In November 2013, Ralf Usbeck was awarded the international ‘Serial Innovator of Travel Technology’ award at the World Travel Market in London.
How did it all start?
At the age of 23, Ralf Usbeck founded Usbeck-Engineering GmbH, a company that managed the development of graphical information systems. In 2000, the company rebranded to TravelTainment GmbH and under the leadership of Ralf, products including TT-IBE and BistroPortal were created, along with Datamix, a dynamic packaging solution for the travel industry.
As Chief Operating Officer and co-founder of Peakwork, Michael Schmidt is responsible for both technical account management and project management. He keeps an eye on existing projects as well as focusing on the continuous development of customer relations through new strategic projects. With extensive experience of Peakwork’s operations, he understands most of the company’s strategic business areas, as over time he has been responsible for Product Development, Operations, Communications and more. Since 2009, Michael has led the company to grow from 5 to more than 200 colleagues.
Working for nearly 20 years in the travel technology business, Michael Schmidt started his career at Traveltainment, responsible for both the Project and Product Management divisions, playing a major part in the development of several new strategic products and projects.
Dr. Thomas van Kaldenkerken
Dr. Thomas van Kaldenkerken has first-class knowledge and extensive experience from his role as Managing Director in international strategy in the consumer goods industry. The Doctor of Economics previously led the international expansion of Schleich where he still acts as a member of the Advisory Board
In June 2015, Dr. van Kaldenkerken joined Peakwork, strengthening the Management Team in his new role as CFO. His focus is on company finances, HR and supporting strategic company development. His move from the Peakwork Supervisory Board (2013-2015) into the Management Team means Peakwork can profit from his first-rate expertise in strategic company management and expansion strategies.
Annika Kessel is Senior Vice President Global Business at Peakwork AG and Managing Director at Peakwork Inc. She runs the global business development and ecommerce products at Peakwork, especially the international expansion into markets like Americas and China with its strategic partners. Her focus is building partnerships with metasearch and other global online players, connecting the right suppliers and products, increasing benefits and platform effectivity for all partners in Player Hub network incl. cooperations with Facebook, Google and Co.
Annika joined Peakwork in 2014. Prior to that, she worked in senior positions building the hotel start up OTA formerly JustBook Mobile/Secret Escapes, at United Nations as a business consultant and with the European tour operator DER Touristik in strategy and dynamic travel packaging. She gained experience from University Degrees in Germany/Canada/US, e.g. in Silicon Valley at Stanford University.
As Chief Product Officer, Joao Gonzaga is responsible for Peakwork's product portfolio, improvement of innovation processes and for the end-to-end customer experience, ensuring timely launches of new products and features according to the Peakwork strategy and roadmap. To secure the stringent implementation of the company strategy, Joao has also taken over the role of Chief Technology Officer and is responsible for the software development and IT. He joined Peakwork in October 2017.
Prior to joining Peakwork, Joao Gonzaga was a senior executive and entrepreneur with over 20 years’ experience in building products in telecommunications, technology and internet industries. In a number of high-impact roles (CTO, COO, CPO and CEO), both at national and international level - Germany and USA - Joao led the development of top-rated products and services for mobile operators, brands and advertising agencies with regards to their mobile strategy and execution. Major clients included Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom, Coca Cola, Qualcomm, Samsung, BlackBerry, ESPN, MTV, Starwood Hotels, and Saatchi & Saatchi.
Markus Pfau was an entrepreneur in the fields of robotics and 3D graphics programming before he joined TravelTainment in 2002. As Director of Research & Development, he was a major force behind significant technological developments such as dynamic packaging.
Since 2009, Markus Pfau leads the Peakwork Development Team. As a Board member, Markus is responsible for programming all code lines. He is constantly looking for new IT talent and visionaries.
While studying economics Oliver founded silversurfer7 in 1999 as a full service web agency. In the next years he accompanied companies in retail and tourism sector to do successful B2B and B2C projects. Since 2003 the main focus is on touristic customers getting connected to travel technology. 2015 silversurfer7 became part of the peakwork company network.
Manuel Saballus is an experienced specialist in the field of dynamic packaging engines and travel technology. At Peakwork, he is responsible for international business development and consulting in the fields of packaging solutions for Airlines, Tour Operators, OTA’s and Metasearch companies.
Stefan Otlinghaus joined Peakwork in December 2018 as our Vice President Business Development. In this position, he is responsible for the expansion of the Peakwork Leisure Travel Network through new strategic partners and customers.
Stefan brings 25 successful years of international Business Development and B2B sales experience gained with companies including Cisco, Hewlett-Packard and more. As Head of Business Development at Cisco, he was responsible for the company’s expansion by maximizing customer value in markets across Europe, Middle East, Africa and Russia.
With a degree in business informatics, Stefan has an extensive understanding of the partners business, technical requirements and knows exactly how to discover and implement new revenue streams for higher business results.
Dominik is Director Accommodation & Ancillary Services at Peakwork. He joined Peakwork in May 2015 and has since developed the accommodation offerings, as well as Ancillary Service Connectivity – including Insurances, Car Rentals, Activietes and Transfers.
Dominik comes from the Wholesale Segment and spent prior to Peakwork six years in various management positions with Tourico Holidays, in particular in the field of Sales and Business Development.
Dimo Pashov is a seasoned professional with broad knowledge of the Leisure Travel Industry and proven track record in Sales and Sales Management across multiple business verticals. As Head of Sales EMEA, he is responsible for sales in Europe, Middle East and Africa, with a focus on strengthening and expanding the Player-Hub network and securing new strategic partners and clients across these regions. Dimo has held various managerial positions at TeamAmerica, Tourico Holidays, TravelStoreMaker.com Inc. and others, where he has gained over 15 years of experience in Direct Sales, New Market Acquisition, Business Development and Account Management.
Gabriel Seijo Leiro
Gabriel Seijo Leiro has joined Peakwork in 2015. Since then he has been involved in projects with for the Player Hub Network such as Bedfinder, Google, Expedia, Facebook & Co. He represents Peakwork in the Americas together with our Sales Team and works on solutions and strategies for our partners based on the Player-Hub Technology.
Before joining Peakwork, Gabriel has been working in in different positions within the Travel Tech Industry right after finishing his business and communication degrees in Spain and Germany.
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