Spread Group’s Guide to Gender-Inclusive Language
Published 12. May 2021 in Company Insights
The Head of Copywriting and Translation at Spread Group, Felicitas Kermarrec has just published her Guide to Gender-Inclusive English, German and French “Connecting with Language” to mark European Diversity Month with a handy directive. Be sure to read her free e-paper.
Some may perceive gender-sensitive language as cumbersome or even aggravating, yet it is easy to adopt a positive approach when bearing a few ruses in mind. Language is a symbolic means of referring to objects and ideas, and as such of vital importance for anyone – and also commercial companies – to assume responsibility when considering the choice of words. Of course, the same is true for imagery. At Spread Group, Felicitas Kermarrec has attended to the matter as she spearheaded an initiative to define a company-wide standard of gender-appropriate language. In doing so, she put her team of 30 permanently appointed and freelance members on course to writing in a more inclusive way when creating content across the platform’s 13 languages of Spread Group’s various brands.
Looking back on some 15 years of professional experience in localization, translation, and copywriting, Felicitas is well acquainted with potential pitfalls of gender-inclusive language. “The shift towards a more inclusive application of language has been felt in almost all European countries in recent years. However, our quest for more inclusivity is still in its infant stage. This is why a guideline with rules and helpful advice will hopefully go a long way to get a well-needed change off the ground. Thanks to the guide that my team has developed, we can now quickly and easily achieve our goal of writing gender-appropriate texts that sound both natural and articulate. A mix of clear instructions and creative solutions are instrumental here.”
Visible gender-equality in language – a new business standard
The omens are favorable that gender-inclusive languages will keep gaining momentum in corporate language and communication. According to a recent survey by the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences, 10 of a total of 30 DAX-listed companies already use inclusive language. These companies serve as important role models when trailblazing the way for small and medium-sized companies. The most frequently cited motivation for their decision comprises of the fact that gender-inclusive language corresponds to their relationship of non-discriminatory interaction with each other.
Felicitas Kermarrec has designed her guide for gender-inclusive English, German and French as a compact manual. The English-language e-paper includes the most important tips and ruses that have already proven to work very well in practice for Spread Group’s copywriters and translators.
Spread Group appoints Dr. Julian de Grahl as CEO of the company. The new CEO brings with him almost 20 years of experience in the internet industry and listed companies. He has been Managing Director at CTS EVENTIM since 2012, and was previously Managing Director at amiando (now XING Events) and Vice President Vertical Business at XING AG (now New Work SE). Dr. Julian de Grahl studied law and economics (business administration) in Hamburg and Cape Town and earned his doctorate at the University of Hamburg.
“Under Philip Rooke’s leadership, Spread Group has developed from a start-up to a highly profitable industry leader. I have great respect for this achievement. I am very excited to continue this growth trajectory together with a sensational team and to set new stimuli,” says the new Spread Group CEO Dr. Julian de Grahl.
CSR @ Spread Group – 5 Questions for Dave Gorman
Published 06. Apr 2021 in Company Insights Responsibility
Corporate Social Responsibility is not just trendy topic, but an attitude. The goal is to create a good life for everyone. In our new interview series, we ask our staff how they feel about one of the most important issues in our industry: sustainability. And how committed are they themselves?
We’re kicking off our interview series with Dave Gorman, Director of Customer Experience and CSR Project Officer at Spread Group. Dave originally hails from Boston, where he started his university studies in Neuroscience before completing his degree in Creative Writing. He has lived in Leipzig for over 15 years now, and previously worked as a copywriter and English Teacher before coming to Spreadshirt as a writer. Now he is responsible for the teams that handle User Research & Experience, Copywriting & Translation, Photography, and central Design functions. It was his father who used to be quite ahead of the curve when it came to recycling and conscious shopping. This is how Dave developed a keen interest in environmental issues from an early age, not least because his travels to parts of the world – where the effects of unsustainable practices are quite visible – influenced his ecological awareness.
Spread Group: How do we define sustainability at Spread Group?
