Born-Globals connect Switzerland and Brazil

With the connections swissnex Brazil makes with Switzerland and Brazil, we have the pleasure to welcome Claudia from the School of Engineering and Management Vaud of Yverdon-les-Bains (HEIG-VD) part of the Universities of Applied Sciences from Western Switzerland. Claudia will be doing her research in our offices in Rio.

Could you briefly introduce yourself?

Regarding my background, I arrived in Switzerland twelve years ago from Portugal. At that time I started working in a small restaurant in Nyon in the French part of Switzerland. I quickly understood that Swiss academic program offers a wide range of opportunities for motivated and hard-working people and that I could benefit from the dual program “student-worker”. After two trainings between 2005 and 2007 (Office Worker and Accountant), I started evening courses to get the Federal Maturity in 2009. In 2012 after obtaining the Maturity degree, I entered the School of Engineering and Management Vaud, HEIG-VD (Haute Ecole d’Ingénierie et de Gestion du Canton de Vaud), while at the same time working as a bank employee for one of the largest Swiss banks.

What are your first impressions about Rio and swissnex Brazil?

As expected Rio is an amazing city with a lot of places to go out and its beaches that bring people together. I love to learn about other cultures and in Rio we can meet people from all around the world. My first impression of Rio is that it is a secure city with a wide cultural diversity.

swissnex Brazil is a young and dynamic team and I have been welcomed very well. I feel here like in a small family where Brazilian and Swiss people work together in a great knowledge-sharing environment.

Could you tell us more about your university and the project you are working on?

I am a fourth-year student in Business Administration at HEIG-VD. HEIG is a university of Engineering and Management and is the largest partner in the University of Applied Sciences (HES-SO) of Western Switzerland. HEIG offers full-time and part-time programs. Part-time program is one year longer (4 years) but allows students to acquire professional experience in parallel of the studies.

Currently, I am doing my Bachelor thesis focused on Swiss born-global firms internationally actives on the Brazilian market. The objective of this research is to analyze the firms’ strategies, identify the key success factors, and based on the results provide internationalization guidelines.

What are your expectations by staying at swissnex Brazil?

During the two months I will stay at swissnex Brazil, I expect to learn about the Brazilian markets specificities in terms of business. Indeed, as I love to learn about other countries, in the future I would like to work in supporting firms to internationalize their activities either to Brazil or to other countries. During these two months at swissnex I will be able to learn from the team international experience and how they deal with the specificities of the host country, such as administration, bureaucracy, and cultural differences – which is a plus for my professional future projects.

If someone wants to contact you, how should they do?

If someone wishes to contact me to learn more about myself or about my project, please send me an email to claudia.fernando@nullheig-vd.ch or by phone +41 79 308 42 59.