-up strategy": "He has spruced up the online shop, sold the Globus department store chain, restructured the Ex Libris book chain and sold the Interio furniture chain," Tages-Anzeiger sums up.


For the CEO image ranking of SonntagsZeitung, UNICEPTA analyzed 569 articles that were published in leading Swiss media as well as Spiegel, FAZ, Handelsblatt, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Economist from January to June 2022. The ranking is based on results from the UNICEPTA "SMI Benchmark", with which the media & data intelligence provider continuously records the media presence of all SMI CEOs (plus Swiss Post, SBB, Coop, Glencore and Migros) as well as the tone of media coverage.


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