Dave Gorman: We see sustainability made up of three important pillars: environment, economy, society. While the environment is a huge factor on our minds and on our customers’ minds – the economic and societal sides of sustainability are a part of our responsibility that we feel we also need to contribute to. Under the environmental umbrella, we see our print-on-demand model as the basis for sustainable commerce. It goes along with where and how our products are sourced, how much of our product range is made up of eco-friendly products, the quality and longevity of our products, our use of packaging, and a number of other green initiatives. When it comes to the society, we look at both our responsibility to our employees across the planet and the responsibility for the kind of content that can be sold on our platform. And finally, we’re excited about our economic role of supporting small to medium sized businesses and independent designers. We empower them with a place to earn money selling online, as well as the other philanthropic campaigns to provide support to those in need.
Spread Group: What does sustainability mean to Spread Group?
Dave Gorman: Sustainability has been an important part of Spread Group from the very beginning. The core of our business model relies on the print-on-demand model. Compared to typical clothing companies, we only print and sell what is purchased, which prevents unsold overstock and reduces waste. While we’re proud of those roots, we’ve seen how important this topic is for our customers, our employees, and the environment itself. That’s why we look forward to doing even more to meet those challenges.
Spread Group: How do we promote sustainability at Spread Group?
Dave Gorman: We formed a task force, a cross-company team whose job it is to uncover more about the sustainable efforts we’re already making. And we also discover what else we can do, and then drive those new sustainability initiatives. While we’re proud of the things we’re already doing, we’re really excited to tackle problems around our carbon footprint, sourcing & supply chain, eco-friendly product range, packaging, and more.
Spread Group: What are the biggest challenges for an e-commerce company in the textile industry in terms of sustainability? How do we meet these challenges?
Dave Gorman: There are some very really tough challenges for e-commerce companies in the textile industry. It starts with where and how cotton is grown (or synthetic fibers are sourced), all the way to how customers use, reuse, and recycle these products. Our print-on-demand approach solves one of the biggest issues of overproduction and waste issues that fast fashion companies face. However, the questions of a) where and how our suppliers source their materials and b) what kind of packaging involved in shipping our products to customers remain the challenges we are more than willing to accept.
Spread Group: What is your personal advice on how to be more sustainable in your everyday life?
Dave Gorman: As an individual you can live more sustainably, because you have the choice to reduce, reuse, and recycle. You can ask yourself, do I really need something? Where is it produced? And can the item it replaces be reused or recycled? There’s this great podcast series by Jane Goodalls Hopecast that I find very inspirational. She’s a scientist, activist, and amazing storyteller who takes a look at the adversities that the planet and environment face. What’s great about it is being given a view through the optimistic lens of how human spirit and hope can still make a difference. And it feels like her many experiences have made a difference already. I highly recommend it!
Spread Group: Thank you for the interview, Dave!
Der Bereich des Feel-Good-Managements erlebt vor dem Hintergrund von mobilem Arbeiten, virtuellen Teammeetings und Home-Schooling derzeit einen neuen Aufschwung. Die Spread Group stellt sich diesen Herausforderungen und begrüßt die neue Feel Good Managerin Nelly Flieger.
Mit Nelly Flieger gewinnt die Spread Group eine erfahrene und aufgeschlossene Gesundheitstrainerin zur Erweiterung der unternehmensinternen Feel-Good-Aktivitäten. Die gebürtige Leipzigerin ist seit 2016 in ihrer Heimat als Yogatrainerin sowie als Fitness- und Ayurveda-Lifestyle-Coach selbstständig. Seither verfolgt sie die Vision, Menschen mit ihrer Arbeit gesünder und glücklicher zu machen. In ihrer Tätigkeit als neue Feel Good Managerin bei der Spread Group fokussiert sie einen gesundheitsbewussten und ganzheitlichen Ansatz und lässt diesen in die Angebote einfließen.
