With widespread acknowledgement of climate change and its impact on the environment, corporate organisations are now increasingly required to evaluate sustainability practices within their business. This year’s The Legal 500 GC Powerlist: Switzerland 2022 highlights, among the other myriad responsibilities of a leading in-house lawyer, the leading role that general counsel play in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) matters for their companies. ESG has evolved from being a solely ethical or social requirement to an essential corporate strategy that must be considered. Non-compliance with ESG could potentially devastate a company’s reputation while limiting market opportunities and capital raising. Corporate bodies in Switzerland are strongly encouraged to implement ESG into their operations to maintain their business in one of the most prosperous and modern free markets in the world.
Switzerland, undoubtedly seen as a leader in the traditional banking services world, now is facing the challenge of the new era of technology in finance. By offering a well-developed regulatory framework for fintech firms and digital assets, Switzerland is now a leading world fintech market, evidenced by the fact that ten percent of all global European fintech enterprises are situated in Switzerland.
As the interviews within these pages clearly show, the pandemic has accelerated in-house legal functions’ transition into utilising technology. Legal tech has helped in-house lawyers to function beyond their current capacity and budget while allowing them to effectively manage time and reduce the cost of contract complexity. Despite the hardships caused by the global crisis, in-house lawyers in Switzerland moved out of their comfort zone while focusing on adopting cutting-edge technologies into their practice.
I would like to extend the sincerest gratitude to all the general counsel and in-house lawyers who participated in this edition of the GC Powerlist: Switzerland. This edition celebrates counsel in Switzerland who successfully expanded their roles to become strategic business partners to their organisations. While helping their organisations to tackle new challenges caused by the pandemic and the development of ESG regulations and policies, in-house lawyers in Switzerland deployed innovative technologies to free up valuable but often illusive time for strategic thought.
GC Powerlist Series
Axiom is delighted to support the GC Powerlist, to play a role in recognising the innovators and trailblazers across in-house counsel in Switzerland.
The growth of the segment today known as Alternative Legal Services Providers – or ALSPs – has evolved rapidly. Over 20 years ago, Axiom created this new model with the simple idea that there was a better way to bring innovative legal services to inhouse counsel. Since that time, this category has now developed into a rapidly-expanding ecosystem with various industry segments now focused on this same charter.
Axiom shares and meets the higher standards of its clients and lawyers, connecting growing mid-market and Fortune 500 companies with the world’s deepest bench of experienced, specialized legal talent. 99% of clients recommend us, and four out of five rate our lawyers as equal to or better than lawyers from a law firm.
Innovation and change is hard work. We offer congratulations to those recognised in the GC Powerlist: Switzerland 2022, highlighting the strength and innovation displayed by legal leaders across Switzerland, and reinforces the highly strategic role of corporate counsel in today’s business environment.
Baker McKenzie is one of the largest law firms in Switzerland. Our offices in Geneva and Zurich have been an integral part of the Swiss legal landscape for more than half a century, firmly establishing us as a prominent force for our domestic and foreign clients. Our vast, experienced team of experts, composed of more than 130 lawyers, is providing Swiss and multinational industry players, financial institutions, private equity houses and insurance companies with top-tier legal advice. We have a fantastic track record for domestic and cross-border advice in all areas of business law. The dedication to providing clients with practical and innovative solutions, along with the quality of our work, has been consistently recognized with top rankings by leading global legal directories.
As global citizens, industry savvy, diverse and with a thirst for innovation, our horizon does not end in Switzerland. Our unique global footprint with 78 offices in 46 countries allows us to bring the right talent at the right time to every client issue, regardless of where the client is. And since our clients want lawyers who are prepared to lead, differentiate and adapt in a constantly changing world, we have built on our strengths and abilities to adopt a new type of thinking and use cutting-edge legal technologies to help clients overcome the challenges of competing in today’s new world economic order.
After a three-year break, The Legal 500 was back in Zurich to launch the fifth edition of the GC Powerlist: Switzerland. Our research editor Allan Cohen and senior key account manager David Freeman shared a wonderful evening at beautiful guild house Zunfthaus zur Meisen with our awarded GCs and members of the Swiss in-house legal community. A huge thank you to Axiom and Baker McKenzie for hosting the successful event, and to Dr Maria-Antonella Bino, Elisabeth Leimbacher, Alessandro Celli and Daniel Hayter for their inspirational speeches.