Bank J. Safra Sarasin

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  Bank J. Safra Sarasin AG
Country SwitzerlandSwitzerland Switzerland
Seat Basel
legal form Corporation
ISIN CH0038389307
IID 8750
founding 1841
Business dataTemplate: Infobox credit institute / maintenance / data out of dateTemplate: Infobox credit institute / maintenance / year missing
Employee 1981 (December 31, 2014)
Board of Directors Ilan Hayim (President)
Pierre-Alain Bracher (Vice President)
Board Edmond Michaan ( CEO )

The J. Safra Sarasin AG (until 2013 Bank Sarasin & Cie AG ) is a Founded in 1841, Swiss private bank based in Basel , which is owned by the Brazilian Safra Group is located.

Business activity

Its core activities are investment advice and asset management for private and institutional clients as well as investment fund business , including with sustainability funds . Investment foundations, corporate finance and financial analysis complete the range of services. In addition, it has a 57.5 percent stake in bank zweiplus , which specializes in investment and pension advice and acts as a product and processing platform for customers of other financial service providers and direct customers .

The J. Safra Sarasin Group employed full-time equivalents at the end of 2014 1981 employees and managed by the end of 2014 147 400 000 000 Swiss francs in client assets. The bank from 1987 to 2013, the Swiss stock exchange SIX Swiss Exchange listed .

In addition to its headquarters in Basel, the J. Safra Sarasin Group has locations in Bern , Geneva , Lugano , Lucerne , Zurich , Doha , Dubai , Dublin , Frankfurt am Main , Gibraltar , Guernsey , Hong Kong , London , Luxembourg , Monaco , Munich , Nassau , Panama , Poznan , Singapore and Warsaw .



The history of the bank began in the middle of the 19th century. Johannes Riggenbach-Huber, the son of a simple worker in a traditional Basel ribbon factory, made a career in the Ehinger bank from apprentice to partner.

On February 20, 1841, Johannes Riggenbach founded his own company, which was dedicated to trading, forwarding and banking. In the second year of operation, his son Friedrich "Fritz" Riggenbach joined his father's company, which he ran himself from 1860 after his father's death. The bank flourished and began trading on the Ring of the Basel Stock Exchange in 1876.

On January 1, 1900, Alfred Sarasin-Iselin took over the company from Fritz Riggenbach and founded the general partnership A. Sarasin & Cie . With Arthur Streichenberg-Mylius . Since then, Sarasin has remained part of the company.

Under the leadership of Alfred Sarasin, the bank developed into one of the most renowned and traditional private banks in the Swiss financial center.

1954 to 2007

Alfred Emanuel Sarasin followed his grandfather's path in a number of ways: He was involved in the Swiss banking sector well beyond his own business and was President of the Swiss Bankers Association from 1965 to 1986 .

In 1987 the A. Sarasin & Cie company was transformed into a limited partnership with the name Bank Sarasin & Cie. transformed.

In 2002 the house was converted into a public limited company. The Dutch Rabo Group took over a newly issued block of shares including an option to purchase an additional block of shares from the existing shareholders. When this option was exercised at the end of 2006, Rabobank held 46.1 percent of the share capital in April 2007 and a majority of 68.6 percent.

Takeover by the Safra Group and change of name

On November 25, 2011 it was announced that the Brazilian Safra Group ( Joseph Safra ) would take over the block of shares of the Dutch Rabobank for 1.04 billion Swiss francs.

On January 3, 2012, Sarasin announced that customer data had been stolen by an employee of the bank and passed on to external third parties without authorization. The injured customer is the family of the President of the Board of Directors of the Swiss National Bank , Philipp Hildebrand . The employee who worked in IT support was fired. He turned himself in to the police. Bank Sarasin also filed criminal charges against third parties. These documents played a key role in the Hildebrand affair and the resignation of Philipp Hildebrand.

The sale of the majority stake to Safra Holding was completed at the end of July 2012, after which it held 50.15% of the share capital and 71.01% of the voting rights. A public purchase offer by Safra for all registered shares in the public was concluded in October 2012, after which Safra held shares, which corresponded to 99.47% of the voting rights. Safra introduced then a cancellation of all that are available yet publicly held registered shares, which took place in April, 2013. After cancellation of the bank at the request of Safra Group as of May 21, 2013 shares were listed on the Swiss stock exchange SIX Swiss Exchange delisted .

As part of the upcoming merger of Bank Sarasin and Bank J. Safra (Switzerland) to form Bank J. Safra Sarasin AG, the bank announced on May 27, 2013 that the previous managing director of Bank J. Safra (Switzerland), Edmond Michaan , Sarasin's managing director Joachim H. Strähle will replace with the future merger.


Sarasin has invested in the palm oil company IOI through its own shares or customer investments. Fastenopfer and Bread for All demand that banks - especially Sarasin and Credit Suisse - comply with human rights and sustainability standards. And to demand this compliance from the customers as well. Sarasin also took part in Cum Ex deals, with which hundreds of millions escaped the German tax authorities through the refund of unpaid taxes. The bank's former tax chief testified to the Cologne Public Prosecutor's Office that he had considered the construction to be "tax-difficult" and "ethically / morally reprehensible", but that his concerns had been viewed "as an obstacle to business".

