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Geneva has disproportionate numbers of jobs in Switzerland

Posted on 14 October 2008 by ThomasP

The canton of Geneva occupies 0.6% of the surface area of Switzerland but employs roughly 8% of the salaried Work force in Switzerland and is responsible for a gross product of roughly $ 35 billion, roughly 8% of the Swiss GDP.

As to jobs, Geneva has practically a world record with approximately 2 jobs for three inhabitants (For a total population of about 450,000 there are 297,000 Jobs in Geneva). There are also roughly 75,000 cross border workers who work in Switzerland but live in neighboring France or Germany or Italy.

According to the Geneva Cantonal Bank’s statistics, the average salary in Geneva has continued to rise. During the 90’s, Geneva salaries were less than those in Zurich. However salaries in Geneva have now outstripped salaries in Zurich, with the average salary in Geneva now roughly CHF 6350, approximately 15% higher than the Swiss average, and about CHF 100 higher than Zurich’s average. The high average salaries for jobs in Geneva is largely explainable by the Jobs in Geneva Switzerland

high proportion of jobs in private banks, jobs in trading companies, and jobs in the financial services industries, all of which pull the salary statistics higher. Roughly 10% of workers in Geneva have salaries higher than CHF 12,400 per month.

Geneva is also the canton with the most glaring discrepancies between high salaries and low salaries.

In Geneva 85% of the small and medium size companies employ fewer than 10 persons. But over a third of the corporate landscape in Geneva (measured by number of jobs) is large multinational companies. Among the large employers of Geneva are the banks – UBS, Credit Suisse, BNP Paribas, HSBC, Pictet, Lombard Odier Darier Hentsch, Deutsche Bank,… – and then there are the luxury brands, and other multinationals, such as Rolex (4000 jobs), Proctor and Gamble (2500 jobs), Firmenich (1600 jobs), The Richemont Group (1400 jobs), Patek Philippe (1200 jobs), Merck Serono (1000 jobs), Givaudan (800 jobs), Chopard (700 jobs), Japan Tobacco (600 jobs), Franck Muller(600 jobs) and Du Pont(600 jobs).

The luxury watch industry alone brings in over $1 billion in annual revue to the canton of Geneva.

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Proctor and Gamble – Major Geneva Employer

Posted on 29 May 2008 by Heidi

Proctor and Gamble has risen to become the 3rd largest employer in the canton of Geneva, responsible for more jobs in Geneva than any other company, except Migros and UBS. Specializing in beauty products, a sector showing strong growth over the past several years, Proctor and Gamble is a major actor offering work in Switzerland in the corporate world.

Last April in Geneva they had a recruitment event at their innovation center in Petit Lancy, where the manager of the Lacoste brand welcomed graduating students from across Europe and subjected them to a recruitment workshop in which they had to prove themselves by imagining a new ad campaign for the Brand to stimulate sales. The students were given the advice to take account of the diversity of the product line (casual T-shirts, dress shirts, perfumes,…) and to also consider how competing brands situate themselves –such as Armani or Calvin Klein — and were a set loose for the day with the admonition to be creative and generate enthusiasm.

Proctor and Gambles also owns beauty products brands like Lacoste

Divided into roughly 15 groups, the students compete for the entire day, through their proposals and ideas, for the attention of Proctor and Gamble’s recruiters. The workshop/recruitment trial is also promoted as a means for students to get a close-up look at the Proctor and Gamble corporate environment and have an idea of their work in Geneva should they join the company.

The second day of the 2-day event, the students are individually interviewed and the Recruiting Director gives out scores for the two-day trial. Our of 420 candidates who applied for the event, 100 were invited and 20 will receive an offer of employment to work in Geneva at the Proctor and Gamble offices, the headquarters for the beauty products line.

When Proctor and Gamble opened its doors in Geneva in 1999, they started with 250 employees. There are currently, less than 10 years later, more than 2500.

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Jobs in the Perfume and Aromas Industry

Posted on 16 September 2007 by Heidi

Among the unusual industries that make up the Swiss economy is the chemical industry.

