Ballsy thinking on the Saxo Capital Markets Event: Is it the end of the Euro as we know it? 13Sept13 #TradingDebates
1. Lars Seier Christensen the Co-CEO of Saxo Bank made a good case for sensible economic policies at a national level. Now alot of people do that but few corporate Big Wigs that I come across do so since many have their heads up the collective corporatist backside of EU policymakers. It was a real surprise to see someone in his position make such sense on both the Euro and the EU. The lesson for other corporate bosses: Garner respect for making an argument that you truly believe in. It really does reduce the stress of the job!
2. Vaclav Kalus, former President of the Czech Republic. Gee, this guy was at the top table with the Euro-integrationists and yet he remained steadfastly a man who still promotes local decision making. Quite an achievement. A free copy of his book "Europe - The Shattering of Illusions" was on my seat at the event - great read!
3. Nigel Farage, leader UKIP, was humorous and intelligent. The UK Political Class underestimate this man at their peril.
4. Bloomberg European HQ. Wow! What a set up. Free bananas, apples, peaches and plums. And a welcoming internal digital infrastructure for guests!
The City needs more 'Contrarian' events like this.
Breaking - Friday 13Sept2013. Started the day with Danish Herring Roll Mops for breakfast as brain food for Saxo Capital Markets event today at the Bloomberg's European HQ. Just dawned on me that this event on whether the Euro is finished as a currency as we know it is taking place on Friday 13th! Is this an omen? See updated full list of 20 questions that I hope will be alluded to at today's event below (seems to be best viewed in Chrome for some reason). I will post an update on the event over the weekend.
Tuesday 2Sept13. I can't say that I have ever taken much notice of an outfit called Saxo Capital Markets before I received an invitation to their event at Bloomberg HQ a few weeks ago. From a marketing perspective this email was intriguing for several reasons:
First the topic was a straightforward question. Is this the end of the Euro as we know it? Right to the point. 'Saxo' sounds European. Surely a financial institution with Eurozone baggage couldn't bring this degree of clarity about the Euro political project that is, and has, consumed the attention of the EU political and business classes for the past six years. More investigation revealed that Saxo appear to be Danish in origin which explains a lot since I have always felt that these cheeky (Euro-less) chappies on the northern flank were kindred spirits to both me and the UK. My first job out of University involved teaching COBOL programming in Copenhagen (see The TOB "8. Eye on the Ball" here), I helped protect NATO's northern flank as an Army Officer and always thought that if war broke out I would die in a place in Denmark called Hillerød (See "Military Balls" here) and I was UK Marketing Director for one of Denmark's most innovative exports in the 1990s Time Manager International (TMI). See The TOB "7. Juggle Balls" here. So, who better to ask the question than the Danes. And who better to help answer it than the Brits!
Second, the event was FREE and the invitation seemed to have wide distribution. I know this since I received several copies from people in my network who forwarded it to me. As a result, The Young (or old?) Turk in the Saxo marketing team who thought up this event should already feel that their idea has paid off. I remember that getting sign off for FREE events when I was a rookie marketing executive was always an uphill struggle since my Bosses always demanded a breakdown of the ROI. Still, the nodes on my network who reacted to the Saxo email are evidence that they successfully targeted a receptive audience and getting the attention of busy successful people these days is not easy. (Hey, I'm blogging about it too so that gives a boost to the social media expectation of the project right?)
Third, they instigated a marketing campaign in the middle of August! What?! Shock, Horror, Probe! I thought all the people on the continent (OK, OK, the Danes excepted) went on holiday in August. But then as Bloomberg reported recently: "European leaders are saying goodbye to the extended vacations that were a continental norm until the global crisis broke out in high summer six years ago." So Saxo's August activity not only fits in with changing times but also highlights a cultural transformation that night help us answer their question. That's just plain Smart.
From an intellectual point of view however, this event got me thinking of the issues that you really need to address in order to answer Saxo's mighty Question. Under an unexpected English summer sun I managed to come up with 33 core, or critical, questions that I thought needed answers before anyone could form an authoritative view on whether the Euro project is about to undergo massive change. With some more thought (the sun lasted a lot longer that I imagined!) I got these issues down to a list of 20 which I have been tweeting in the run up to the Event. Here are the first ten...check out www.ThinkSURE.com for more.
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