Vaud International Business Award
The strength of the canton of Vaud lies widely in the diversity of its economy, which has earned recognition far beyond the cantonal and national boundaries. In order to reward companies that have contributed to the image and international reputation of the canton of Vaud, the Department of Economy, Innovation and Sports (DEIS), the Vaud Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CVCI) and the Economic Development - State of Vaud (DEV) have set up the Vaud International Business Award.
The purpose of this award is to highlight the contribution of international companies, the diversification they bring and their positive impact on our economy.
Three distinct prizes are awarded:
- Category "Foreign company": foreign international company based in the canton of Vaud
- Category "Swiss company": Swiss exporting company
- Category "Jury's special prize": additional organization that the jury wishes to reward
The organisation of the Prize is coordinated by International Link, the CVCI's service dedicated to international entities.
Philippe Leuba, Minister of Economic Affairs, Innovation and Sport, Philippe Prat - CEO, Plumettaz, Jean-Michel Rapin, Fondateur - Fromagerie Le Maréchal, Christophe Baur, Plant Manager - SCHOTT Suisse SA, Jean-Frédéric Berthoud, Director Development Economic – State of Vaud, Claudine Amstein, Director of the CVCI.
Category "Foreign Company"
SCHOTT Suisse SA
SCHOTT Suisse SA is a leader in specialty glass. The company provides components and technical solutions in several domains. The German group SCHOTT is present in 34 countries with some 15’000 employees globally, including 200 in the canton of Vaud.
Category "Swiss Company"
Having originally developed capstan winches for the vineyards, Plumettaz S.A., based in Bex, has been innovating with mechanical solutions since 1923. The company has 100 employees in the canton of Vaud and its machines are sold in more than 90 countries.
Jury's Special Prize
Fromagerie Le Maréchal
Created 10 years ago at the Granges-Marnand cheesemaking shop, Le Maréchal cheese stands out as innovative in a competitive context. Fromagerie Le Maréchal has ten employees in their highly modern factory. Of the 360 tons produced each year, 90 are sold abroad.
The three companies featured in the video below, based in the canton of Vaud, are regular partners of the prize-winners. They reflect the ongoing collaboration between SME and international entities.
|PHILIPPE LEUBA |
State Councillor, Minister of Economic Affairs, Innovation and Sport
|AUDE PUGIN |
President, Vaud Chamber of commerce and industry
|RÉMI WALBAUM |
|JEAN-PHILIPPE BONARDI |
Dean, Faculty of economics (HEC), University of Lausanne
|DOMINIQUE TURPIN |
Dean of External Relations, IMD
|CHRISTOPHE BAUR |
Plant Manager - SCHOTT Suisse SA
|JEAN-MICHEL RAPIN |
Founder - Fromagerie Le Maréchal
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Lausanne, 21 november 2019 - The winners of the 6th annual Vaud International Business Awards (PVEI) were announced on Thursday, 21 November, at a ceremony held at IMD. The three winning companies are: Schott Suisse SA, which makes high-tech optical components, Plumettaz, which has been developing innovative cable systems since 1923, and Fromagerie Le Maréchal, a family-run cheesemaking business. The PVEI awards are given jointly every year by the Vaud Department of Economy, Innovation and Sports (DEIS), the Vaud Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CVCI) and Economic Development - State of Vaud (DEV) to recognize three thriving local businesses that have also made a name for themselves internationally. Some 350 people attended the ceremony.
Schott Suisse SA, based at Y-Parc in Yverdon-les-Bains, was the winner in the Best Foreign Company category. The firm was created in 2000 when German company Schott – a market leader in specialty glass – acquired Guinchard Verre Optique, a company founded in 1968 that became a fully-owned Schott subsidiary in 2003. Today Schott is known as a top supplier of advanced optic systems for a range of industries including aviation, space, healthcare, manufacturing and microlithography. It is present in 34 countries with some 15,000 employees, including around 200 at its Yverdon site, which specializes in thin film deposition for anti-reflective glass, interference filters and conductors. The site also trains several apprentices every year. Schott Suisse SA’s revenue doubled between 2003 and 2018 to reach CHF 49 million, half of which was generated outside Switzerland.
Plumettaz SA, based in Bex, won the Best Swiss Company award. It was founded in 1923 as a maker of capstan winches for Vaud’s vineyards but has since expanded into cable-laying equipment for telecom and power cables. Its systems, which are sold under the Plumett brand, are used in the railroad, snow-vehicle and construction industries. Known as a technological leader in its field, the company holds several patents and has developed a novel method for laying underground cables with the help of air and water injection systems. With Plumettaz’s technology, operators can lay longer cables more easily – which is particularly useful for transmitting power generated at onshore and offshore wind farms, for example. The company has 125 employees worldwide and 100 in Vaud, and offers several apprenticeships (mainly in mechanical engineering). Its systems are sold in more than 90 countries, and over 85% of its revenue is generated outside Switzerland.
Fromagerie Le Maréchal, based in Granges-Marnand, won the Special Jury award. Jean-Michel Rapin and his wife took over a local cheesemaking shop in 1985, and Rapin created a new cheese, Le Maréchal, in 1994. Their specialty cheese is made from raw, omega-3-rich cow’s milk and ripened with aromatic organic herbs, using a traditional method. This authentic Swiss cheese is popular around the world, as 90 of the 360 metric tons produced each year are sold abroad. Although Rapin uses a traditional cheesemaking process, the equipment at his factory is all highly modern and he continually strives to innovate. He regularly introduces new products, like a raclette in 2019, and he feeds his cows a diet rich in flax seeds to reduce the amount of methane – a greenhouse gas – they produce. Today Fromagerie Le Maréchal has ten employees and supports around 50 jobs indirectly through the 13 local farms it hires as suppliers.
The selection panel for this year’s PVEI awards was chaired by Philippe Leuba, Vaud cantonal councillor and head of the DEIS, and included: Aude Pugin, president of the CVCI; Manuel Leuthold, president of DEV, Jean-Philippe Bonardi, dean of HEC Lausanne; Dominique Turpin, dean of external relations at IMD; and representatives of last year’s three winners – Fabrice Schertenleib, managing director of Tesa; Mikael Karlström, co-head of group HR at Bobst; and Jurgi Camblong, co-founder and CEO of Sophia Genetics.
Awarding local businesses in three categories
The PVEI awards were introduced in 2014 to recognize companies that have had their headquarters in Vaud for at least three years and have successfully expanded internationally. The companies must also play a role in boosting Vaud’s image abroad and creating jobs at home. Additional selection criteria for the Best Foreign Company award are whether the company’s goods and services are produced locally, how much it helps diversify the Vaud economy, how many of its suppliers are local, and how well it is integrated into the canton. Additional selection criteria for the Best Swiss Company award are how much the company helps train local workers, whether it has any joint R&D programs, and how much of its revenue is generated internationally. And finally, the additional selection criteria for the Special Jury award are how innovative the company is, how big of a role it plays in the local community, and to what extent it works with other local businesses. We would like to take this opportunity to thank 24heures and CNNMoney Switzerland, which provided press coverage for the PVEI awards.