Ursprünglich kommt die 34-Jährige aus der Branche der Verpackungs- und Drucktechnik. Nebenher widmet sich die studierte Verpackungsingenieurin bereits seit ihrer Jugend dem Sport- und Gesundheitsbereich und hat u. a. als Fitnesstrainerin im Ausland gearbeitet. Das Feel-Good-Angebot der Spread Group, das sich seit 2011 auf das Wohlbefinden, die Kultur und das Gemeinschaftsgefühl der über 400 Kolleg*innen am Standort in Leipzig konzentriert, hat Nelly Flieger als Außenstehende stets sehr interessiert verfolgt. In ihrer Rolle als Feel Good Managerin möchte sie ihr Wissen aus der Industrie- und der Gesundheitswelt vereinen und neue Akzente der Achtsamkeit und Bewegung setzen.
„Ich sehe es als Chance und Herausforderung zugleich, in meiner neuen Position remote zu starten und ausgewählte Feel-Good-Aktivitäten in dieser bewegten Zeit vorerst ins Virtuelle zu überführen. Ich setze mich aktuell intensiv mit der Frage auseinander, wie man die Feel-Good-Kultur auch aus der Ferne aufrechterhalten und weiter aufleben lassen kann. Dafür muss ich zu Beginn sehr offen sein und viel zuhören, um ein Angebot schaffen zu können, was alle Spreadster in der derzeitigen Situation glücklicher, zufriedener macht und das Wir-Gefühl bestärkt. Nur so können wir im Umkehrschluss ausgeglichener und auch leistungsfähiger sein“, sagt Nelly Flieger.
Die ersten Aktionen hat die Leipzigerin bereits ins Leben gerufen, wie die virtuell stattfindenden Yoga-, Stretching- als auch bewussten Atempausen, die unter der Woche fast täglich angeboten werden. Im neu eröffneten internen Feel-Good-Chat werden die Themen Achtsamkeit und Bewegung im Alltag besprochen, um auch dem ständigen Sitzen im Home-Office entgegenzusteuern. Angesichts der aktuellen Herausforderungen rund um Home-Schooling und Kinderbetreuung von Zuhause hat Nelly Flieger auch ein Angebot für Mitarbeitende mit Kindern geschaffen. Zusammen mit der IT-Abteilung wurden Notebooks als Leihgabe zur Verfügung gestellt, interne Kreative der Spread Group haben ein Malbuch angefertigt und einmal pro Woche lädt die Feel Good Managerin zur virtuellen Kinderdisco und zum Kinderyoga ein.
„Wir feiern dieses Jahr unser 10-jähriges Feel-Good-Jubiläum bei der Spread Group. Nelly stellt mit ihrer vielseitigen Expertise eine perfekte Ergänzung für unsere bisherige Arbeit dar. Gemeinsam werden wir die Feel-Good-Aktivitäten nun auch im virtuellen Bereich auf ein neues Level heben, denn das geistige und körperliche Wohlbefinden sowie das Gemeinschaftsgefühl im Team sind die Basis unserer Unternehmenskultur“, sagt Theresa Kretzschmar, Personalchefin der Spread Group.
Mehr zur neuen Feel Good Managerin Nelly Flieger, zu ihrer Person und ihrer Arbeit bei der Spread Group, gibt es im Interview zu lesen.
Bildmaterial zum Download
(Copyright Spread Group)
Nelly Flieger expands the Feel-Good area at Spread Group to get staff moving in home office. Find out how the passionate yoga teacher used to print T-shirts in the university basement, and what mindfulness and health means in her daily (work) life.
Hi Nelly, we just have to ask the inevitable question – who are you?
Sure! I’m Nelly Flieger and 34 years old. Some may have heard that I’m the new Feel-Good Manager here at Spread Group. I am a true Leipziger, as I have spent most of my life in the south of Leipzig. I studied in Stuttgart, but I would call Hamburg my second home, as I lived and worked there for a good while.
Feel Good Manager sounds like an exciting position. Did you study to get on this career path?
Actually, I studied packaging technology in conjunction with printing technology. Then I worked in this field for several years, both for an agency and in a corporate group. Fun fact – during my studies, I already printed T-shirts myself in the university basement, trying out simple designs. Sounds like the right fit for Spread Group!
Absolutely! And we’ve heard that next to being a real yoga whizz-kid, you’re also a fitness coach and Ayurveda lifestyle coach. How did you get there?
