Business students gathered Thursday in the Tanner Building to hear Eric M. Varvel, who was recognized by the Marriott School of Management as one of nine distinguished alumni for Homecoming week.
“I hold [BYU] in highest esteem and it’s an organization and institution that has helped me greatly in my career,” Varvel said.
Varvel is chief executive officer of the Global Investment Bank of Credit Suisse and a member of the executive board of Credit Suisse Group. Varvel is also a member of the board of directors of Qatar Exchange. He received a bachelor’s degree in finance from the Marriott School of Management.
“In my career, in my life what I have found as a key determinant to success is one’s ability to take on challenge and adapt to change,” Varvel said.
Varvel spoke on the emerging markets around the world, specifically about the changing profile of the global economy, Internet connectivity and the influence of social networks.
“Last year developing economies purchased or produced a majority of the world’s steel, mobile phones and concrete,” Varvel said.
Varvel looked at emerging market trends over the past 1,000 years. He told students they can gain valuable insights in today’s emerging markets through history.
“Study how these countries made the journey from developing to developed powers,” Varvel said.
Varvel stressed the importance of learning how the emerging markets of the past came to be today’s superpower markets. He said the strategies used by the United States to become a superpower could save it again in this weak economy. He suggested an emphasis needs to be placed on following the example of the world’s most vibrant economies, improve education and unleash the creative spirit of entrepreneurs, whether home-grown or abroad, among other things.
“While there are near-term and long-term challenges facing the U.S. economy, I am confident that we can overcome these challenges, just as we’ve done in the past,” Varvel said.