Executive Board & Senior Management
Dr Ignace Van Meenen
CEO Rickmers Holding AG
Dr Ignace Van Meenen has been Chief Executive Officer of the Rickmers Holding AG since 1 May 2014. Born in Belgium, he is also a member of the Supervisory Board of Rickmers Maritime in Singapore. After studying law in Ghent and Osnabrück, multilingual Dr Van Meenen started his career at Deutsche Bank AG where he held various positions in the Finance Division in Germany and the USA. Later, he held leading management positions as Finance Director and CFO at the leading mining and chemicals group RAG AG, the international media company RTL Group S.A. and the real-estate group DIC. In October 2011 he initially joined the Rickmers Group as CFO. He soon expanded his responsibilities to encompass the role of Deputy CEO before becoming CEO.
Prof. Dr Mark-Ken Erdmann
CFO Rickmers Holding AG
Prof. Dr Mark-Ken Erdmann, born in Tokyo and raised in Asia and Europe, is Chief Financial Officer of the Rickmers Holding AG. Previously he held numerous management positions in the Finance Division of the global media group Bertelsmann, latterly reporting directly to the Bertelsmann Group’s CFO/CEO Dr Thomas
Rabe. After graduating in economics he began his career at Ernst & Young AG. Following executive education sojourns at INSEAD and the Harvard Business School, he has been visiting lecturer for the MBA programme at the HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management since 2007. He is also a Member of the Supervisory Board of Just Software AG, Hamburg, the Advisory Board of Valensina GmbH and is Executive Partner of Erdmann & Shirasawa Family Real Estate GmbH & Co. KG.
Deputy CFO & CRO Rickmers Holding AG
Frank Bünte has been the Company´s Deputy Chief Financial Officer and Chief Risk Officer since July 2014. Beforehand he was responsible for the Group Corporate Finance Division of the Rickmers Group which includes the Treasury & Risk and Capital Markets departments. Following his training in banking with HSH Nordbank AG’s predecessor institution, Hamburgische Landesbank, he graduated in 1994 from the Savings Bank Business Academy, which he attended in parallel to his professional duties. Prior to joining the management team at Rickmers Group in 2010 he held a number of senior management positions in HSH Nordbank AG, latterly responsible for the entire German shipping market.
General Counsel & Chief Compliance Officer
Kirsten Gronau has been General Counsel since January 2017 and has taken over supervision for the Group’s legal organisation and operations worldwide. She has been holding the position as the Group’s Chief Compliance Officer since January 2017 as well. Previously she had been responsible for company and stock corporation law, corporate governance and labour law. Before joining Rickmers Group in 2015, she worked numerous years as in-house lawyer primarily focused on commercial and company law for the HASPA Finanzholding group and HanseNet Telekommunikation GmbH. At BDO AG she advised large corporations and medium-sized companies on planned restructurings from a corporate law and tax point of view.
Following law studies and legal clerkship at the universities of Giessen, Nottingham, Munich and Hamburg she completed specialist training courses for labour law, tax law, commercial and company law. Furthermore she is qualified as compliance officer tested and certified by TÜV Rheinland.
CEO Maritime Assets & Maritime Services
Holger Strack has been Chief Executive Officer of the Maritime Assets segment since 2011. Since July 2016 he has additionally held the position of CEO of the Maritimes Services segment. Based on his longstanding experience in the shipping industry he became Managing Director of Rickmers Reederei in 2010. He has been involved in initiating more than 70 vessel projects and the sale of 50 vessels within the last three years. Today he is responsible for the asset management with a value of more than EUR2.0 billion, leveraging on almost two decades of shipping expertise. His profound knowledge in shipping also enables him as former Managing Director of companies in the Maritime Services segment to be involved in the development of our technical and operational shipmanagement. Apart from the daily business, Holger Strack is now focusing on the business development and customer relationship management to further establish our network with the leading shipping liner companies and international financial investors involved in the maritime industry.
After an apprenticeship in Industrial Commercial Management, he started his career in Rickmers Reederei already in 1997 and worked successfully in various departments and numerous senior management positions in Accounting and Treasury, becoming Director Treasury in 2004.