When I was younger, I worked as a trainer for children and show dance, mainly in carnival clubs. I completed my classical aerobics training at an early age and worked in the gym. Sports and the joy of movement have always been more than a hobby for me. That’s why I went abroad after graduating to work in the fitness area of a hotel. I spent a year each in Spain and Turkey, and I’ve been a licensed Yoga and Pilates teacher since 2011. About 5 years ago, I started my own business to pursue this more, and I also became a trained Ayurveda Lifestyle Coach. Ayurveda is more than wellness or spicy Indian food, it’s also a holistic and health-conscious approach to life. And that’s what I want to incorporate into my role as Feel-Good Manager at Spread Group.
That’s quite a career! What makes your new role so exciting?
I had been flirting with Spread Group for quite a while, and I followed the development of the Feel-Good area. The family-like corporate culture, the colorful teams, the fun at work – that’s what stands out about Spread Group from the outside. I was convinced that as a Feel-Good Manager I would be able to combine my knowledge from the industry as well as the health world to set a new marker. Since opening my yoga studio, I’ve been pursuing the vision of caring for people to be healthier and happier. This vision continues to accompany me in my new role as a Feel-Good Manager.
Have your first weeks as a Feel-Good Manager met your expectations? What’s going on right now?
I received a very warm welcome, but my start was very different from what I had initially expected. Due to the current pandemic, my professional onboarding and getting to know my colleagues is taking place through my home office. But I see it as both an opportunity and a challenge to start remotely in my new position. During this turbulent time, the challenge is to transfer a selection of Feel-Good activities to the virtual world for the time being. In the first few weeks, I was able to get to know many of my colleagues online, and I got an impression of the current mood. I was happy to see that there is already a good Feel-Good vibe in the company. Now I’m working hard on maintaining the Feel-Good culture remotely. I need to listen a lot to come up with the right offers to keep our Spreadsters happy, while also strengthening the community spirit. This is the only way we can stay balanced and efficient.
Do you already have ideas of how to galvanize the community spirit?
Not only ideas! Along with the Human Resources team, I’ve launched the first activities and offers. These include virtual yoga, stretching, and conscious breathing breaks that take place almost every day during the week. I send reminders of these Feel-Good breaks to everyone through the company chat. But the chat is also about mindfulness and movement in everyday life. The idea is to counteract the strain that comes with sitting in home office, and to talk about the feelings around the lockdown. Then we have a virtual lunch lottery, where colleagues can get to know each other across teams and exchange ideas. Given the current challenges around home schooling and childcare from home, an offer for employees with children was also created. Our IT department helped provide notebooks for them. Then we created a coloring book for kids to provide a little insight into their parents’ working lives. Those of the children who feel like moving can take part in the weekly virtual kids’ disco and kids’ yoga with dolls and cuddly toys. And there will be more to come, stay tuned!
Speaking of kids, how would you explain to children what a Feel-Good Manager is?
That’s a nice question. I like to compare the role of a Feel-Good Manager to that of a loving mother of an extended family, keeping a watchful eye to make sure everyone’s doing well. She motivates and helps everyone to realize their potential, thereby knitting ties between all the members of the family aka the company. I think this metaphor explains it very nicely.
An apt comparison indeed! What makes a well-timed Feel-Good Management for you? What qualities should a Feel-Good Manager have?
Feel-Good Management is incredibly versatile. There are so many possibilities. But the important thing is that what’s on offer fits the needs of your staff, and that the focus is on the well-being of your colleagues – both physically and emotionally. Great Feel-Good Management has a strong sense of community, and it is a highly approachable part of corporate culture. At Spread Group, I immediately found out that a sound structure had been put in place very well.
What’s more, a Feel-Good Manager’s job is a very active and fast-moving one, and you should be very open-minded, flexible, and be a very good listener. Organizational skills are also vital. Apart from that, I think the following qualities are important: Communication, empathy, and being actively motivating.
How do you see the future of Feel-Good Management in companies and in society?
