Pioneers discover the unknown. Like where to invest next.
If Pictet sees further ahead today, that’s because it stands on the shoulders of its pioneering predecessors.
A pioneering approach
Pictet is a 217-year-old pioneer. From its earliest days, the partners have made ground-breaking investments on behalf of clients. In the mid-19th century they seized new opportunities in railways, shipping, glassworks and reinsurance as the Industrial Revolution spread from Britain across the European continent.
They also made innovative investments locally, founding a real estate company in the 1850s to exploit surplus land released by the demolition of Geneva’s defensive ramparts. Diversifying during the Second World War, Pictet took control of Zschokke, a major Swiss civil engineering company.
Guillaume Pictet’s trips to the New World at the turn of the 20th century spawned two of the earliest ‘thematic’ mutual funds, one to invest in Mexican companies, the other in US electric utilities (Amerosec) — emerging markets of the era. Both became important vehicles for Pictet clients. In 1990 Amerosec was transformed into Pictet’s first fund-of-hedge-funds.
Pictet’s international outposts embody the pioneering spirit. From the opening of London in 1980 onwards, each overseas base has been the fruit of strategic calculation. In 2020, Pictet opened its first bases in the world’s two biggest savings markets: the United States (New York) and China (Shanghai).