Switzerland has a strong economy. The same applies to the largest companies in the country. They all have a very strong position within their industry. The capitalisation is huge but the number of employees in Switzerland is limited. This phenomenon is not new. The favourable tax climate in Switzerland has led many companies to choose to locate their operational headquarters in the Alpine country.
The “heavy weight” companies in Switzerland
In first place is the company Vitol from Geneva. The company has its roots in the Netherlands and operates in the oil and gas industry. The company has 2,800 employees and a turnover of CHF 280 billion a year.
In second place is the former number one company Glencore from Baar which is specialised in mining and raw materials. The company has 3,300 employees and a turnover of CHF 175 billion a year.
In third place is another heavyweight in trading commodities and raw materials. It is also a company with Dutch connections namely Trafigura which has overtaken Nestlé. Trafigura’s turnover is CHF 114 billion a year and employs 3,300 people.
In fourth, fifth, and sixths places you will find three Swiss tradition-companies. These are, Nestlé (turnover CHF 83 billion), Novartis (turnover CHF 52 billion) and Roche (turnover CHF 42 billion).
Number of employees worldwide
The largest international companies in Switzerland calculated in terms of number of employees worldwide are: Nestlé (283,000), ABB (120,000) and Novartis (96,000). In Sweden the largest employers are Volvo and Hennes & Mauritz.
Most employees in Switzerland
The three biggest workplaces in Switzerland are the commercial enterprises Migros and Coop with respectively 81,000 and 75,000 employees. On the third place is Die Post with 58,000.
There are 70,000 public (Canton and Bund) employees in Switzerland.