Christoph Franz has been a member of Roche Board of Directors since 2011 and Chairman since 2014. A trained industrial engineer, Franz forged a career as CEO of the airlines Swiss and Lufthansa. He is regarded as an unconventional thinker who is not afraid to ask questions that (as he himself says) could turn out to be stupid: “I want to break old patterns of thinking that prevent people from exploring new avenues.”
Our Chairman in brief
Nationality German and Swiss
Year of birth 1960
Education Graduate in Industrial Engineering (Dipl. Wirtsch.-Ing.), Doctorate in Economics and Social Sciences (Dr. rer. pol.)
Family status Married, 5 children
Leisure time Being a family man; travelling, swimming, hiking, skiing, the arts (opera)
Read our Chairman's full CV
Chairman soundbites on selected topics
Questions and answers
We asked Christoph Franz what he thinks about the following topics:
"The values that my wife and I are passing on to our five children can be summed up with the phrase ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you’. This includes respecting your fellow humans, fairness and a sense of shared responsibility for society."
His professional ambition:
"My professional ambition has never been focused on how many stars there are on my shoulder. The enjoyment of taking on exciting tasks and responsibilities has always been my main priority."
"I am a firm believer in the concept of role models as a leadership tool. Employees pay close attention to their managers’ behaviour. They have a feel for whether or not the managers practise what they preach."
Giving people space:
"Innovation means exploring new, unknown avenues. You can only make new discoveries if you do things everyone thinks are impossible. We need to create space for people who are a bit ‘crazy’, as it were!"
His management style:
"My management style is very dialogue-oriented. I enjoy working with people and sharing ideas as a way of discovering different perspectives on a topic."
Access to medical care:
"Even the most ground-breaking innovation is useless if it never reaches the patients. We need to ensure that everyone receives our diagnostic solutions and medicines – regardless of where they were born or live and their purchasing power."
"I am very optimistic about the future. We have an outstanding pipeline and – thanks to the interplay of pharma and diagnostics – very good opportunities to advance personalised healthcare."