UBS presents the "Most Responsible Business Award"

Zurich Community Investment CH

 JA-YE Europe Trade Fair makes a guest appearance at Zurich’s central station

The JA-YE Europe Trade Fair took place from March 28 to 30 in Zurich. The best students from all over Europe come together at the annual trade fair to present their business ideas to a wide audience and to compete for countless awards. In its anniversary year, UBS handed out the "Most Responsible Business Award" as main partner.

Zurich central station’s imposing hall combines momentum and innovation and stands for both networking and a new beginning, which means it offered the ideal setting for the JA-YE Europe Trade Fair. Over 400 high school students, almost 100 teachers and internationally respected representatives from business, education and politics made use of this meeting point for a unique exchange of experiences. Around 90 mini-enterprises, all run by students, were able to benefit from the large-scale event and present and sell their innovative products to a wide audience.

Awards for the best mini-enterprises in Europe

In addition to the valuable experiences that the students can gain as entrepreneurs, competition is also at the heart of the trade fair. A professional jury assessed the trade fair stands, business ideas and sales activities of the mini-enterprises according to defined criteria. "For the jury, making a decision objectively and rationally was a huge challenge," explained Christian Leitz, Head of Corporate Responsibility Management. "It was impressive to see how extensively many candidates had already tackled complex subjects like social responsibility and sustainability and had made these the center of their business model," added juror Leitz. He was also inspired by the considerable enthusiasm, momentum and passion shown by the contenders when speaking up for their product and its sustainability aspects. In the end, mini-enterprise "S.T.E.F.I JA" managed to convince the jury with their photovoltaic concept. Cheers went up from the students from Italy when Christine Novakovic, Head of Corporate & Institutional Clients, handed them the "Most Responsible Business Award," which was sponsored by UBS for the first time.

A successful partnership for UBS and YES for over ten years

With the support of UBS, every year around 750 students at 25 high schools, commercial and vocational colleges in Switzerland have the opportunity to found startups, recognize business contexts and act enterprisingly. In addition to the financial commitment, UBS employees offer practical business training for adolescents (8th to 10th grade) as voluntary consultants, or convey the tasks and interrelations within a municipality to elementary school children. UBS provides its staff with two paid days off work for this commitment.

Aleksandra Weilenmann, Internal Communications Switzerland