Credit Suisse Chronicle: 167 Years of Company History – Economy
1856 The politician and businessman Alfred Escher founds the Schweizerische Kreditanstalt (SKA) to finance the expansion of the railway network and the industrialization of the Switzerland to promote. 1870 SKA opens its first foreign agency in New York.
1876 The bank moves into its new headquarters on Zurich’s Paradeplatz; she opened her first branch outside of Zurich almost three decades later in Basel.
1939 SKA founds the Swiss American Corporation in New York.
1964 SKA receives a license as a full bank in New York.
1977 The money laundering scandal known as the Chiasso affair results in a historic loss and accelerates the bank’s transition to an international financial group.
1978 SKA and the US investment bank First Boston start a cooperation to get active in the London bond market.
1982 CS Holding is founded as a sister company of SKA to hold shares in industrial companies.
1988 As part of a bailout, CS Holding acquires a 45 percent stake in US investment bank First Boston and renames it CS First Boston.
1989 SKA is integrated into CS Holding as a subsidiary.
1990 The group takes a majority stake in CS First Boston and buys the Swiss private bank Bank Leu.
1993 The group takes over the Volksbank, the fourth largest bank in Switzerland, and a year later the Neue Aargauer Bank is bought.
1997 As part of a restructuring, CS Holding is converted into Credit Suisse Group and the name SKA is dropped; A strategic partner is also acquired in the form of the insurer Winterthur.
1999 The group buys Warburg, Pincus & Co.’s wealth management business and, a year later, Wall Street firm Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette.
2002 A reorganization creates two entities: Credit Suisse Financial Services and Credit Suisse First Boston; two years later, with the addition of Winterthur, this becomes three units.
2005 Credit Suisse and CSFB merge, the Credit Suisse First Boston brand name is no longer used.
2006 The group sells Winterthur to the French insurer AXA.
2007/2008 In contrast to the competitor UBS the bank survives the global financial crisis without government support.
2013 The group buys Morgan Stanley’s wealth management business in Europe, Middle East and Africa.
2015 Led by CEO Tidjane Thiam, the group will be reorganized into three wealth management divisions supported by two investment banking divisions.
2020 February A scandal surrounding the bank’s covert surveillance activities leads to the resignation of Tidjane Thiam. His successor is Thomas Gottstein.
March The US investment fund Archegos collapses and gives Credit Suisse a loss of 5.5 billion dollars. In the same month, Credit Suisse is forced to freeze four supply chain financing funds totaling $10 billion. These were linked to the insolvent British financial company Greensill Capital – the bank had previously sold the funds to its customers as low-risk products.
2021 Chairman of the Board of Directors Antonio Horta-Osorio resigns less than nine months after taking office after violating corona quarantine regulations. Alex Lehmann will be his successor.
2022 July The bank appoints restructuring expert Ulrich Körner as successor to CEO Thomas Gottstein and announces another strategic review.
October The bank announces a comprehensive corporate restructuring. This provides for a capital increase of four billion francs, a reduction of 9,000 jobs by the end of 2025 and the spin-off of the investment bank into CS First Boston (CSFB). The Saudi National Bank announces that it will buy shares and thus acquire a stake of up to 9.9 percent.
2023 February Credit Suisse reports a loss of 7.3 billion Swiss francs, the highest since the financial crisis of 2008. The bank announces that it will buy the investment banking business of the consulting boutique M.Klein & Co for 175 million dollars to bring it into CSFB. The former CS board member and founder of M.Klein & CO, Michael Klein, is to become head of the newly established CSFB.
March Concerns about the bankruptcy of California’s Silicon Valley Bank have caused Credit Suisse shares to plummet by more than 30 percent to a record low of EUR 1.55. The Swiss National Bank (SNB) says it will provide the bank with liquidity if needed. Credit Suisse grabs this lifeline a few hours later and announces that it will borrow up to CHF 50 billion from the SNB. But the calming of the markets only lasts for a short time. The Swiss authorities therefore pushed on a takeover of Credit Suisse by the Swiss industry leader UBS.