Corporate strategy

Our corporate strategy describes what we as Zürcher Kantonalbank want to achieve. It defines our future business goals and the long-term market positions necessary to achieve them.

Close to you

As a full-service bank, we have a broadly diversified business model. We are continuing to expand our strong position in our target markets. We provide key impulses and are the partner of choice. We strive for qualitative growth and actively support our customers throughout the entire life or company cycle.

We are the bank that is "close to you" and offer the best customer experience personally and digitally. We can be found where our customers need us – anytime and across all channels. We are continuously expanding our consulting expertise. Our employees make us one of the most reliable banks in the world. We therefore ensure our attractiveness as an employer. We stand responsibly for sustainable development and are passionate about our legal public service mandate. We drive efficiency improvements by digitising and automating our business processes wherever it makes sense.

Strategic principles - Group

  • We are the bank that is "close to you".
  • The strong Zürcher Kantonalbank brand means a lot to us.
  • To foster our image as “the bank close to you”, we consistently focus on our core brand values in a proactive, responsible and passionate way.
  • We make performance promises that express our dedication to providing excellent service to both internal and external customers. 
Customer needs
  • We tailor our products and services to the needs of our customers.
  • We are a full-service bank, and that means taking all our customers’ requirements into account.
  • We organise our business by customer segment and design product and service offerings to meet their specific needs. This includes, where practical and feasible, product bundling and modularisation.
Earnings diversification
  • We make earnings diversification a top priority.
  • We are active in different markets to ensure geographical diversification.
  • Our home market is the Greater Zurich Area.
  • In some customer segments, we are active both domestically and in select international markets.
  • We also follow a dual on/offshore strategy in international private banking in select European countries.
  • Earnings and geographic diversification allows us to diversify risks and grow outside of markets where we already enjoy a very high market share (such as the Greater Zurich Area).
Qualitative growth
  • We strive for qualitative growth.
  • This can occur both organically as well as through acquisition.
  • We also invest in businesses and ventures where practical or necessary in order to provide our services, achieve our strategic goals or to meet our legally mandated mission as the cantonal bank of Zurich.
  • We work hard to make our business model, our organisation, infrastructure and processes more agile and flexible and to develop innovative products and services tailored to our customers.
Public service mandate
  • We orient ourselves on our legal public service mandate, which includes the dimensions of service, support and sustainability.
  • We comply with the principles of sustainability and the recognised rules of risk management.
  • By sustainability, we mean sustainably reconciling successful economic activity and responsibility for the environment and society.
  • In doing so, we set ourselves the following ambition, guided by the United Nations' 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):
    We actively shape sustainability issues.
    We are leaders in offering sustainable products and services.
    We accompany our customers on their journey to a more sustainable future.
  • Communication is one of the keys to being the local bank.
  • Our communication efforts comprise internal communications, public relations, public affairs, events, advertising and sponsorships.
  • All our communications are designed to align the Zürcher Kantonalbank brand and the Swisscanto Invest by Zürcher Kantonalbank product brand with our brand values.
  • Through its sponsorship activities, Zürcher Kantonalbank follows an integrated approach encompassing the three dimensions of sustainability: the economy, the environment and society.
  • We communicate with our customers, staff and the public quickly, transparently and regularly. In doing so, we follow the principle of internal before external communication.
  • Our communications strengthen the bank's credibility and reputation.
Tax compliance
  • We expect full tax compliance from our customers with regard to assets deposited with the Bank. For this reason, we avoid accepting new funds that have not or will not be taxed.
  • We expect our customers to settle any taxes owed and we assist them with doing so.
  • When receiving and investing funds from international private customers, we insist on tax compliance with regard to these funds in accordance with the laws of the countries of origin.
  • To ensure optimal results, we manage the company from our headquarters with no holding structure.
  • We equip our business units with far-reaching decision-making authority.

