Clarifications on Financière Rembrandt
There are still some old articles on the Internet which mention Financière Rembrandt. Cyrille Vernes looks back on the actions which led the company to be penalised.
Cyrille Vernes, his journey
The Vernes, a story of banking
An expert in capital management, Cyrille Vernes has been director and former chairman of Vernes & Associés in Geneva since 1982. The direction he took was no coincidence, given that banking has been in his family’s blood since 1722!
The saga begins with Jean-Georges Vernes. Originally from the Ardeche, this Protestant ancestor sought refuge in Switzerland shortly after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes (1685), where he set himself up as negotiator-banker.
Even the illustrious Voltaire was one of his clients.
At the end of the 18th century, the family story continued in France, where Protestants were once again tolerated. In 1780, Jacques-Louis Vernes founded the Vernes et Cie Bank in Lyon. In 1818, his son Charles was deputy governor of the Bank of France and cosignatory to the creation of the Caisse d’Epargne de Paris building society and became vice-president in 1844.
During this period, he entrusted the running of the family bank to his brother Félix. In 1863, Adolphe, Félix’s son, helped create the Ottoman Bank. In 1912, his son Jules-Félix became chairman of the Bank of Syria, a subsidiary of the Ottoman Bank.
Finance or nothing
Following the tradition of a banking dynasty, in 1967 Cyrille Vernes went to the University of Nanterre where he qualified in private law, specialising in corporate law. He then went on to study accounting, but never completed his studies. He joined up in 1972.
Two years later, he joined Morgan Guaranty Trust, an American commercial bank in Paris. He worked there for a short time, as he was only interested in the financial markets.
In 1976, he joined Lazard Frères & Co, in New York, where he was a financial analyst. He then joined the Mergers and Acquisitions department, after having studied at the University of New York in corporate accounting management in the same period. In 1980, the family of Cyrille Vernes called him back to represent it at the Swiss bank Cantrade (subsidiary of UBS), where the family had interests. Wishing to give a European education to his children, he moved with his family to Geneva. Cyrille Vernes was also the first Vernes descendent to settle back in Switzerland.
Cyrille Vernes, entrepreneur
1982 was the year of change. Due to nationalisations in France, the Vernes family sold their share of the Cantrade bank.
Cyrille Vernes was no longer in charge. He was 34 years old. From there, he decided to go it alone and set up Vernes Gestion, a capital and asset management company, public and private. He specialised in the discretionary private banking. He also created Vernes & Associés, a holding company whose aim was to be stake holders in the financial services sector. His main activity was advisory, in the area of direct and market financial investments, for international clients, both private and public.
2002 was a particularly turbulent year. A subsidiary of Vernes & Associés, created in France in 1997, was investigated by the COB (Commission des Opérations de Bourse). Cyrille Vernes non-executive chairman learned about the malpractices of his Director General who would go on to be penalised. Faithful, his clients renewed their confidence and Cyrille Vernes was able to spare his Swiss company with the support of some members of his family. His son went on to join him later.
2013 was the year of diversification. Cyrille Vernes took a stake in a financial institution in the Bahamas. In addition to his responsibilities, Cyrille Vernes remained director of Vernes et Associés.
Objective: quality service and management
A moderate, rigorous and cautious optimist, Cyrille Vernes offered his clients total transparency. He guaranteed the sustainable yield of their portfolios by following a strict set of protocols. This allowed for the preservation of initial capital, especially with the Vega Protect solution. It provided perfect control of risk management. This methodology has a 3 decades’ long proven track record. His international experience and geopolitical knowledge enabled him to shape a long-term strategic vision.
A world of challenges
A convinced and confident European, Cyrille Vernes was no less curious about far-off shores. In 1972, he served in the navy as an intelligence and General-Staff officer. After two years of service, he joined the military reserves.
In 1994, keen on geostrategic issues, he studied at the National Defence College and obtained the rank of commander. The appeal of being a seaman was always so powerful, he joined the Yacht Club de France and took part in regattas at the helm of Ar Prim.
Another way for this man of progress to be in the midst of all the action.