POLITICS & INSTITUTIONS - ECONOMY

Paperjam Top 100

No. 1: Julie Becker, the effective influencer



Julie Becker succeeds Michèle Detaille as the most influential economic decision-maker.  Photo: Guy Wolff/Maison Moderne

Julie Becker succeeds Michèle Detaille as the most influential economic decision-maker.  Photo: Guy Wolff/Maison Moderne

Julie Becker is the top-ranked decision-maker of the 9th edition of the Paperjam Top 100, whose gala evening took place on Tuesday 13 December. Her skills, leadership and vision won her unanimous approval--along with her role in bringing the Luxembourg Stock Exchange to the world stage.

Tuesday’s gala evening at the Rockhal was organised by Maison Moderne, which publishes Paperjam and Delano.

Competent, efficient, persevering, perceptive, frighteningly intelligent… the praise rains down as soon as one mentions Julie BeckerJulie Becker, who became CEO of the Luxembourg Stock Exchange in April 2021. “Of all the players in the financial centre, she is certainly not the one who makes the most noise or makes the most fuss. What efficiency. Julie is a world-class CEO,” says a close friend.

Her teams confirm that she is driven by a “great work ethic”, which this “true leader” puts at the service of the group: “she believes in the strength of the team and in the effectiveness of collaboration”. But she is also described as having incredible determination in all her actions, a great spirit of innovation and a certain leadership. “She obviously likes innovative and disruptive ideas, which she measures with a good dose of pragmatism.” These qualities have helped her to give the Luxembourg Stock Exchange a completely different scope from what it had before.

At the origin of the creation of LGX in 2016

As a visionary, Becker was among the first to realise that sustainable finance would very quickly become a key issue as well as a vector of growth. In 2016, she was behind the creation--in the wake of the Paris climate agreement--of the Luxembourg Green Exchange (LGX), a platform dedicated to sustainable securities and issuers contributing to the financing of a low-carbon and more inclusive economy. This platform has earned the Luxembourg Stock Exchange worldwide recognition and has made it a key location for sustainable finance. The creation of the LGX Academy platform and the LGX DataHub database would enable LuxSE to win the United Nations Global Climate Action Prize in 2020.

Julie Becker has been the CEO of the Luxembourg Stock Exchange since April 2021. Photo: Guy Wolff/Maison Moderne

Julie Becker has been the CEO of the Luxembourg Stock Exchange since April 2021. Photo: Guy Wolff/Maison Moderne

Very involved and committed to gender finance, Julie Becker has also signed a memorandum of understanding with UN Women to advance gender finance. Just as LGX has given visibility to climate bonds, the aim is to mobilise enough capital to make a significant contribution to the UN’s fifth sustainable development goal, which is to “achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”.

When Julie says something, every word has value because she is so thoughtful.

A close friend

In personal terms, Julie Becker was also unanimously chosen. “I don’t know of anyone who wouldn’t be happy that she is number one in the Paperjam Top 100--or who would argue with that,” notes a financial sector expert. Despite an extremely busy schedule that requires her to travel the world for conferences, congresses and forums, Julie Becker still holds various mandates, notably within Inspiring More Sustainability (IMS) and the Luxembourg Institute of Directors.

Becker is in great demand for her opinions, analyses and advice. “And these are obviously becoming more and more important. When Julie says something, every word has value because she is so thoughtful. She is an influencer, yes, but always with the will to be effective.”

Although Julie Becker has a degree in international private law, she did not particularly plan a career in finance. She nevertheless joined BIL, where she held various positions from 2000 to 2013, with a brief interlude at the Luxembourg Central Bank. Tax, legal affairs, compliance, personal data protection, IT security… each area in which she worked allowed her, in her own words, to “broaden [her] field of competence and vision, to learn different professions and to [lead her] to the Luxembourg Stock Exchange”. She joined in July 2013, became a member of the executive committee in January 2015, vice-CEO in January 2020 and finally CEO in April 2021.

At the time, Frank Wagener, then Chairman of the Board, said: “Julie Becker has the skills, the innovative spirit and the leadership to lead the Luxembourg Stock Exchange successfully into a bright future. I am convinced that under her leadership it will prosper and further strengthen its position in the market and in the world.” The outcome has proved him right.

This article was written for the January 2023 edition of Paperjam magazine, published on 14 December 2022. It has been translated and edited for Delano.

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