What do you call it when two perfectly suited partners come together? Syntax and Marco Odermatt. In sporting terms, Syntax is a premium partner.

Yvan Zimmermann, can you please describe your company to skier Marco Odermatt and – by extension via this website – to the public and his fans?

Yvan Zimmermann: Established in Thalwil, Switzerland in 1984, Syntax is a family business that specialises in a wide range of language services – including consultancy, editing, translation, copy-editing and interpreting – for a whole host of specialist fields.

How did Syntax get involved in sport?

Yvan Zimmermann: Sport is a passion shared by the company founders and owners, Peter Kuratli and myself. For over 30 years now, Peter Kuratli has promoted sport and scouted new talent – both with his company, Syntax, and in his private life. I myself actually played ice hockey in National League B. I owe a lot to sport; it's great training for life. And a brilliant way to spend your free time. We support both projects for promoting young talent and individual athletes too, and these measures encourage lots of young people to get involved in sports instead of just sitting in front of the computer or television, which is important for our society.

Syntax seems to be characterised by a widespread interest in sports and to be very much focussed on associations…

Yvan Zimmermann: We value reliable and sustainable partnerships. This is why we choose to back national associations – a strategy we've had positive experiences with. Alongside the Swiss "Sporthilfe" foundation, we are currently partners with Swiss Handball, Swiss Cycling, Swiss Ice Hockey, Swiss Sailing, PluSport and, as of this year, Swiss Ski. Right from the very beginning, we have primarily championed the promotion of new talent. First of all with football and then with tennis for a good 20 years. Throughout this time, we chose and supported strong personalities – and members of the national team – to act as ambassadors for our company. Ivo Heuberger was the very first ambassador; Marco Chiudinelli then followed for 14 years and then Michael Lammer for six years. Even after our ambassadors' careers came to an end, we all continued to enjoy a wonderful friendship combined with business activities. As Marco Chiudinelli's career was coming to an end, Peter Kuratli, his daughter Jeannine (who is also the co-owner and CFO of Syntax as well as a former top national tennis player) and I decided to focus on new sports from then onwards. As such, we chose winter sports – particularly skiing – and golf.

Marco Odermatt: I am so pleased that Peter Kuratli and Syntax have supported my friend Semyel Bissig for quite some time now. He is truly an amazing talent and will definitely make his mark in the World Cup either this year or next.

And let's not forget Marco Odermatt! What sparked your interest in becoming Marco Odermatt's premium partner?

Yvan Zimmermann: We wanted to strengthen our collaboration with Swiss Ski with an additional individual partnership. And of course, when looking at the new generation of athletes, Marco Odermatt's name comes up very quickly…

Winning five gold medals at the Junior World Championships is an impressive feat…

Yvan Zimmermann: We were delighted about that, of course, but his medals were not the deciding factor; winning medals at events is great but is far less important to us than general, long-term prospects for development. We have every confidence that Marco will continuously deliver fantastic performances at the very top of his field in a few years. But, above all, I think Marco is a popular figure – he's down to earth, cheerful, clever, modest – and as such makes an ideal ambassador for us. Even when earning lots of money, he's managed to keep his feet firmly on the ground.

And how about you, Marco – what are your thoughts on your gold medals?

Marco Odermatt: Of course, winning a medal is an emotional moment that we all work towards. There is hardly anything more wonderful than being given a gold medal at a world championship. It makes me proud, but only a little – more than anything, I am grateful. What's more, as a professional, my financial outlook has improved. I feel privileged that I have been able to form various partnerships with companies that will stand by me during the next stages of my journey.

And Syntax is one of these companies?

Marco Odermatt: Absolutely. Language is the foundation of human communication and Syntax helps its customers to find the right words – to translate their needs into words and sometimes into other languages too. Syntax is successful because it pays close attention to the details – as I do when I'm skiing. I feel very grateful for this partnership.

Syntax2018The Syntax management trio: Business, sport, passion. Yvan Zimmermann (CEO), Peter Kuratli (Chairman) and Jeannine Kuratli (CFO)



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