"Banking will always exist, banks probably won't"

The startup Alpian wants to shake up the Swiss private banking market. Werbewoche.ch asked Alpian CMO Roman Balzan how the startup plans to master this task and talked to Foundry founder Sacha Moser about communications work for innovative companies.

Alpian CMO Roman Balzan (left) and Foundry founder Sacha Moser in front of a twin poster of the current Foundry campaign. (Image: zVg.)


Roman Balzan, vor two years, you - as an ex-Googler, then as Lime's first European employee, with the best prospects for a comfortable tech career - put everything on the line and became CMO of Alpian become. What made you decide to take this step?  

Roman Balzan: The steps from Google to Lime and finally to Alpian were actually smaller than can be assumed. There are definitely some similarities. Google was about simplifying access to information, Lime was about access to sustainable mobility for all. Alpian is now about providing access to the world of private banking. I see giving people access to opportunities that may have been previously unattainable as meaningful. We want to inspire and encourage people to engage with topics around finance, investing and wealth creation.


What values do you want people to associate your brand with? 

Our goal is to guide people to their own vision of wealth - what we call "Wealth Beyond Money." Everyone's idea of wealth is different. There is no one-size-fits-all solution - because, simply put, these range from everyday banking to long-term investing.


What is the exact offer of Alpian?

Through the app, customers have direct access to asset management and our financial experts, who provide personal and straightforward advice - just like at a private bank. On the other hand, you have a debit card and a multi-currency account in four currencies to carry out daily transactions and banking. I like to call this approach "personalized premium banking".


And what does Alpian do differently?

We combine the best of human and system intelligence. Our technology can consider thousands of parameters and scenarios to create a uniquely optimized investment portfolio. Combined with the expertise of experienced investment professionals who listen to the needs of each individual client because they know that there is also a very personal component to wealth creation.


What role do your customers play in this?

We encourage our clients to incorporate their own values into their personal approach to wealth creation. Whether it's impact investing, geographic preferences, or optimizing for specific goals, they should pursue their personal vision of wealth beyond money.


You want a radical realignment in the way we deal with wealth management. Why is that necessary?

We founded Alpian with one question in mind: "How can we give more people - who have some money set aside and do nothing with it - access to modern private banking and forward-looking investment services, while taking care of their everyday banking needs?" This is not to say that the pursuit of wealth is easy. But the mindset and skills needed to pursue wealth can be made more accessible. And interesting.


Which customers do you focus on?

Alpian is aimed at an up-and-coming generation of people who want to get more out of their finances. They have goals, ambitions and values that their wealth should reflect.


Sacha Moser, Foundry is known for liking to work with brands that radically challenge the "status quo". Why do such projects have such a magnetic effect on you and your team? 

Sacha Moser: Honestly, there is no magnet with which we work. Nor have we searched, but we are always found. Our direction since inception has been simple: partner with innovative companies that go much deeper than just "advertising." Of course, I understand that this may seem like a magnet to the outside world, but our mindset and approach is most successfully based on sustainable partnerships.


Banking is a highly regulated business, shaped by legislation and tradition. Has this changed in Your work for Alpian noticeable?

Banking will always exist, banks probably won't. That sounds shocking at first, and - don't get me wrong - I like good banks. But new solutions are needed and we will see banking in a very different way than we are traditionally used to. Regulations are often an overreaction, but wherever there are big challenges, innovative and new solutions will come.


Like Alpian, for example?

Alpian has a big advantage in these areas and can shape the banking of the future with a very fresh view, from the ground up. Not only rethink, but also back to the future: back to the customers, less the bank itself. In this respect, the current status quo has virtually imposed a fresh view and, I think, led to an outstanding result. The team can be very proud of that.


Tell us a bit about the idea behind the "Twin Campaign". How did you come up with it - and what do you want to express with it? 

Such ideas always emerge from a trusting collaboration, which leads to unique insights. The team quickly understood what differentiates Alpian from traditional private banks and neobanks. It's the combination of intuitive technology and experienced wealth advisors. And the key point is: each portfolio is as unique as the individual. There is no DNA twice. With that in mind, the creative team, led by Evgenia Kubas and Nitin George, came up with "No Two Alike." Since the two are basically also twins - the image (below, editor's note). is the proof - the execution was obvious.

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