I am convinced that this area of business will become increasingly important, and also more in demand. Due to the unstoppable digitalization and the noticeable increase in technology, the needs of people must take center stage much more. After many decades of out-and-out technological progress, we’ve now entered a period of the “next new normal” due to the pandemic. Now, Feel-Good Management is an important tool for companies to get ahead of the competition in the labor market. The portfolio of offers in the area of Feel-Good will develop into a decisive criterion for generations to come. Feel-Good Management will become a corporate staple.
Another personal question! What do you do when you’re not doing gymnastics on the yoga mat?
I love being outside! That’s why I love Leipzig and its surroundings so much. The nature, the lake landscape! In fact, even before the Corona lockdown, I enjoyed going for walks and hikes. That’s not a Corona hobby (laughs)! Otherwise, I sing in the choir, currently also virtually, and brushed up my accordion and ukulele skills during the lockdown situation. And who knows, maybe Spread Group will soon be able to enjoy musical Feel-Good activities. We will see! Oh yeah, and I’m passionate about water sports. SUP yoga in the summer, surfing or sailing. And I’m still looking for a sailing partner!
Final question: Which slogan would you print on a T-shirt right away?
I don’t need to think long and hard. “Feeling tired? Breathe, enjoy, and smile!” That’s what my Spread Group colleagues will remember, even in my courses. You can get something good out of any situation! Don’t forget to breathe, and don’t let the stress get on top of you!
Thanks for the interview and the insight into your work, Nelly!
Julian de Grahl named new Spread Group CEO
Published 21. Dec 2020 in Company Insights
Philip Rooke will pass the baton on to Julian de Grahl April 1st, 2021.
Dr. Julian de Grahl (47) will become the new CEO of Spread Group, an enterprise group of leading digital brands empowering self expression with print-on-demand products. As of April 1st, 2021, de Grahl will take over from Philip Rooke (52), who decided a few months ago to pursue a new career opportunity after 10 years as CEO.
Dr. Julian de Grahl has more than 18 years’ e-commerce experience, of those more than 13 years in listed companies and high-growth, high-margin environments. He has been Managing Director at CTS EVENTIM since 2012 and responsible for several business units addressing the sports, cultural, and club/festival markets with specialized software, e-commerce shops, and merchandising solutions. In this function he had a strong focus on agile product development, internationalization, and B2B-sales. Prior to this, Dr. Julian de Grahl was Managing Director at amiando (now XING Events) and Vice President Vertical Business at XING AG (now New Work SE). Dr. Julian de Grahl studied law and economics (BWL), holds a Ph.D. from the University of Hamburg, a master’s degree from the University of Cape Town and two state exams from the City of Hamburg.
“Spread Group’s teams have done a tremendous job building an international, sustainable, and profitable business. With its variety of digital products (Spreadshop, Spreadshirt Marketplaces, Spreadshirt Create-Your-Own, TeamShirts, SPOD), its loyal partner community, and its production and fulfillment facilities, Spread Group is extremely well-positioned to further expand into social commerce and B2B. I had excellent talks with the board and can’t wait to take over in April,” says Dr. Julian de Grahl, CEO of Spread Group as of April 1st, 2021.
Under Philip Rooke’s leadership, Spread Group developed from a start-up to the only true international and highly-profitable player in the PoD market. Among Philip Rooke’s major achievements are instilling highly effective leadership, establishing excellent teams, and building successful business models. Since he was appointed CEO in 2011, Spread Group increased its revenue by 600 percent, expanded beyond its flagship brand Spreadshirt to include several newly developed brands, and is now active in 18 markets with over 1,000 employees.
“Spread Group is in a great place – we are a strong, sustainable, and profitable business. It has been an incredible honor to work with such talented people and to have achieved so much together. As I move on, the thing I’m most proud of is the team at Spread Group and a huge thank you goes out to them. Julian will be a great addition to the team and his vast experience, fresh eyes, and multifaceted approach will take the Group to the next level,” comments Philip Rooke, CEO of Spread Group.
“I sincerely thank Philip for his outstanding performance and achievements in over a decade at Spread Group. His time as CEO of Spread Group leaves us with a great foundation and an exceptional team. In Julian, we have found an excellent successor and we look forward to expanding the culture, developing new innovative business areas, and making the company ready for the capital market!” says Lukasz Gadowski, Spreadshirt’s founder and Chairman of the Spread Group Supervisory Board.
