Following a number of roles at Swisscom and Hewlett-Packard, Andrej Golob recently became the Chief Executive Officer of Equatex. We spoke to him about his ambitions for Equatex, his distinguished professional background and his love for sport.
What were your initial thoughts on Equatex coming into the company?
First, I think it’s a young and dynamic company, but at the same time, it has a lot of history. It’s an extraordinary combination of a start-up with the spirit of something very new, but we are also very experienced and have many long-established relationships with leading clients and partners. The other thing is that I am amazed at the global banking experience we have – we are multinational and understand many different markets across the world, which makes us a global banking player.
Can you tell us more about your career before Equatex? I understand you worked for Swisscom.
After I graduated from university, I worked for Hewlett-Packard for 19 years. It was a great company and I had a wonderful time with roles both in Switzerland and across the world. I then joined Swisscom as CEO of a sister company, and over the last five years, we integrated this company into Swisscom, and combined products around end-user services with the Swisscom offering. These are two great companies – local and international heroes, so it was an interesting time.
What do you think sets Equatex apart from its competitors?
We are a global player – we not only set up customers on a global basis but have local expertise in key markets. We also have an easy account structure for onboarding new companies and plans so it is easy to do business with us.
What do you think are the main challenges facing companies when they’re implementing incentive schemes?
I think it’s a complex environment for clients – with different regulation in almost every country. This is definitely one of the main challenges and the other one is how to create a very efficient and yet compliant share plan that is easy to understand, and then communicate this plan to potential participants.
Why is innovation so important in the industry?
Equatex is investing heavily in user experience like EquateMobile or the redesign of EquatePlus – businesses need to focus on and offer a unique consumer-like experience but also allow multichannel communication. Participants expect the same experience, whether it is managing their share plans or booking a journey with Uber or accommodation through Airbnb.
What are you looking forward to most about your new role?
Meeting clients across the globe, building up relationships, and bringing my technology, end-user experience into the share plan industry and the Equatex offering. We are a technology company – of course, we are also a global banking service provider but the most important part is the experience around the technology in order to make this happen.
2015 has been a big year for Equatex, where do you see the business a year from now?
I think at the moment we have great momentum, and this will help the success to continue. In one year we will also have made the next great step in the user experience that we offer and it will bring new clients to our service.
When you’re not working, what are your hobbies and passions?
I like to watch football, and I get very passionate when the Croatian national team is playing. I enjoy skiing and hiking in the Swiss mountains and I also like to cook for my family and friends.
You have travelled all over the world, if you could be anywhere else right now, where would it be?
I would love to be in South Africa playing golf. I have been before for business but never for a vacation.
If you were shipwrecked on a desert island, what luxury items would you take with you?
I would take my Rolling Stones and U2 collection, and hopefully have enough electricity that I can run my iPhone.