The Presiding Board of the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) has appointed Dr. Martin Koers (47) as the VDA’s new Managing Director. He succeeds Klaus Bräunig, who will depart at the end of January 2019, having reached retirement age.
Dr. Koers will take up his new post on February 1, 2019.
In his new function, Koers will be responsible for Manufacturer Group III (suppliers, medium-sized businesses, aftermarket, development service providers and startups), which is the largest group of VDA members. He will also have responsibility for digitization, national economy and statistics, marketing, events and trade fairs including the International Motor Show (IAA) Cars in Frankfurt and the IAA Commercial Vehicles in Hannover.
VDA President Bernhard Mattes stated, “Dr. Koers has extensive experience of science, industry and associations. His expertise acquired in previous positions in communication and marketing, and his economic knowledge, will provide important impetus to our association and the IAA. I wish to thank Mr. Bräunig for his many successful years working at the VDA. He has been instrumental in characterizing our position and in the ongoing development of the IAA for many years and he has been of great service, especially to Manufacturer Group III.”
After studying business administration in Münster and Edinburgh, Martin Koers initially worked at the Institute of Marketing under Prof. Meffert. Following completion of his doctorate on “Managing brand portfolios” he taught branding, communication and promotion management as Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Illinois in the US. In 2002 he entered the industry by joining the Ford Motor Company, where he held posts including assistant to the Board, and Manager Product Marketing at Ford of Europe. Since November 2007, Dr. Koers has been Head of the VDA’s Economic and Climate Protection Department.
Furthermore, Jürgen Mindel (44), Head of the Department for Key Policies, Coordination and Strategic Planning, will become Deputy Managing Director as of February 1, 2019, and in this position he will report directly to the President. In addition to his previous duties, he will assume responsibility for human resources and finance.
Mattes said, “Until now Mr. Mindel has applied his strategic and analytical skills above all in the field of politics, but now he will use this competence in his expanded area of responsibility, thus strengthening the VDA.”
After studying political science at the Free University of Berlin, Mindel first worked as a scientific officer in the office of a German Member of Parliament. He joined the VDA in June 2007, initially as manager of the Office of the President, and moving to his current post in September 2017.
The VDA’s other Managing Directors remain Dr. Joachim Damasky (57) and Dr. Kurt-Christian Scheel (50).