Ulrich Ulrichs has been Chief Executive Officer of the Rickmers-Linie segment since 2014. After working national and international for more than 15 years in various commercial and operational senior management positions for renowned shipping companies such as Austral Asia Line (AAL) and Hanjin Shipping, he joined us in 2005 as Head of Line Management with Rickmers-Linie. With his specialized knowledge in the breakbulk, heavy lift and project cargoes segment he took over the responsibility of the operational business of the Rickmers-Linie as Chief Operating Officer and Managing Director. Under his leadership a successful restructuring process of the Rickmers-Linie was implemented and combined with the sharpened strategic orientation of the Rickmers Linie.
Ulrich Ulrichs graduated in shipping economics and port management after studying at the Oldenburg Polytechnic and the University of Plymouth, UK and gained practical shipping experience on board during his studies.
Rüdiger Gerhardt has been Chief Administrative Officer of the Rickmers-Linie segment since 2014 and additionally serves as Managing Director of all Rickmers-Linie companies worldwide. He started his career at the Rickmers Group in 1978, leveraging on more than 35 years of experience in shipping with a particular focus on heavy lift and project cargoes. Against this background he has built up an extensive global network in the maritime industry. In 1993, he was entitled as Director responsible for finance, controlling and human resources, while Rickmers-Linie was owned by Hapag-Lloyd AG. In 2000 he had a key role in re-transferring the business back to the Rickmers Group and thereafter was also appointed as Managing Director of Rickmers Holding GmbH & Cie. KG in 2008.
Dr Timo Haenelt
CFO Maritime Assets
Dr Timo Haenelt has been Managing Director of Rickmers Reederei and Chief Financial Officer of the Maritime Assets segment since December 2016. In addition he holds the position of Executive Vice President Accounting, Reporting, Mergers & Acquisitions at Rickmers Holding. Prior to his joining the Rickmers Group he worked many years in Audit and Accounting Advisory for the PricewaterhouseCoopers AG.
Dr Haenelt studied business administration and passed the tax consultancy examination.
Thorsten Pulver has been Chief Financial Officer of the Rickmers-Linie segment since 2014 and was additionally appointed Managing Director of Rickmers-Linie in January 2015. Before joining Rickmers-Linie as Chief Restructuring Officer, he held numerous senior management positions as Chief Restructuring Officer and Managing Director in German shipping companies. Amongst others, as Managing Director and Chief Restructuring Officer of Komrowski Group, he was responsible for the successful restructuring of Reederei Bluestar and Komrowski Befrachtungskontor. Prior to working in shipping companies he was the departmental head of Corporate Development of Thyssen Handelsunion AG before joining one of the biggest German management consultancies as a partner focusing on restructuring projects.
Thorsten Pulver graduated in engineering at the University of Siegen and holds a M.B.A. of the University of Wales, UK.
CFO Maritime Services
Gunnar Holm has been Chief Financial Officer of the Maritime Services segment since July 2014 and is also Managing Director of Rickmers Shipmanagement, Hamburg and Director of Rickmers Shipmanagement Singapore. Based in Singapore from 2013 to 2015 he additionally served as Financial Director of Rickmers Asia, where he was in charge of improving and optimizing Rickmers Group's financial organization in Singapore. Prior to joining the Rickmers Group in 2010, he graduated in economics and started his career at the international audit and advisory firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, where he mainly focused on shipping clients, resulting in almost 10 years of multinational experience in shipping and finance.
COO Maritime Services
Anurag Mathur is Chief Operating Officer of the Maritime Services segment and Managing Director of Rickmers Shipmanagement Singapore as of January 2015. Prior to joining Rickmers Group in 2012 as General Manager of Rickmers Shipmanagement Singapore, he held a number of management positions in different fields of shipmanagement and was responsible for all types of vessels including containerships, bulk carriers and tanker vessels. Beforehand he started his career at sea and exited after almost two decades of sailing expertise as captain. Building on that comprehensive experience, Anurag Mathur is well connected to the major players in the maritime industry and has in particular extensive knowledge in the business development of shipmanagement.