New OKM CEO: From Treasure Hunting to Managing World's Leading Detector Manufacturer
After the retirement of managing director Ingolf Mueller, Stephan A. Grund succeeds as new managing director alongside OKM founder Andreas Krauss. At the age of 31, Stephan A. Grund is the youngest in the company. Thanks to his focused and intensive professional experience, he contributes strategic expertise, intercultural skills and fresh ideas.
New Spirit of Innovation for OKM
After successfully completing his studies in business administration and management, which also took him to Hong Kong, London, Paris and Berlin, he gained relevant professional experience in management consulting at BAIN & COMPANY. Most recently, he was Managing Director of CATERWINGS, the largest online catering marketplace in Europe - a business model that he founded, developed and finally sold.
Succession Management at OKM
Get more background information on how the young founder takes over an established medium-sized company in Thuringia, how he wants to dust off the world market leader for metal detectors with modern management methods and lead it to new greatness. Continue reading
Interview with the New OKM Managing Director
We have been asking the new managing director how he spent his first few weeks in office:
OKM: Hello, Mr Grund. Welcome to OKM! It's great that you take the time for a short interview.
Mr Grund: Hello, thank you very much for the warm welcome here in Altenburg at OKM. I am happy to answer your questions!
OKM: What task did you just interrupt for this interview?
Mr Grund: I have just been working more intensively on the use of the Rover C4. The Rover C4 is one of our best-selling detectors, which is used all over the world especially for cavity search. Since we have been booked in the coming week for a search service in Vogtland, Thuringia, in which I very much like to participate, I would like to get to know our products in detail.
OKM: Have you worked with metal detectors before? Are you a treasure hunter yourself?
Mr Grund: Absolutely. Especially when I was a child, I used to go treasure hunting with my grandfather in the Rhineland. Unfortunately, we didn't have any OKM devices back then, so I used conventional metal detectors. We were always looking for gold nuggets, which my grandfather collected. For me as a child these were great adventures, which I now remember gladly in my function as managing director at OKM.
OKM: How do you spend your free time these days?
Mr Grund: I am an enthusiastic sportsman and enjoy spending my spare time in the Alps for winter sports or mountain biking in the summer months. I'm also a big soccer fan, but after two cruciate ligament ruptures I only watch from the outside. I also enjoy the time with my family and friends, which I would like to introduce to our OKM products.
OKM: After your entrepreneurial activity at Caterwings, you joined the OKM in Altenburg. How did this come about?
Mr Grund: OKM has developed splendidly over the past 20 years under the leadership of Mr Mueller and Mr Krauss. With the wide product range of detectors and the new Body Screener, OKM has been a global technology leader for years. I am convinced that together as a team with our very loyal and highly trained employees we will lead OKM into the next successful decade. I try to use my skills especially in sales and marketing.
OKM: What thoughts came to your mind when you visited the pyramid in Altenburg for the first time?
Mr Grund: The company building is of course impressive and great to look at. It definitely fits in perfectly with the OKM business model. We sell the majority of our products in the Egyptian and Arabic regions, so that the Altenburg pyramid was built on the basis of OKM‘s sales markets. In addition, we can optimally map our overall value-added depth with product development, production, marketing, sales and quality assurance here.
OKM: What is your plan for the next 6 months?
Mr Grund: My first goal is to get to know our entire team with our fantastic employees. OKM has been a successful company for over 20 years, so first of all I want to understand our products, processes, customers and dealers. In the long run, 3 topics are of utmost importance to me: 1) to remain a technological leader in the worldwide market, 2) to build up the most attractive employer in the region of Altenburg and 3) to make the OKM brand the global number 1 for treasure hunters and archaeologists. OKM: Thank you for the interview. We are looking forward to new challenges and a successful future together.
The previous managing director Ingolf Mueller has always convinced with his negotiating strength and directness over the past 20 years. In his time as managing director he has set a unique monument: The pyramid in Altenburg as OKM company headquarters is a striking landmark that stands both for the success of the company and for his work. The entire OKM team thanks Mr. Mueller for many years of commitment and wishes him all the best.