Dennis Doerfl takes over leadership of Spreadshop
Published 15. Dec 2020 in Company Insights
Spread Group warmly welcomes Dennis Doerfl, an experienced manager with a digital mindset and international connections, as the new Director of our B2B brand Spreadshop.
Dennis brings along his remarkable experience as Sales Operations Director EMEA and Operations Director EMEA at Groupon where he advanced the outsourcing of business processes to 23 countries worldwide. Since 2016, he’s been a Co-Founder and board member of Fourstarzz Media, an American software-as-service company specialized in social-media and influencer marketing.
Dennis’ cosmopolitan mindset compelled him to get a degree in business administration with a focus on marketing, taxation and auditing. He also worked as a business consultant and strategic advisor for Accenture on a global scale. “In my new position as Director of Spreadshop, I would like to continue to grow and foster the B2B business in Europe and North America. Of particular importance is increasing Shop Owner satisfaction, developing an innovative e-commerce Shop system and building strong brand visibility,” says Dennis. Having successfully led international marketing and e-commerce teams for over 15 years, he will now focus on working with our new and emerging brand ambassadors: the fashion influencers.
“Through his diverse experiences and management responsibilities, Dennis has gathered extensive expertise in process optimization and application development. His consulting prowess in digitally transforming companies makes him a perfect fit for Spread Group and Spreadshop’s international approach,” says Hugo Smoter, Chief Commercial Officer of Spread Group.
With his exceptional connections in the international marketing industry and his Forbes Agency Council membership, Dennis has his fingers at the pulse of current trends, challenges and solutions in e-commerce marketing. He also writes as a specialist contributor for forbes.com.
We are celebrating our company’s anniversary: Our corporate group was founded as the student start-up “Spreadshirt” by Lukasz Gadowski and Matthias Spiess in 2002. Since then, we have grown to five internationally operating e-commerce platforms: Spreadshirt Create Your Own, Spreadshirt Marketplace, Spreadshop, TeamShirts and SPOD (Spreadshirt Print-on-Demand).
“We can be very proud of we have achieved together over the past 18 years. Spread Group has beaten many better funded businesses to become the only true international PoD market leader by focusing on what is important for the customer and by having an excellent team. We will continue to focus on product and business model innovations in the future,” says Philip Rooke, CEO of Spread Group.
On our anniversary, we would like to invite you to look back on eventful and exciting 18 years:
18. Expanding our research and development at the Leipzig site
At the start of 2020, the company expands its range of machines at its main site in Leipzig. In addition to six embroidery machines, it is the first supplier in Germany to install digital printers for printing polyester materials.
17. Foundation of SPOD
SPOD is brought to life! The SPOD (Spreadshirt Print-On-Demand) drop-shipping service is part of the Shopify offering in the USA since 2019.
16. Spread Group enters the wall decoration market
In 2018, the company introduces posters and wall art in the marketplace and partner stores.
15. Record year in 2017
The group increases its global sales to over 100 million euros for the first time and achieves a record EBITDA of 8.2 million euros.
14. Launch of the new partner area
Since 2016 store operators and marketplace designers have been creating and designing their stores and managing their ideas and products in this new command centre.
13. Foundation of the Spreadshop brand
The completely responsive and free store system is given its own brand name in 2015: Spreadshop.
12. Opening of the new production site in the Czech Republic
The expansion continues: In 2015, a new production facility is opened in Krupka, Ústí nad Labem region in the Czech Republic.
11. Foundation of the TeamShirts brand
With the launch of the TeamShirts brand in 2014, there is now a range of products and functionalities that are specifically aimed at the growing number of group orders.
10. Launch of the first collection under own label
In 2013, the e-commerce company launches its own collection, which specializes in print-on-demand and is continuously expanded to include organic products.
9. Expansion in the American market
The opening of a new production facility in Henderson (Las Vegas, Nevada) in 2012 is a response to record growth in the USA.
