Raymond J. Baer is stepping down from his position as chairman of Swiss private bank Julius Baer, and will lead a special committee advising the board on the bank’s engagement with U.S tax authorities.
Baer, a member of the bank’s founding family, will become honorary chairman from April, and will be replaced by current board member Daniel Sauter.
The bank claimed that the departure of its chairman, who has held that position for nine years of his 25-year career in the institution, was not linked to the inclusion of Julius Baer on a list of 11 Swiss banks the US authorities are investigating for helping Americans evade tax.
In February, Boris Collardi, Julius Baer’s CEO, told reporters that the bank expected to be fined over the allegations but had not yet booked the loss.
End of an era
Baer was the last family member involved in running the bank, and oversaw the family’s renunciation of majority voting rights when the single share structure was introduced in 2005.
He said: “The metamorphosis to turn our company from a family business into a public company in all aspects is concluded.
“After a quarter of a century with Julius Baer time has come to open a new chapter in my life and to therefore re-balance my relationship with the group.”
A spokesman for Julius Baer said the special committee he will chair will have an advisory capacity and will operate on an ad-hoc basis on behalf of the board.
Raymond Baer will remain a passionate ambassador for the bank, the spokesman added.
Sauter joined the board of Julius Baer in 2007 and has extensive experience in banking and commodities.
He was chief financial officer at Glencore during a fifteen-year career with the commodities giant, and later spent seven years at miner Xstrata.