Perfume and aroma manufacturers are an important contributor to professional work opportunities in Switzerland. The Swiss perfume industry prefers to flourish outside of the public spotlight but is nonetheless omnipresent in daily life: from toothpaste, to shower gel, cosmetics, perfumes, detergents and food additives.

In Dubendorf, near Zurich, Givaudan has an enormous manufacturing plant where the aromas and flavors in vogue as well as those in development for the future are produced.

The Givaudan premises employs roughly 450 people, many in chemistry and laboratory fields.

At the Givaudan plant, the smell is all around you. The visitor is immediately struck by the odors, difficult to identify, and changing as one walks about the premises.

At Givaudan, the professionals involved in making the scents have highly developed olfactory senses and are capable of identifying hundreds of different smells, which they associate with a souvenir or an emotion as a mnemonic device.

Givaudan trains groups of specialists, highly selected among the professionals who apply each year, for tuition at the Perfume School established in Paris.

In order to be a successful professional in the field of developing aromas, one needs both experience and a powerful memory.

The Givaudan plant dates to the late 19th century, and part of the buildings harbor the production of more than 4000 aromas in powder and liquid form, destined for a range of multinationals in the food industry. Givaudan is the world leader in aromas and fragrances having purchased the Dutch Quest last year. In Switzerland, the chemical sector, which includes the perfume and aromas industries, is an important sector which contributes thousands of jobs and demands highly skilled professionals.

Part of the production is entirely automated via complex machinery which do the mixing of the chemistry. Other mixtures are done in small quantities manually by the employees, carefully controlled by olfactory testing, before being delivered to their buyers. The manufacturing is not limited to the Zurich site; there are other subsidiaries in over 40 countries.

In the laboratories in Dubendorf near Zurich, the R&D is located, and perfumes and aromas are developed here. The company spends roughly $ 200 million per year on its R&D activities to discover new molecules whose olfactory properties can be added to its already impressive list of patented aromas.

The difference, in the perfume industry, is not just in the invention of new aromas. The proper production of the resulting perfume must be done correctly. Givaudan produces on average at least 2-4 new aromas each year.

Among the most recent discoveries of Givaudan introduced into the market were ‘Florymoss,’ ‘Pomarose’ (a mixture of apple and rose), and ‘Javanol’ (a mixture that reproduces the odor of sandalwood). These synthetic perfumes are usually used in the detergent and washing industries, and the rest in the fine perfumes industry.

Scientists at Givaudan are currently active in making citrus perfumes. Smell is an emotional sense and the vocabulary is often lacking to describe the variety of odors we perceive. This is a big problem when it comes time to present a pallet of odors and aromas to clients.

To accomplish this, Givaudan had to develop several years back a solution: a portable suitcase which could disseminate the new creations and permit immediate modifications at the customer site, according to the client’s taste.

If the labs at Dubendorf are fixed on trying to imitate as close as possible the smells of Mother Nature, the secret to reproducing the odors to be found in nature is often hard to crack.

Givaudan organizes expeditions called ‘taste treks’ where researchers go around the world to the most improbable places to seek out unknown vegetable species.

Last year, in the Valley of Death in California, Givaudan’s team found an exceptional flower resulting from strong rains. Habitually it is in the jungles from Madagascar to New Guinea, which are explored by these researchers for new smells, seeking a new flower or fruit which could give rise to a new moneymaking perfume or aroma. The teams carry special appliances which permit them to capture the essences of the plant’s or fruit’s molecules.
Once they discover a new plant species, they need to find a way to reproduce the odor’s formula. In this business, odors and aromas, molecules are patented for 20 years. Once this time limit as elapsed, the molecules fall into the public domain, where thy can be copied at will.

Thus the accent placed by Givaudan on its R&D, which is indispensable for conserving a lead in the marketplace, where other companies such as Firmenich and IGG, or Symrise or Takasago are important competitors. Givaudan also has a large center in Geneva.

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