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Speakers of the ISU 2019

The following speakers of the ISU present current issues on the topic "Transforming Exhibitions - Core Competencies of Tomorrow's Matchmaking" in lectures and interactive workshops.

Anna Abelein

Managing Director and Co - Founder Protostart GmbH 

Workshop Wednesday | June 5th, 2019 | 02:30 p.m. – 06:00 p.m.

Changing Ecosystem

Workshop Title:
“Agile Leadership: Taking action in the face of complexity!”

Content of the Workshop: Nowadays, businesses increasingly engage with external ecosystems. Thus, to function in a world of ecosystems, companies will have to figure out how to simultaneously capture external opportunities while getting a handle on the increasing degree of complexity. With an agile mindset, business leaders are better able to critically analyse situations and adapt even in the absence of having all the information. In three interactive hours the participants will discover the principles of agile leadership and will discuss the challenges in comparison with hierarchical leadership models. They will elaborate on their own agile leadership profile and experience central dimensions of agile leadership.

Key Learnings:
• Agile leadership: Central dimensions and challenges
• Own agile leadership profile
• Interactive experience of different leadership dimensions
• Discussion and transfer to the own organization

CV of Anna Abelein
Anna Abelein is managing director of the innovation and collaboration agency Protostart GmbH. As an innovation consultant, she enables companies in establishing an agile working environment as well as user-centered product development. Her main focus is to empower people with the mindset behind agile methods to facilitate agile leadership and promote the capacity of teams and organizations to deal with complex challenges. Before the foundation of Protostart, she managed a study program for banking executives at the German Savings Banks Association and set up the project office of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation in Honduras. She is alumni of the School of Design Thinking at the Hasso Plattner Institute, studied political science, public policy and economics and conducted extensive training in the area organizational development and agile methods.


Dr. Holger Feist

CSO at Messe München

Lecture Thursday | June 6th, 2019 | 11:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Rethink the Matchmaking Strategy

Lecture Title:
“Bits & Pretzels: It’s a Perfect Match for Startups!”

Content of the lecture:
Bits and Pretzels is all about perfect matches: Founders meet founders, founders meet investors, founders meet talents, founders meet research, founders meet corporates — and vice versa. In their conversation, Bernd and Holger highlight some of the success factors for good matchmaking among all participants and discuss the various formats Bits and Pretzels have developed to support it. From personal matchmakers for individuals to the famous Munich Oktoberfest morning on the very last day, the event is centered around founders for each and every minute.

CV of Dr. Holger Feist:
Holger Feist is an entrepreneurial strategist with a strong economic background and a passion for digital transformation. He has comprehensive experience across industries (exhibition, media, mobile coms, software) and functions (general management, innovation, business development, M&A, controlling, marketing).
Since 2014, Holger is Chief Strategy Officer (CSO) of Messe München GmbH, and as such responsible for managing its shareholder interests in Bits & Pretzels. He is also Vice Chair of the Marketing Committee at UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry. Before entering the exhibition industry, Holger held various positions at Hubert Burda Media, including CEO of Burda Intermedia Publishing, and with McKinsey & Company.
Holger studied economics at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich, where he also obtained his doctoral degree, and was Visiting Lecturer at Princeton University.


Tim Groot

CEO and Co-Founder at Grip

Lecture Friday | June 7th, 2019 | 11:00 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.

Tried & Tested - Best Practice Examples

Lecture title:
“AI-powered Matchmaking - How to employ artificial intelligence to enhance your networking solutions!”

Content of the lecture:
In this session, Tim Groot, Founder & CEO of Grip, will give an overview of how Artificial Intelligence is used in other industries for Recommendation Systems, Image Recognition and a variety of other applications. As well as how this is impacting and being applied to the events industry for facial recognition at registration, matchmaking and post-event analysis.

