Management changes in Herford
About one and a half years after the takeover of Poggenpohl by the Chinese Jomoo Group, Managing Director Dirk Lange announces further organizational changes as part of the renewal course. These include a number of new appointments to senior positions due to the departure of long-serving employees. The vacancies and newly created positions will be filled entirely by employees from the company’s own, previously second-tier ranks.
In order to optimize the management of the growing customer business, the Customer Service department was expanded to include the Disposition and Export departments, which will be headed by Michael Schwarze as of May 1. At the same time, he replaces Philipp Schutte, who will leave the company at his own request in June of this year. Schwarze has been in charge of key account business in almost all countries since his apprenticeship at Poggenpohl in the early 2000s and has steadily developed his position to Export Manager and now Head of Customer Service. With him, Jan Brinkmann, who also looks back on an international career at Poggenpohl, will pursue the further expansion and improvement of processes within customer service. An additional management position will be filled in the Strategic Purchasing department in the foreseeable future.
Likewise, the strategic focus is on expanding the training area. Vincent Kuiper recently took charge of the newly established Poggenpohl Academy, which will henceforth develop interdisciplinary training programs for internal employees and the global dealer network. “Mr. Kuiper’s many years of frontline experience in the kitchen industry and his personal enthusiasm for the cause make him an ideal choice for the management position at the helm of the Academy,” says Dirk Lange, explaining the orientation. “Now more than ever, our growth trajectory requires all employees to understand their role as ambassadors and to be able to communicate Poggenpohl products and brand across cultures.”
After thirty years, Ralf Vahle, the previous Head of Finance, is also leaving the company this summer to end his professional career. His duties will be taken over by Zhen Huang, who has strengthened the finance department since last year. A native of Shanghai, Huang, who has lived in Germany for over 30 years and holds a doctorate in business administration from Bayreuth, brings further commercial expertise to the team.
The connection to the Chinese investor Jomoo, which is internationally active primarily in the contract sector, is embodied by company boss Dirk Lange himself through his many years of management experience with German and American premium and luxury manufacturers in the sanitary and interior design industry. He not only grew up in Asia, but has also held many positions in his professional career in China and the USA. Commenting on the future, he says: “We see unparalleled potential for Poggenpohl in the national and international marketplace, where our core competence – the development of luxurious kitchen architecture – is particularly well perceived. Our definition of the Poggenpohl brand must be experienced by the customer throughout, from the materiality, the customary Made in Germany quality of workmanship and our own design language to the customizability within kitchen planning and after-sales service – and this in our own stores and at our partners’. The Jomoo Group has great confidence in this successful course, which we intend to pursue with determination here at the site and with the entire team in the country organizations.”