Wolfsburg, Germany-based automaker Volkswagen AG has filled two senior management posts that will play key roles in the group's plan to overtake Toyota Motor Corp. as the world's biggest automaker by 2018. VW hired Andreas Offermann, a 54-year-old marketing expert who is currently head of sales coordination at Porsche AG, to take charge of VW's national sales companies, which directly oversee dealers in 153 countries.
Offermann will assume his new post on April 1, 2011. The oversight post has been vacant since October 2010, when 51-year-old Jonathan Browning left to become Volkswagen of America's CEO.
Browning, who formerly headed worldwide sales and marketing at General Motors Company, was hired for the newly created post on June 1, 2010, and occupied it for barely four months.
Offermann will report to Christian Klinger, VW Group sales and marketing chief. Klinger said in a statement that VW's growth and increasing market dynamics present “demanding challenges” when it comes to coordinating its sales companies.
Klinger added that the national sales companies work directly with dealers, thereby ensuring the implementation of sales targets and, thus, they are a key factor in Volkswagen's success. In 1994, Offermann joined Porsche as head of export sales; in 1999, he was given responsibility for coordinating all sales activities.
Before Porsche, he was with BMW AG, where he was head of production planning for importers’ markets and head of product and volume planning, marketing planning and finance controlling for the overseas region. Offermann studied business management and he completed his doctorate at the University of Cologne's Department of Marketing and Marketing Research.