The decision of the Swiss National Bank (SNB) on 15 January 2015 to discontinue the minimum EUR/CHF exchange rate introduced in September 2011 came as quite a bombshell. It triggered shock waves whose impact cannot yet be assessed precisely. Boards are required to examine the consequences of this decision at the strategic level. A well-thought M&A strategy must in particular be adopted. Patrick Kerler explains the mains elements of such a strategy and the conditions for performing a successful M&A transaction.
The new volatility of the Swiss franc puts professional foreign exchange risk management back in the spotlight. In their article, Marcus Hofstätter and Jean-Paul Fuchs examine the need for action in relation to the steering of foreign exchange risks and show how the Board can exercise its responsibilities in this respect.
Intragroup cash pool risks have been known since the demise of Swissair. But it is only recently that the Federal Tribunal decided, in a judgment dated 16 October 2014, to treat as „de facto dividends“ the loan receivables held by subsidiaries towards their parent company or sister companies that do not comply with the arm’s length principle. In his article, Jörg Kilchmann looks at the consequences of the new rules that have to be taken into account by the Boards of Swiss group companies.
What other topics are keeping busy the audit committees of Swiss and foreign companies? Dr. Shqiponja Isufi provides an overview of the first results of a global study carried out by KPMG’s Audit Committee Institutes.
We hope that you enjoy reading this issue and wish you a happy Easter.
Philipp Hallauer Hélène Béguin