8. Stefanie Nobis becomes Feelgood Manager
Since 2011 Stefanie Nobis has been caring for the well-being and the community feeling of the employees at work.
7. International T-Shirt Day
In 2008, International T-Shirt Day takes place for the first time. This special day is celebrated annually from now on with online and offline events at the Berlin and Boston locations.
6. Digital direct print enters production
Since 2008, sellers and end customers have been able to have pixel graphics produced using the digital direct printing process. The first machines from the Israeli company Kornit move in this year.
5. With the relaunch of the website comes the marketplace
The marketplace starts in 2007 with the relaunch of the complete website. It is a platform, which connects designers and end customers with one another.
4. Top 5 placement in the ranking Europe’s Top 500
In 2006, the company is awarded a top five ranking for the first time in an international competition. This is for its achievements as a growing company.
3. Launch of the “Shirt-O-Mat”
The T-shirt designer – an interactive application that allows you to place shirt motifs on various products – is launched in 2004 under the name “Shirt-O-Mat”.
2. Expansion into the USA
Spreadshirt Inc. starts business in Louisville, USA, as a 100 % subsidiary in 2004.
1. Foundation of Spreadshirt
Business studies student Lukasz Gadowski and graduate engineer Matthias Spiess founded “Spreadshirt GbR” in Leipzig (Germany) in 2002. Spreadshirt is one of the first “social commerce” companies that turns consumers into producers.
Jürgen Krisch becomes Spread Group’s new CTO
Published 05. Nov 2020 in Company Insights
Spread Group strengthens its Management Board with Jürgen Krisch, who succeeds Guido Laures as Chief Technology Officer.
Today Spread Group appoints Jürgen Krisch as its new Chief Technology Officer. Jürgen Krisch will shape the organizational and strategic development of the IT department, together with the 100-strong team, to actively promote the Group’s continued growth. He succeeds Guido Laures, who is looking forward to new personal and professional challenges after seven years at Spread Group.
Krisch has been working at the interface between fashion and e-commerce for 24 years. Most recently he was head of the e-commerce IT department in the Witt Group, a member of the Otto Group. The autodidact started his career at Beate Uhse new media GmbH. After several years of self-employment as a consultant, he was recruited to manage the IT integration of customers from the fashion business at Arvato Bertelsmann.
“In my new position as CTO, I would like to build on the excellent structures and actively support our divisions with smart IT solutions. I am particularly keen to lead in an agile manner and support my employees in their personal development,” emphasizes Jürgen Krisch.
Philip Rooke, CEO of Spread Group, is looking forward to working with Krisch: “With his strong history in eCommerce expertise and his qualities as a leader, Jürgen will further expand our technological leadership within the industry. We have aggressive plans for expansion, and these will be driven by technology in our international platform. We are looking forward to his new ideas and analytical expertise!”
At the Licensing International Awards ceremony, prizes were awarded to young talented professionals from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Nominated as a “Rising Star,” Ann-Katrin Hager, Head of Licensing Europe at Spreadshirt, won over the advisory board, retailers, external experts and the press.
“I am very happy about this great recognition! I also owe the nomination to my great working environment. On my journey from working student to Head of Licensing Europe, I was able to get to know the licensing business on all levels and develop it into my great professional passion. A big thank you goes out to my great partners in the industry and my colleagues at Spreadshirt,” says Hager, who was one of five recipients of the esteemed “Rising Star” award.
In his congratulatory speech, moderator Peter Hollo, founder of Ph-Internationals Consultants, emphasized the category was aimed at exceptional talents with a passion for licensing, regardless of their age: “We have some extraordinary talent in our creative and fast moving industry who may not have been in their jobs for a long time but show commitment and creativity. These can be young career starters or career changers new to licensing. Age is not the decisive factor here, but commitment, drive, and passion for licensing,” said Hollo.
Recognized as an ‘industry Oscar,’ the Licensing International Germany Awards have been presented for 19 years. This year, the awards were personally presented to the winners by Mr. Hollo via video. The jury members were appointed by the German chapter of Licensing International and represent the entire professional spectrum of the licensing industry.