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Prominent patron Branco Weiss dies

The entrepreneur, academic and patron Branco Weiss has died at the age of 81.

The high-tech businessman was in particular known for supporting the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETHZ) and encouraging young entrepreneurs and start-ups.

Weiss was born in Zagreb in present-day Croatia and fled as a young man to Switzerland to escape fascism.

He graduated from the ETHZ in 1951 with a M. Sc. in chemical engineering. Afterwards he established a number of national and international high-tech companies. From 1987 to 1994 he lectured on “Management of New Companies” and “Technological Strategies” at the ETHZ.

He was particularly known for the Branco Weiss Fellowship that provided junior researchers with a generous personal grant to give them the freedom to work on whatever topic they chose at a location of their choice for a maximum duration of five years.

Weiss was the founder and past president of the Swiss Venture Capital Association and a frequent lecturer on innovation and high-tech entrepreneurships.

He held several honorary PhD degrees from various universities.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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