Other strategic principles

  • Our customers are divided into the categories "Private Core Segments", "SME Core Segments" and "Specialised Segments".
  • For market development purposes, these are further categorised based on profitability and potential.
  • We develop our customers across segments and business units, thereby greatly contributing to the growth of Zürcher Kantonalbank.
  • We differentiate ourselves from the competition by providing expert customer support and advice.
  • Our channels are thoroughly integrated and interconnected (omni-channel).
  • Our omni-channel offerings promote the "local bank" concept and strengthen our brand values.
  • The customer experience is consistent, simple and needs-oriented across all channels.
  • There is just one standard, channel-independent process. However, products and services may be delivered through specific channels, or to specific segments or customers.
  • Data (especially customer and order data) is consistently available in real time for all channels at all times.
  • The same form and quality of information are accessible to the relationship manager and the customer, with the relationship manager’s view encompassing the customer’s view as well.
  • Ease of use for customers and staff alike is ensured through process and system-supported guidelines.
  • We adjust the scope of products and services, pricing and positioning in individual channels to maximise customer benefits (needs/emotionality, availability, quality, risk reduction, etc.) and bank benefits (increased profitability, risk reduction, etc.).
  • We offer high quality while maintaining fair and competitive value for money.
Payments and deposits
  • Payments are a key part of establishing customer loyalty (anchor product).
  • Our transaction accounts and savings products are designed for the specific needs of strategic customer segments and target markets throughout their life cycle. They also help with the refinancing of our lending activities.
  • Our comprehensive portfolio of card and payment transaction products helps greatly strengthen our position as the first choice for basic banking products.
  • We consider ourselves the clear leader in financing options in the Greater Zurich area. This foundation also allows us to meet the financing needs of customers outside the region.
  • We help medium and large businesses headquartered in Switzerland to finance their activities abroad.
  • We are a select counterparty in the interbank market and provide lending to foreign banks to support our strategy.
  • To optimise earnings from our financing business, we offer consistent risk and cost-appropriate pricing.
Investments and pensions
  • We are a leader in investments and pensions for Swiss customers and a recognised partner for international customers. We also provide a cycle-independent, high-quality, innovative product and service portfolio in our Delegation, Advisory and Execution-Only service models for private and business/institutional customers.
  • We impress customers with a transparent and structured investment advisory process, a systematic investment approach with clear allocation of performance responsibility, as well as an efficient and accountable production method.
  • We utilise our expertise to offer innovative pension and insurance solutions for Pillars 2 and 3, helping to ensure a sustainably secure retirement for our customers.
Trading and capital markets
  • We are one of the leading players in our home market of Switzerland, as well as internationally, with select solutions and services.
  • We offer a broad spectrum of services in the trading, sales and capital market segments. Our solutions cover everything from interest-bearing securities and stocks, to foreign exchange and precious metals.
  • In the trading segment, our focus is on customer transactions, where our outstanding structuring competence gives us an edge.
  • We can quickly develop innovative solutions tailored to our customers’ needs.
IT, Operations & Real Estate
  • Increasing the company's profitability over the long term is a key factor for our activities in IT, Operations & Real Estate, both in terms of internal management and their responsibility in interbank decisions.
  • IT, Operations & Real Estate fulfil their performance promise with the goal of improving internal efficiency. They focus on their core functions (IT, Operations, Services, Real Estate, Information Security and Personal and Property Protection) and ensure cost transparency, as well as stringent controls for efficiency improvement measures.
  • IT, Operations & Real Estate support and shape overarching bank processes and also show the sustainable effects of overarching bank decisions or requirements.
  • Zürcher Kantonalbank practises business continuity management. To this end, IT, Operations & Real Estate determine the specifications, methods, guidelines and standards for the entire bank to ensure functioning BCM. All business units help lay the foundation for BCM by identifying critical business processes on the basis of the Business Impact Analysis, in accordance with the specifications provided by OpRisk, and by defining emergency procedures.
  • We manage the necessary debt and equity capital to meet our growth targets, with minimal risk in accordance with our risk policies.
  • Our equity capital management efforts greatly help us increase the company's value.
  • We deliberately hold more equity capital than the regulatory minimum and make it available to banks with excellent credit ratings.
  • Our equity capital allocation to our organisational units is appropriate to the risk and market.
  • Risk management is one of our core competencies.
  • We strike a perfect balance between risk and earnings, limiting risk assumption by asset managers by risk type and avoiding risk concentration as much as possible.
  • Before we take on a risk, we must first be able to identify, measure, manage and monitor it.
  • We ensure independence, objectivity and quality in business decisions through the appropriate separation of functions.
  • We employ results-driven, responsible staff who embody our values and reliably fulfil our internal and external performance promises.
  • We create a work environment that allows staff members to utilise their skills to the full.
  • We actively develop our team members with outstanding abilities into exemplary managers.
  • By providing a work environment based on trust, openness and fairness, we foster results, accountability and reliability among our staff.


Our goals are divided into four main dimensions: company, sales, core businesses and functions.

  • Fulfil and systematically develop public service mandates
  • Retain a high rating
  • Further develop the Zürcher Kantonalbank brand
  • Generate sustainable financial success
  • Expand market position
  • Strengthen support and advisory services; keep customer loyalty high
  • Further develop channels
Core business
  • Provide an attractive product portfolio and optimize core business processes
  • Develop skills and optimize employee placement
  • Maintain position as one of the most desirable employers for results-driven employees
  • Keep employee satisfaction high
  • Optimize logistics processes
  • Manage risk