Davos Notebook

Bankers – Ever thought about working for Big Pharma?

December 8, 2008

    Are you an out-of-work banker looking for a new job with
some stability? Considered the drugs industry?

    Daniel Vasella, chief executive of Swiss pharmaceuticals
company Novartis, reckons his sector is a pretty good place
to work when compared to “mercenary” banking.

    “We are not in a banking industry, where they fire a
thousand investment bankers
and then a year after they hire
a thousand investment bankers,” Vasella told Reuters.

    “And these people (investment bankers) are like, not
soldiers, but mercenaries. And they go and buy troops and
it’s just money, and you feel that’s the only currency they
know.”

    If Novartis had to cut back as the downturn bites,
Vasella said he would prefer creative solutions like reduced
working time rather than making blue-collar workers — who
might struggle to find a new position — redundant.

    “We are not in the same industry (as banking), it’s very different,”
he said.

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