GERMANY. Leading travel retailer and distributor Gebr Heinemann has revealed a major organisational change that it says will “enable and strengthen its global agility and overall strategy”.

Max Heinemann, son of Co-owner Gunnar Heinemann, will take over the role as Chief Executive Officer of the group and will become Speaker of the Executive Board. Gunnar and Claus Heinemann continue to form the Advisory Board of the family business. It marks the transition to the fifth generation of family management at the Hamburg-based company.

Leadership team: (Left to right) Raoul Spanger, Gunnar Heinemann, Stephan Ernst, Max Heinemann, Claus Heinemann and Kay Spanger.

Max Heinemann will be responsible for Global HR, Corporate Development & Strategy and Corporate Affairs.

The Executive Board will be completed by the following:

*Raoul Spanger (named Chief Operations Officer), responsible for steering group sales, partner and customer portfolios and operations in all countries across all channels.

*Kay Spanger (named Chief Commercial Officer), responsible for providing market-specific product ranges and the management of commercial and logistical services across divisions.

*Stephan Ernst (Chief Financial Officer), who will oversee the group’s financial independence and integrity as well as system-based process support and solutions.

Into a new era for Gebr Heinemann as the fifth generation takes over; pictured is company HQ in Hamburg.

Max Heinemann said: “We are introducing the new structure and implementing structural changes without being forced to do so. We do not react to external changes – or external market drivers that force us to adapt.”

Claus Heinemann added: “What matters most is our direction in shaping the ‘next generation’ fit for the future, fit for shaping duty free and travel retail.”

Gunnar Heinemann added: “What makes us unique is that we change with a growth mindset and in full alignment with our 139-year history. This is a strong foundation for rethinking and changing. The driver for ‘change’ are we, ourselves. And we act out of strength.”

The structural changes and new organisation aims to build global growth, sensible synergies and sustainability, said the company. It is aided by the creation of one central sales area with the former distribution and retail arms all under the COO, with four major geographical divisions created.

These are each headed by a Vice President (VP): Florian Seidel (VP Nordics, Central & Western Europe); Richard Hoyer (VP EECA, Near East, Turkey & Africa); Marvin von Plato (VP/CEO Asia Pacific) and Nadine Heubel (VP/CEO The Americas).

The company added: “This new regional structure will enable the global thinking and direction of the company. Further to this, the company will see the introduction of the Vice President Purchasing under the CCO, which shall further strengthen and support the strategic management and activities across all categories globally.”