After the involvement in the HVB tax affair and the lawsuits of investors in the insolvent wind farm builder Windreich, the bank hit the headlines again in spring 2014 because of controversial cum-ex transactions (so-called dividend stripping ). The bank had sold the tax-damaging dividend arbitrage funds mainly to celebrities such as Carsten Maschmeyer , Clemens Tönnies , Erwin Müller or the Portuguese billionaire Américo Amorim , as it became known in early 2014. The bank is suspected of targeting unjustified tax credits with questionable deals. The bank was apparently aware of the risks, as internal documents show. Those affected publicly assert that they have not been informed about the nature of the funds and, according to media reports, feel deceived. You have announced that you will be suing the bank and bringing criminal charges against the people involved. The victims feel confirmed by the bank's internal documents, according to which the funds are "to be located in the area of ​​tax avoidance (...)". The Süddeutsche Zeitung reported in April 2014 that the bank had been blackmailed for this: an alleged financial advisor named Jürgen S. had asked Sarasin for a sum of 1.5 million euros in 2011. Should the money not be paid to him, he threatened to inform the German tax authorities about Sarasin's stock exchange deal at the expense of the tax authorities. A criminal complaint for extortion presented Sarasin until 2014. Compared to the NZZ am Sonntag had Ilan Hayim, Chairman of the Board of Bank Sarasin, regarding left given the impending wave of lawsuits in May 2014: "Materially are irrelevant complaints. They do not affect our business ”. Erwin Müller claims (as of April 2017) 45 million euros in damages from the bank. Sarasin accepted the demand, which has made it final.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b Entry in the bank master of Swiss Interbank Clearing
  2. Board of Directors on the website of Bank J. Safra Sarasin AG
  3. Management on the website of Bank J. Safra Sarasin AG
  4. Bank Sarasin disappears from the stock exchange note . In: Der Standard from November 13, 2012
  5. a b Delisting notice Bank Sarasin & Cie AG.  ( Page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. In: SIX Group of May 6, 2013 (PDF file; 70 kB)@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /  
  6. a b Detailed chronicle of the company's history (October 2010) Bank Sarasin's own publication, (pdf) online via ( Memento from July 11, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 746 kB)
  7. Bank Sarasin goes to Safra. In: NZZ Online from November 25, 2011
  8. Safra Group acquires majority in Bank Sarasin. Media release of November 25, 2011 (PDF file; 80 kB)
  9. Violation of bank client confidentiality by an employee of Bank Sarasin. ( Memento of August 20, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Press release of January 3, 2012 (PDF file; 40 kB)
  10. NZZ Online: Bank Sarasin also files criminal charges against third parties. January 6, 2012.
  11. Closing takes place , notification from Bank Sarasin, July 31, 2012
  12. Safra applies for the invalidation of all B registered shares of Bank Sarasin & Cie AG that are still in the public domain. Media release of October 23, 2012
  13. Delisting on May 21, 2013 planned: Appeal Court of the Canton of Basel-Stadt declares the remaining public B registered shares of Bank Sarasin to be invalid. Media release of May 2, 2013
  14. Bank Sarasin announces the reorganization of the management in order to successfully implement the merger between Bank Sarasin and Bank J. Safra to form Bank J. Safra Sarasin AG . Media release of May 27, 2013
  15. Der Bund : Churches targeting Credit Suisse In: on March 7, 2017, accessed on November 12, 2017.
  16. ^ The biggest tax robbery in German history , Lutz Ackermann, Benedikt Becker, Manuel Daubenberger, Philip Faigle, Karsten Polke-Majewski, Felix Rohrbeck, Christian Salewski, Oliver Schröm, Die Zeit , June 8, 2017
  17., December 5, 2013: HVB affair covers Sarasin Bank
  18., December 5, 2012: Steinbrück cancels lecture at Sarasin Bank
  19., July 8, 2013: Windreich: Lawsuit against Sarasin is ongoing ( Memento of May 8, 2014 in the Internet Archive )
  20., February 17, 2014 In the million dollar trap
  21., March 19, 2014: The dubious deals of celebrities in Switzerland ( Memento from May 25, 2014 in the Internet Archive )
  22. a b Tagesanzeiger, November 6, 2013: Bank Sarasin and the “Summit Storm” project
  23., April 20, 2014: A row for millions in high society
  24. manager magazin, April 16, 2014: Wave of lawsuits is rolling towards Bankhaus Sarasin
  25., April 15, 2014: Another lawsuit against Sarasin in Germany
  26., April 11, 2014: Hush money to a phantom ( Memento from April 12, 2014 in the Internet Archive )
  27. Süddeutsche Zeitung, March 28, 2014, p. 25: "Sleepless Nights in Basel" (Author: Klaus Ott)
  28. NZZ, May 4, 2014
  30. Bank Sarasin will pay drugstore king Müller 45 million. In: November 16, 2018, accessed November 16, 2018 .

Coordinates: 47 ° 33 '0.1 "  N , 7 ° 35' 23.1"  E ; CH1903:  611,376  /  266600