Career path from internship to consultant

On career opportunities and AI in banking

Zurich, Apr 2024

Already during his studies, Nico Fankhauser was able to actively help optimise the customer experience in the investment business using AI. We spoke to Nico about his master's thesis, the possibilities of AI in banking and his journey at Confinale from intern to consultant.


Nico, why don't you start by telling us briefly what your professional background is and what you studied?

I originally completed an apprenticeship as an electronics technician with a vocational baccalaureate. After an interim year, I completed both a Bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering and Management and a Master's degree in Data Science at the ZHAW.

How did you hear about Confinale? What convinced you to complete your internship with us?

In search of a suitable industry partner for my Master's thesis, I got in touch with various companies at the "Conecto" job fair, including Confinale. In an initial interview, I was able to express my interest in writing my Master's thesis at Confinale. Some time later, I had the opportunity to meet with Fabian, Rafael and Roman to discuss whether I could support the further development of the AI initiative of the aSpark product with my Master's thesis. A few months later, I was given the chance to write my Master's thesis as part of an internship at Confinale. The potential of the project, the topic and the expertise of the team convinced me to start my internship at Confinale.

Can you briefly summarise what you have been working on in the course of your master's thesis?

Confinale's product aSpark is an investment communication management solution for banks that enables them to personalise investment content and communicate it to their customers. My master's thesis focussed on the development of an AI solution that matches investment content with the individual preferences of existing customers and determines whether the customer would be a good fit. The principle of recommender systems, as already used by leading streaming providers, was applied.

What were your tasks during your internship at Confinale?

In the first phase of my internship, I analysed various approaches that could be considered as AI modules for aSpark. In addition to the technical requirements, the benefits for potential customers also played a central role. In the second project phase, the focus was on creating and testing the models and demonstrating the advantages and disadvantages.

What did you benefit most from at Confinale, both professionally and for your Master's degree?

Through my Master's thesis at Confinale, I was able to gain not only academic but also valuable professional experience that I would not have been able to gain at university. In addition to my supervisor at the university, I had very competent contacts at Confinale who contributed to the smooth running of my Master's thesis and I was able to establish many contacts with ETH graduates and various specialists.

After completing your Master's degree, you returned to Confinale to start as a Consultant. What convinced you to continue your professional career with us?

Of course, the 6-month internship gave me the opportunity to get to know both Confinale and my colleagues better. It gave me an insight into the variety of services and products that Confinale offers alongside aSpark. I was also able to take part in all Confinale events and get to know the corporate culture better. In addition to the exciting tasks at Confinale, it was above all the people and the atmosphere that convinced me that I was in the right place.


Interested in finding out what career opportunities await you at Confinale? You can find all vacancies at 


Nico Fankhauser, Consultant at Confinale

Nico Fankhauser, Consultant at Confinale

Contact person:


Contact now