Mike Baur Makes A Change As Swiss Banking Changes
Around 2008 just when it seemed America’s housing market couldn’t get any better, the bottom fell out and banks that were once thought to be tremendous powerhouses like Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch ended up closing. But highly shocking was when this crisis made its way over to Switzerland and affected the banks there which had long been thought to be impenetrable. Swiss banks had been largely unaffected by the dot-com bubble of 2000, but with many of their assets tied up in US real estate by the late 2000s, they lost a lot of investor funds and needed the government to bail them out. Mike Baur, a former banking manager who is now a startup investor and self-made entrepreneur saw his whole life change when Swiss banking changed.
The way it used to be when Mike Baur was young was that you could enter banking while still only 16, and after you served your time as an intern, you could pursue your formal education and move your way up the ranks. Baur did just that and by the time he reached his 20s, he was already becoming one of the top advisors at the Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS), one of the country’s two largest banks. He had been with UBS about 18 years when the recession occurred. Baur left for the other big bank, Clariden Leu and he was at a point where he could have stayed on for a large compensation until he retired, but he decided to exit altogether in 2014.
What led to Mike Baur’s decision was an abundance of red tape and piles of new laws that he and many other bankers in the post-recession period found to be very taxing on their days at the office. Baur decided he was going to follow his heart into a brand new arena, the startup vehicle which was now becoming a phenomena in Swiss and other European universities. By 2015 he and his partner Max Meister officially opened the doors of the Swiss Startup Factory (SSUF), a firm in Zurich that accepts aspiring entrepreneurs from all over the world and tests their ideas to the limit to see if they have what it takes to compete in high-tech business environments. From business plan sessions, leadership seminars and making pitches and networking with investors, the SSUF has everything entrepreneurs need to build a business fast. It only takes three months to make it happen, and if you’re lucky enough to get your business running, the SSUF has free office space solutions for you.