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Claus Hugo Strandberg (Also known as "The Banker") is a Swedish banker and one of Agent 47's targets in the HITMAN™ mission A Gilded Cage.


Claus Strandberg, a Swedish citizen, is the former CEO of Morocco's largest private bank. Accused of billion-dollar investment fraud against the Moroccan people, he is currently under siege inside the Swedish Consulate in Marrakesh.

Strandberg grew up in an ordinary middle class family in Lund, Sweden. As a teenager he showed all the signs of a high functioning sociopath: charming, charismatic, extroverted, and above all, trust-invoking and inspiring, a born leader and a first-rate charlatan. Strandberg studied economics in Stockholm, but never graduated. Instead, he created an elaborate web of fake, stellar academic credentials including a business MBA and a PhD in macroeconomics from the non-existing "Kronstadt University."

He soon landed a prestigious job with a powerful UK investment bank. However, when his employers began questioning his credentials, Strandberg cunningly paid a Hollywood actress to impersonate an official of the fake university to "verify" his degrees.

Strandberg moved on to a lucrative job with a Chinese hedge fund where his bold and borderline illegal risk management strategies became the stuff of legend. He married and later divorced a Chinese woman, and when she died from cancer a decade later, Strandberg cynically conned his estranged teenage daughter out of her inheritance.

In 2005 he assumed the position as CEO of Morocco's largest private bank but could not resist making some illegal money on the side. He launched a complicated version of a classic Ponzi scheme and over the next 12 years embezzled billions of dollars from his criminal activities to the public.]]

Claus Strandberg comes across as jovial, energetic and charismatic. Like all corporate sociopaths, he is persuasive, appears trustworthy and disciplined, and has the ability to make you feel like the most important person in the world. However, he will cheerfully rob you blind, seeing human interaction mostly as a game of attrition, where winner takes all.
― Target Intel


  • Strandberg appears to be based on late American con-man Bernie Madoff, an investor known for operating the largest Ponzi scheme in History. Strandberg taking refuge inside a consulate appears to be similar to that of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who took refuge inside the Embassy of Ecuador in London in 2012 after an international arrest warrant was made against him by the Swedish government.
    • Another possible influence of his character could be Prince Carl Bernadotte, who was at the center of the Huseby scandal, whom of which fled to Spain and subsequently, the Swedish embassy in Rabat, Morocco.
  • Strandberg resembles Swedish politician Carl Bildt.
  • During the mission, Claus will receive a call from his daughter Eva, assuming she is calling him out of concern for his safety. Eva will then reveal that she is in the crowd carrying a sign saying "String him", causing Claus to attempt to defend conning her out of her inheritance.
  • Pam Kingsley stated that Claus was CEO of AMB, Morocco's largest private bank, for 7 years, although his in-game bio claims he was CEO for 12. She also mentions his arrest was 3 weeks before his death.
  • Claus' interview with Pam Kingsley canonically goes through, as two civilians discuss it in Club 27 and The Source.
  • Claus, Reza Zaydan, and Swedish consul Erik Olander all have mysterious paymasters known only as "Heralds", who have previous experience overthrowing governments and who disapproved of Claus' fraud. This is the first mention of Heralds in the trilogy, and they're later revealed to be messengers for Providence, liaising between the Constant and regular operatives.
  • Overheard staff dialogue indicates that Claus made a deliberate effort to greet all the members of the cleaning crew, explaining why he is an enforcer for the Consulate Janitor outfit. This may have been a security precaution on his part, anticipating an attack by a disguised assassin, or it may be a result of his superficially charming personality.
  • Claus currently has a massage scheduled with Konny Engstrom.
  • Claus has sent a consulate intern to retrieve his father's watch from a nearby apartment, although the intern is unable to find the address. If 47 disguises as the intern, Claus will chide him for failing to collect it.
  • Claus owns three stolen paintings by Rembrandt, Jackson Pollock and Peder Severin Krøyer. He will call an associate called Matthias at one point thanking him for retrieving the paintings, and allows him to keep the work of the latter.
  • If Claus is killed, the Swedish flag in front of the consulate will be lowered halfway down.
  • If held at gunpoint, Claus will either beg 47 not kill him, lament that his plan is "all going to hell", or try to pin his plan on Zaydan.