Switzerland’s 50-franc note wins the 2016 “Bank Note of the Year
Award” as voted by the membership of the International
Bank Note Society. Runners-up in tight voting were the Maldive Islands
1,000-rufiyaa note depicting a tortoise and whale shark, Argentina’s
500-peso note featuring a jaguar, and the Royal Bank of Scotland’s
polymer £5 note.
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Almost 120 new bank notes were released worldwide during 2016, and
over half were of sufficiently new design to be eligible for
nomination. The 19 finalists represented four continents (Europe,
Australia, South America and Asia), and included notes from two Middle
East countries and four island nations.
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The Switzerland 50-franc note is the country’s first new design in
20 years. Printed by Orell Fussli Security Printing Ltd., it is the
first in the Swiss National Bank’s new (ninth) bank note series and
focuses on wind and national experiences. Its substrate is a
three-layer composition called Durasafe, consisting of two layers of
cotton paper sandwiching a polymer core, and it incorporates a litany
of 15 of the latest technological security standards. The bright green
vertical note is slightly smaller in size than U.S. paper money and
depicts dandelion seeds, a paraglider aloft in the mountains, and a
playful human hand. Future denominations in the series will feature
the themes of time, light, water, matter, and language. The 50-franc
note is the third polymer note in a row to win the award.
The IBNS has more than 2,000 members worldwide. Its objectives are
to promote, stimulate and advance the study, collection and
dissemination of information related to paper money. Past “Bank Note
of the Year” winners include New Zealand (2015), Trinidad & Tobago
(2014), Kazakhstan (2013, 2012, 2011), Uganda (2010), Bermuda (2009),
Samoa (2008), Scotland (2007), Comoros (2006), Faeroe Islands (2005)
and Canada (2004).
Images of the winner and other nominated notes are on the IBNS
website. The IBNS is open to membership from interested persons in any
country. Details concerning all IBNS activities are available here.