CV of Tim Groot
Tim is CEO and Co-Founder at Grip - the world’s first and most advanced AI-powered event networking solution. Grip empowers professionals and the event industry by providing full-cycle support that facilitates quality interactions. At its core, their proprietary technology drives intelligent recommendations through Grip’s self-learning matchmaking engine. They use natural language processing, advanced algorithms and deep neural networks to constantly learn about the professional goals and interests of visitors, exhibitors and sponsors. As a relatively small company, Grip has already pulled in multiple awards for their technology and provide heir solutions to the likes of UBM, Reed and ITE.
Tim graduated with a BBA in International Management from the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences and the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. He started his career in tech working as an Account Manager for a leading app development agency, Nodes. His passion for the app development space eventually lead him to co-found Grip in 2014. Besides Grip, Tim is also a member of Founders of the Future - an exclusive invite-only network of young professionals who are expected to have a positive impact on the world. Tim is an entrepreneur at heart with a passion for creating innovative products, having started his first company at the of age 17.


Prof. Nikolaus Hafermaas

Creative Director TIRAD Berlin

Lecture Thursday | June 6th, 2019 | 12:15 p.m. – 13:15 p.m.

Rethink the Matchmaking Strategy

Lecture Title:
“Trade Fair Organizers as Content Creator & Community Builder”

Content of the lecture:
Prof. Hafermaas will point out, why trade fair organizers should become content creators themselves and actively support community building. In his opinion, the trade fair itself should be seen as a "point of experience" and the surrounding network/ecosystem as a "point of inspiration". Organizers should capture the opportunity of designing the “meeting process” and “the need to meet” themselves.

CV of Prof. Nikolaus Hafermaas
Prof. Nikolaus (Nik) Hafermaas is an international award-winning artist, designer and educational leader. After a 14-year hiatus at world-renowned ArtCenter College of Design in Pasadena, California, where he served as Dean and Department Chair for graduate and undergraduate Graphic Design, he returned to TRIAD Berlin as Creative Director in June 2018. There, he focuses on the further international development of two important growth areas: mediatecture and new digital experiences. Nik had initially joined TRIAD Berlin in 1995, soon becoming Chief Creative Officer and principal partner. During his tenure, he helped creating the inaugural TRIAD exhibition project “The Dream of Vision” at Gasometer Oberhausen, pavilions for the World Expo2000, Swiss Expo02 and many other key projects.
As former AIGA national board member, he is a regularly featured speaker at design conferences across the globe, such as the IFA+ Summit in Berlin, the VOR Summit in Mexico City and the Create Change forum in Beijing. His work has been recognized with international design awards from AIGA, One Club ADC, The Industrial Designers Society of America, IDA Design Awards and most recently the Society for Experiential Graphic Design (SEGD) and is regularly featured in publications and exhibitions.


Sophie Holt

Global Strategy Director at Explori

Lecture Wednesday | June 6th, 2019 | 10:30 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.

Rethink the Matchmaking Strategy

Lecture title:
“Making Connections. How are visitor and exhibitor expectations changing and why is this important?”

Content of the lecture:
With reference to The Global Visitor Insight project, Sophie will explore what the world’s biggest ever study of visitor experience can tell us about the importance of face-to-face connections between visitors and exhibitors. Where should organisers be placing their focus and what tactics are likely to prove most effective today and in future?

CV of Sophie Holt
Sophie is an experienced event marketer who has worked with a number of respected B2B and B2C organisers. Over her career, she has launched 11 trade and consumer events in sectors as diverse as healthcare management, fitness and gaming.
Sophie has first-hand experience in the power of customer insight to shape event strategies that deliver sustainable growth. She is passionate about the role of customer experience in the future of exhibitions.
She regularly authors white papers and opinion pieces for the industry press and association bodies including the Global Visitor and Exhibitor Insights Reports for UFI and FaceTime research for the AEO.
Prior to joining the exhibitions industry, Sophie worked in PR and events client-side, with a number of well-known brands including Avon Cosmetics and Toyota.


