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Workshop I will look at how German companies should position themselves for success in marketing and sales in the US, and how they should do so digitally. Following the question "How does marketing work in the US?," promising forms of distribution in the digital age as well as the use of social media (especially LinkedIn) will be discussed in particular. Other issues include: "Did the COVID-19 pandemic impact marketing and sales?" and "How do I position my brand in a market where my company is relatively unknown?" The workshop also addresses differences between building/recruiting a Sales & Marketing team in the US compared to Germany.

Our Speakers

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Only Hayat Netzer

Managing Director, ABRAMS Industries GmbH & Co. KG

Ms. Nur Hayat Nezir has been with the ABRAMS Group for 17 years. Born in the South of Germany with Turkish parents studied law at the University of Osnabrück. Starting in 2005 as a student at ABRAMS Industries GmbH & Co. KG, her talent for communication and sales was quickly recognized by the Founder and CEO , Dr. Jürgen Abrams, which is why she was given responsibility for building up the sales department. Ms. Nezir thus successfully introduced the PREMIUM STEEL division of the ABRAMS Group to the German market, later to the European market . As product manager, she expanded the portfolio to include PRE MIUM DRILL BITS , as well as PREMIUM ALUMINUM. Since 2015, as Managing Director, she has also been in charge of the Group's Business Intelligence division - ABRAMS World Trade Wiki - with which companies generate knowledge from the award - winning database, enabling them to see with one click who supplies what to whom worldwide and at what price. In 2021, the sales talent spent 3 months building ABRAMS Industries Inc.'s on - site sales force in Bolingbrook, Chicago, Illinois. The multi-talented is now responsible for 150 employees in sales, inside sales, IT, warehouse and manufacturing.


Franz Josef Schuermann

Chairman, Itemis AG

Franz - Josef Schuermann joined itemis AG in 2021 as a member of the board and he is chairman of the board at itemis Inc. Before joining itemis AG, he was a group board member at the The Adecco Group (CEO - DACH and Group Chief Sales & Innovation Officer) and lead Infosys Ltd. in Germany for five years as CEO. As Global Partner at Accenture, he supported Fortune 100 and DAX 30 companies in their largest transformation initiatives. Throughout his career, he has been involved in more than ten innovative technology-based start-ups. Franz - Josef Schuermann has over 20 years of experience in the technology space as well as CEO and Board Member. He has been a frequent speaker at globally leading universities and events.

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Matthew Koehler

Founder & CEO, KOEHLER Transatlantic GmbH

As a Business Developer and Coach, Matthias Koehler accompanies German speaking companies and people on their way to success on the US market. Prior to establishing his own business Matthias worked for several German - American companies in different leadership and management roles for over 20 years. For the German WAGNER Group, Matthias Koehler works in finance & controlling as well as a regional and national sales manage. After moving to the US, he led WAGNER Systems Inc. as their General Manager and President. After restructuring the organization, Matthias led the organization back on a profitable growth path. This also included the successful acquisition and integration of a US company before he moved back to Germany. Back in Germany Matthias took over the role as Head of International Sales for the ZARGES Group and as President of ZARGES Inc. USA. After ZARGES was acquired by the US market leader WernerCo, Matthias took over the executive management role as Managing Director EMEA International for WernerCo / ZARGES.

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Thorsten Finke


Thorsten Finke is co-founder of IDENTYTEC GmbH & Co KG and has been working here since 2005. He has mainly taken over the management of sales and coordination in the technical area. The expansion of sales in Germany, Europe and the USA is at the forefront. In 2019, the subsidiary in the USA was founded in order to take the next steps in terms of sales in the USA, Mexico and Canada. Currently, an employee in the USA is hired for sales in order to advance existing customers and new acquisitions. Thorsten Finke has an electrical engineering education and is a state-certified technician specializing in communications engineering. Since 1995 he has been working in the technical field of Auto-ID products. Since 2000, he has focused on commercial activities in the same segment.


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Mark Tomkins

President & CEO, German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest, Inc. 

Mark Tomkins joined the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest in March 2006. Prior to this, Mr. Tomkins spent over 10 years in business development consulting, working with businesses throughout the world in developing strategic alliances and long-term co-operations. Mr. Tomkins began his professional career in the automotive and IT industry in Germany and the US  He served on the board of the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest, the Honorary Board of the German International School Chicago, and the Board of Advisors for AIESEC at Northwestern University.  Mr. Tomkins also serves on the National Academies of Sciences Committee on the Supply Chain for Middle-Skill Jobs. Mr. Tomkins graduated from Northwestern University in Evanston, IL with a BA in Applied Mathematics (Honors Program), Economics and German.

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