SWIFT CEO to step down in June 2019

Search for a new chief executive begins after Gottfried Leibbrandt announces intentions to leave SWIFT next year.

By Jonathan Watkins

Long-serving SWIFT CEO, Gottfried Leibbrandt, is set to step down after seven years in the role.

SWIFT has subsequently announced it will be undertaking “a rigorous search process which will look both inside and outside the organisation” for his successor.

Leibbrandt joined SWIFT in 2005 to focus on the development of the SWIFT2010 strategy, where upon completion of the strategy, he was appointed head of standards.

In 2007, he was promoted to head of marketing, where he ran a global organisation responsible for the development and delivery of SWIFT’s strategic initiatives spanning products and services, standards, innovation, banking, corporate and securities market segments.

As head of marketing, Leibbrandt was also a key architect behind the creation of the co-operative’s SWIFT2015 strategy. He was appointed CEO in July 2012. 

“Gottfried’s tenure has been remarkable”, said SWIFT Chairman Yawar Shah. “During his time as CEO, the industry has faced unprecedented change and challenges, but under his leadership SWIFT has transformed itself to become a much stronger, more modern and agile organisation that is now driving change across the industry.”

Prior to joining SWIFT, Leibbrandt worked for McKinsey & Company for 18 years as a partner in the Amsterdam office and a co-leader of the European payments practice. He holds a Masters degree in Econometrics and Statistics from the Vrije Universteit Amsterdam and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. 

Some of the milestones during Leibbrandt’s time at the helm include the successful launch and take-up of the SWIFT gpi payments service, along with the expansion of the firm’s financial crime compliance portfolio and securities services and its successful move into real-time domestic payments.