Howard Klein

Former Development Director at Reed Exhibitions

Lecture: Wednesday | June 5th, 2019 | 10:45 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

Changing Ecosystem

Lecture Title:
“The Impact of M&A on the Exhibition Industry”

Content of the lecture:
Acquisitions have been a major feature of the exhibition industry for many years and continue to have a high profile. In this session, we will explore the reasons for such M&A activity and the continuing impact: for acquirers, the targets and other organisers as they strive to improve customer satisfaction.

CV of Howard Klein
An experienced business development professional with over 30 years of working within the trade-show industry in a variety of roles. Having gained an MBA at Henley (UK), Howard spent 7 years as Commercial Director for the International Sales Group in Reed Exhibitions, a worldwide role including a responsibility for agent management. He moved on to business development, which has since included a broad range of launches, acquisitions, partnerships and disposals, across a range of sectors and countries. He also has a variety of experience in strategy and general project management.
Having started in UK, but then gained a combined international experience of over 20 years, Howard has enjoyed the challenges of business, especially in BRIC/emerging markets.
An active member of the Executive Committee of UFI, the global association of the exhibition industry, for 6 years until early-2018. UFI Congress Moderator, St. Petersburg, Russia November 2018.


Dr. Lara Lobschat

Assistant Professor of Marketing, University of Münster

Lecture Wednesday | June 5th, 2019 | 09:45 a.m.– 10:45 a.m.

Rethink the Matchmaking Strategy

Lecture Title:
“Is Direct Mail Still Alive?: The Role of Traditional Marketing Instruments in a Changing Ecosystem”

Content of the lecture:
Attribution modeling represents an important topic, particularly for addressing the still unclear effectiveness of offline marketing actions, such as direct mailings, throughout the search-purchase funnel. The current study therefore investigates the effect of direct mailings on upper, middle, and lower funnel performance metrics over time. The results reveal that direct mailings have a positive effect on the number of generic searches on Google, in line with a cross-channel effect, as well as the number of purchases. Direct mailings thus seem effective throughout the search-purchase funnel, both directly and indirectly, with a positive net sales effect. Therefore, direct mailings are far from dead, despite the rise of digital, and remain worthwhile marketing investments.

CV of Dr. Lara Lobschat
After spending 5,5 years at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, Dr. Lara Lobschat joined the University of Münster as Assistant Professor of Marketing in April 2019. She holds a PhD from the University of Cologne and her main research interests are (digital) advertising effectiveness, customer journey analysis and attribution modelling as well as corporate digital responsibility. Her research philosophy follows the aim to answer managerially relevant questions by analyzing both secondary and/or primary data with rigorous empirical analysis techniques. For this purpose, she works closely together with the industry side not only to get access to interesting data sets but also to foster knowledge exchange between academia and practitioners. Especially this managerially-oriented approach and the respective research output have already been honored, e.g., by the Horizont Stiftung (Early Career Grant, 2015) and by MOA (Insight Scientist of the Year, 2018). She has made numerous presentations at (inter)national conferences and her work has been published in Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Service Research, Journal of Interactive Marketing and Long Range Planning.


Dominik Matyka

Chief Advisor DMEXCO & Partner Cavalry Ventures

Lecture Wednesday | June 5th, 2019 | 12:00 p.m. – 12:45 p.m.

Changing Ecosystems

Lecture Title:
“Evolving Matchmaking at DMEXCO: What does Matchmaking mean for exhibitions, nowadays?

Content of the Lecture:
During his lecture, Dr. Matyka will point out what it means to understand the expo business of tomorrow. Building up on that, he will demonstrate how DMEXCO, the meeting place for all important decision-makers from digital business, marketing and innovation, approaches matchmaking using digital tools and platforms. Following this, he will give an overview of a user-centric app with full networking capabilities, which can be applied in the industry.

