When my Swiss grandfather Josef Krucker had completed his apprenticeship as a butcher, he had the big dream to go to Africa and participate in safaris. But that was impossible in the difficult time between the two world wars. A friend advised him to seek his fortune in the new world. He fought his way to Holland during the first turmoil of war, where he joined the crew of a ship as a cook, making his way to Colombia. In the Colombian Amazon, he became infected with malaria so badly he nearly died. He then made his way back to the Pacific coast of Colombia and tried his luck as a gold digger. From there he made it to the center of Colombia, to Bogotá, where he met his future wife, my grandmother. Together they opened a butcher shop. At the time, sausages were unknown in Colombia, he was the first to produce and sell salami, sausages and the like in the country. His quality demands were very high and anything that was not quite to his liking, he put through the meat grinder and made small meat pies out of it; he invented the hamburger in Colombia. His butcher shop grew into a big factory, the “Frigorifico Suizo”, which soon became known throughout the country. My grandfather had two daughters, the younger one, Frida, was to become my mother. Since he had no son who would inherit his business, my grandfather sold the butchery to a large group: Sindicato Antioqueño. When my mother was three years old, on April 9, 1949, civil war broke out in Bogotá. My grandfather decided to send his two daughters to a boarding school in Switzerland. My mother was just 3 years old when she came to Switzerland. My grandfather visited his daughters from time to time in Switzerland and when he came to the Swiss province with his Colombian wife, an exotic beauty, the men stopped in the street because they had never seen such a beautiful woman. Conversely, my mother and her sister traveled regularly to Colombia during the holidays, but nevertheless, my mother decided to complete a business apprenticeship in Basel. But she had lost her heart to Colombia and decided to “go home” again. A short time later, she married a Colombian man her father was not thrilled with. I was born in Cali in 1972 and grew up in Bogotá, where I also attended the Swiss School. A short time later, on March 18, 1974, my grandfather passed away. I had never really gotten to know him, but I inherited from him the passion for hunting and fishing.
After school, it was clear to me that I wanted a job that had something to do with nature and fishing. My dream was to build ecological tourism in Colombia and to open a fishing lodge. So I decided to complete a hotel school, of course in Switzerland, where there were the best hotel schools. But first I had to attend the military training school in Switzerland. During my education, I quickly realized that I was very interested in the topic of ecology, but the practical training in a normal hotel business was not for me. In 1999, I decided to emigrate to Switzerland for good. I took a job at Credit Suisse in the back office and learned banking from the bottom up. In 2003, I was able to switch to Private Banking Latam as a junior. It was a great time and I learned a lot. In 2014, I met Daniella Franco Leupin, the daughter of Elizabeth, in Zurich. In the meantime, Private Banking changed dramatically with the automatic exchange of information. In 2018, I left CS to join Axxets. But much more important, Daniella became my wife and today we have a wonderful son together.