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Western Union CEO Hikmet Ersek Recognized for International Influence on Global Issues

(from left) Prof. Daron Acemoglu, Ph.D., Professor of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Dr. Wolfgang Schäuble, MdB, President of the German Bundestag, and: Hikmet Ersek, CEO of Western Union receive the Global Economy Prize award from Kiel Institute for the World Economy for their contributions in politics, economics and business, respectively. (Photo: Business Wire)


Awarded 2019 Global Economy Prize in Business for contributions addressing major global economic challenges

In a ceremony during the Kieler Woche festival, at Kiel City Hall, Hikmet Ersek, President and CEO of Western Union, a leader in cross-border, cross-currency payments, was awarded the Global Economy Prize in Business.

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Awarded by the Kiel Institute for the World Economy in partnership with the City of Kiel and Schleswig-Holstein Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IHK), the prize honors individuals who have proposed creative, pathbreaking initiatives to promote globalization and who dare envision a brighter future by addressing the global problems of our time. It carries no prize money, and is awarded annually to influential personalities in politics, business and science.

Speaking on the prospects for globalism in a time of trade wars and increased nationalism, Ersek offered a message of forceful assurance. “As responsible leaders, we must commit to shaping this new globalism into a truly equitable globalism, one dedicated to inclusion as a core value,” Mr. Ersek said.

During the ceremony, Dr. Wolfgang Schäuble, MdB, President of the German Bundestag, and Prof. Daron Acemoglu, Ph.D., Professor of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, also were honored for their contributions in politics and economics, respectively.

Born in Turkey, a citizen of Austria and resident of the United States, Mr. Ersek draws on his international background to speak out publicly for the rights of migrants and refugees worldwide. His unabashed stance as a voice for under-represented populations was cited by the Global Economy Prize jury in their announcement of his award.

“Hikmet Ersek is a passionate advocate of globalization and a socially responsible citizen of the world,” the jury wrote. “He is particularly successful in balancing the market needs to meet the goals of Western Union and its shareholders - while championing social responsibility across the global enterprise.”

In the past year, Mr. Ersek was honored for his meritorious services to the Republic of Austria with the Decoration of Honor, and received the WU Manager of the Year 2018 from his Alma Mater, Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien. In 2016, he also was awarded “Austrian of the Year” by Die Presse and currently serves as the Austrian Honorary Consul for Colorado, Wyoming and New Mexico.

Previous recipients of the Global Economy Prize business award include: Jeffrey Immelt, former CEO of General Electric; Bas van Abel, founder and CEO of Fairphone B.V.; and Italian fashion designer Brunello Cucinelli. Additional information about the Global Economy Prize and this year’s recipients can be found at: https://www.ifw-kiel.de/institute/events/prizes-and-awards/global-economy-prize/

About Western Union

The Western Union Company (WU) is a global leader in cross-border, cross-currency money movement. Our omnichannel platform connects the digital and physical worlds and makes it possible for consumers and businesses to send and receive money and make payments with speed, ease, and reliability. As of March 31, 2019, our network included over 550,000 retail agent locations offering Western Union, Vigo or Orlandi Valuta branded services in more than 200 countries and territories, with the capability to send money to billions of accounts. Additionally, westernunion.com, our fastest growing channel in 2018, is available in approximately 70 countries, plus additional territories, to move money around the world. With our global reach, Western Union moves money for better, connecting family, friends and businesses to enable financial inclusion and support economic growth. For more information, visit www.westernunion.com.

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