CV of Dr. Dominik Matyka
Dr. Dominik Matyka (37) is a serial entrepreneur with extensive digital experience having founded multiple companies. He is a board member and chief advisor for DMEXCO, the world's leading digital marketing exposition and conference with more than +40.000 yearly attendees, +1.000 exhibitors and speakers like WPP founder Sir Martin Sorrell, Twitter founder and CEO Jack Dorsey or Facebook’s COO Sheryl Sandberg among many more. In addition to DMEXCO, he is a founding partner at Cavalry Ventures, a leading Berlin-based venture capital fund, having invested in most innovative companies such as Freighthub (together with Northzone), Caroobi (together with BMW). His main expertise is Publishing-, AdTech and MarketingTech. He further has substantive knowledge in Property-, HR- and MedTech. His passion and domain expertise is with marketplaces, SaaS and networks as well as crypto currencies. Before founding Cavalry and joining DMEXCO, Dominik co-founded three successful start-ups and was an active business angel with multiple exits. Most notably, Dominik founded and acted as CEO of plista, a provider of innovative solutions in native advertising and content marketing space, which was eventually sold to WPP Inc.. Before that, he earned a doctorate degree at Technical University of Berlin with studies at the University of Vienna, Cass Business School London and the University of St.Gallen (HSG). Dominik is highly recognized as a successful tech entrepreneur in several prestigious rankings and was a finalist of the EY Entrepreneur of the Year in 2013, ranked multiple times among the most important tech founders and recently got selected Top 100 stars in media and marketing by prestigious W&V magazine.


Rahim Shamji

Founder & CEO, ADR-ODR International

Workshop Thursday | June 6th, 2019 | 02:30 p.m. – 06:00 p.m.

Rethink the Matchmaking Strategy

Workshop Title:
“Negotiation! From bargaining over positions to interest based results (The Harvard Approach)!”

Content of the Workshop:
Working with multiple business partners to realize exhibitions is common, something that makes our jobs exciting and challenging at the same time. Nowadays, changing ecosystems demand an even more active engagement with the outside world to understand competitive threats and sources of value. Everyone wants to participate in decisions that affect them using negotiation to deal with differences. In our face-to-face industry, disagreements are inevitable and negotiation skills an essential asset to maintain successful business relationships. This workshop will support participants to establish and apply ground rules for negotiations with business partners.

CV of Rahim Shamji
Rahim is a professional mediator, negotiator, barrister and trainer. He is the lead mediation trainer and Chief Executive at ADR-ODR International. His role includes training hundreds of delegates worldwide. Rahim’s approach to mediation is constantly improving and his understanding of the nuances of human behavior and conflict makes him an outstanding mediator. Aside from mediation Rahim is a practicing barrister and door tenant at Garden Court Chambers.

Training Experience
• Director of Training – BPP Law School (LPC & BPTC)
• Director of Education and Training – ADR Group
• Head of ADR Group Education and Training Faculty
• Founder and CEO of ADR ODR International Ltd – since 2016

Professional Experience
• Garden Court Chamber – Door Tenant
• President Elect – International Academy of Dispute Resolution (INADR)
• Mediator I Conciliator – National Conciliation Board, UK, Ismaili Community
• Designer and architect of all new mediation training programmes
• Judge and Mediator at the ICC Mediation competition, Paris
• Judge and trainer at INADR competitions, Chicago
• Harvard – Programme on Negotiation – Master class


Rosmarie Steininger  

Founder and CEO Chemistree GmbH

Lecture | June 7, 2019 | 10:15 – 11:00 a.m. 

Best Practice: Learnings from Other Industries   

Lecture Title:   
“The power of personal chemistry – tapping potential by matching hard and soft facts.”  

Content of the lecture:   
Matchmaking cases from BMW rad°hub conference & community to Deutsche Bahn mentoring will illustrate the extraordinary value of algorithm-based matching that takes individual personality and preferences into account. Facing the challenges of large-scale networking, trade fair organizers will learn about Chemistree’s approach to engineering personal connections that ‘click’.   

