Executive Board

GEA is led by an Executive Board consisting of five team members. This committee is the executive body for the GEA Group and is responsible for the overall management of the global business, which includes operations on all continents. The Executive Board represents the Group internally and externally and oversees its administration. The members of the GEA Executive Board are appointed by the Supervisory Board for a term of three years.

Stefan Klebert

Stefan Klebert

Chief Executive Officer

Stefan Klebert took over as Chairman of the Executive Board on February 18, 2019, and has been a member since November 15, 2018.

In his capacity as a member of the Executive Board, he acts as Labor Director. In addition to Human Resources, he is in charge of the departments Communication, Marketing & Branding, Corporate Development, Internal Audit and Legal & Compliance. 

Previously, Stefan Klebert worked eight years for international industrial group Schuler AG as CEO. He began his career in marketing and sales in the automation technology division of Festo. In addition, he has held a number of management positions in various stock-listed companies, including managing director in the elevator industry at Schindler and divisional board member at Thyssenkrupp.

Stefan Klebert was born in Stuttgart, Germany, in June 1965. He is a trained mechanic, having studied mechanical engineering at Esslingen University of Applied Sciences, Germany, and holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Brunel University, London.

Steffen Bersch

Steffen Bersch

Member of the Executive Board

Steffen Bersch joined the Executive Board of GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft on January 1, 2016, and is in charge of the Equipment Business Area.

Holding various management positions at GEA, Steffen Bersch has been with the company since the year 2000. During his career he spent several years as Managing Director for GEA Middle East in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and also held the position of President of a business unit in the separator division. Until recently, he held the position of Executive Vice President of the Equipment Business Area.

Steffen Bersch was born in Wattenscheid, Germany, in June 1969. He is a food technologist graduate having specialized in biotechnology.

Niels Erik Olsen

Niels Erik Olsen

Member of the Executive Board

Niels Erik Olsen has been a member of the Executive Board of GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft since January 1, 2016, and is responsible for the Solutions Business Area.

Niels Erik Olsen, who until recently acted as Executive Vice President of the Solutions Business Area, joined the company in 1991. Since then, he has held various management positions within GEA, including in Singapore, China, the United States and Denmark, and was appointed to the Management Board of the former GEA Process Engineering segment in 2010. 

Niels Erik Olsen, a Danish national, was born in Guldborgsund, Denmark, in September 1966 and holds a Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Technical University of Denmark. 

Dr. Helmut Schmale - Finance

Dr. Helmut Schmale

Chief Financial Officer

Dr. Helmut Schmale is in charge of all finance functions and has been a member of the Executive Board of GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft since April 1, 2009. Furthermore, he is responsible for the IT department.

Before this, he held several management positions within GEA over a period of roughly 16 years. For instance, he served as CFO on the Board of the former Division Energy Technology for six years, followed by a five-year term as President (CEO) of the same division.

Dr. Helmut Schmale was born in Gelsenkirchen, Germany, in November 1956. He earned his degree in business administration and economics from the Ruhr University Bochum in 1982, where he received his Ph.D. in theoretical macroeconomics in 1986.

Dr. Helmut Schmale will leave the company as of May 17, 2019. Marcus A. Ketter will succeed as a Chief Financial Officer with effect from May 20, 2019.

Martine Snels

Martine Snels

Member of the Executive Board

Martine Snels joined the Executive Board of GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft on October 1, 2017, and is responsible for GEA’s regions and countries organization.

Belgian by nationality, Martine Snels has held a number of management positions in various multinational companies in the food and agricultural sectors. She brings more than 20 years of global business experience while being based in Belgium, Singapore and the Netherlands. Until recently, she served as Chief Operating Officer (COO) Ingredients and member of the Executive Board at Royal FrieslandCampina N.V. 

Martine Snels was born in Hoogstraten, Belgium, in February 1969. She was awarded a Master of Science degree in Agricultural Engineering and studied mathematics.

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