CV of Rosmarie Steininger: 
The biography of Rosmarie Steininger, Founder and CEO of CHEMISTREE, is all about the importance of finding the people and places that are just the ‘perfect fit’ in order to thrive:  Stipendiary of the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes herself, she started an astonishing career in IT at BMW and eventually joined Eberhard von Kuenheim Foundation as Deputy Managing Director, heading the integration process with BMW Foundation. The thing that struck her most during her time in the foundation was also her impulse to found CHEMISTREE: Meeting the right people in any relevant context in order to build connections that ‘click’. Having experienced the power of personal chemistry herself all along her career path, Rosmarie Steininger is now on a mission to help unearth potential for personal growth, organizational change and community spirit by matching just the very right people.   
As a woman who has made it in tech, it comes pretty naturally that Rosmarie Steininger engages in initiatives that encourage woman to play a larger role in the industry. She is member of the Frauen v erbinden network, speaker at conferences and just recently initiated the female.vision Community herself – inviting women to share and pursue together their vision of the rules and conditions that are crucial for them to thrive professionally.   


Dr. Bernd Storm van’s Gravesande

Founder of Bits & Pretzels

Lecture Thursday | June 6th, 2019 | 11:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Rethink the Matchmaking Strategy

Lecture Title:
“Bits & Pretzels: It’s a Perfect Match for Startups!”

Content of the lecture:
Bits and Pretzels is all about perfect matches: Founders meet founders, founders meet investors, founders meet talents, founders meet research, founders meet corporates — and vice versa. In their conversation, Bernd and Holger highlight some of the success factors for good matchmaking among all participants and discuss the various formats Bits and Pretzels have developed to support it. From personal matchmakers for individuals to the famous Munich Oktoberfest morning on the very last day, the event is centered around founders for each and every minute.

CV of Dr. Bernd Storm van’s Gravesande:
Dr. Bernd Storm van’s Gravesande is co-founder of the contract management service aboalarm (www.aboalarm.de), that he sold to the media company ProsiebenSat1 Media SE. In October 2013, Bernd also founded Bits & Pretzels as a cozy Bavarian founders breakfast with the intention to create a networking platform for the Munich start-up ecosystem. As a co-host, Bernd especially works to help Bits & Pretzels connect and develop partnerships. Thereby, the event has grown to the huge founders festival, where more than 5.000 entrepreneurs meet to discuss current start-up topics.
Earlier in his career, Bernd served as Director Strategy Consumer & Devices at Fujitsu Siemens Computers as well as Business & IT Consultant at Cap Gemini Ernst & Young. Bernd holds a PhD in Management & Information Technology from the Witten/Herdecke University. He studied at Duke University, Vienna Univeristy of Economics and Business and at the University of Manchester.


Ulf Valentin

Head of Strategy

Lecture Friday | June 7th, 2019 | 09:30 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.

Tried & Tested - Best Practice Examples

Lecture title:
„The future of matchmaking? Create room for digital innovations”

Content of the lecture:
Matchmaking is a key component in every market economy. But market dynamics are changing fast through digitalization and platform models are rising. Market leaders can even be disrupted by players outside of a given industry. Using customer examples Ulf Valentin will demonstrate how this shift in market power is impacting market players and how companies may recalibrate in order to build a digital insurance against disruption and optimize their core business for a digital future.

CV of TBD:
Ulf Valentin is responsible for the further development and founding of innovation labs of German and international medium-sized companies (“Mittelstand”) at Convidera GmbH. Convidera is a global digital specialist based in Cologne and accompanies organizations on their way through the digital transformation.
Ulf Valentin's knowledge and vast experience in the field of digital transformation result from years of collaboration with leading minds and creators in product development and optimization of award-winning e-commerce business models, products and digital marketing activities. Until 2018, Ulf Valentin was responsible for product development and innovation at the HRS Group from the Innovation Hub. Prior to that, he built up the social media area, the internal content marketing agency and business development in order to advance the digitization of the HRS Group. He holds a diploma in media economics with a focus on media and management and has been a lecturer in IT and e-commerce in tourism at the International School of Management since 2017.