Munich. The Munich-based IIOT AI startup KONUX is strengthening its management team with the addition of three highly-qualified new hires, all of whom bring with them many years of management experience from a variety of industries: Sébastien Schikora (formerly Tesla), Benjamin Jansen (formerly T-Systems International) and Dr. Thomas Kolar (formerly Accenture) are new Vice Presidents of the KONUX Management Team. The team includes CEO Andreas Kunze, his two co-founders Dennis Humhal (COO) and Vlad Lata, as well as CFO Maximilian Hasler. Vlad, previously CTO of KONUX, will take over a strategic role for the company as Vice Chairman.
KONUX combines smart sensors and AI-based analytics to enable higher train punctuality and network capacity through predictive maintenance planning and an optimized utilization of railroads.
After almost two decades in the US, Sébastien Schikora is returning to his home in Munich. He most recently worked for the automotive company Tesla, and was "Senior Manager Energy Products – Software" for software components of energy products such as Powerwall and Powerpack. Previously, he worked as Director Product Management and Development for the Californian energy company Echelon, and for eleven years in various roles for Hewlett-Packard. There he already had many contacts with startups. As Vice President Engineering at KONUX, Sébastien will focus primarily on the development and delivery of new products and also expand the company’s strongly innovation-driven engineering team. According to Sébastien, he was particularly attracted to his new challenge of “getting to know a new industry in which the digitization potential is gigantic.” In his view, the rail network represents one of the most important means of transportation for industrial companies, and one cannot invest enough in it.
The new KONUX Vice President Sales is Benjamin Jansen. He started in the 90s as founder and Managing Director of the online shop “flowers.de” before moving to the BBDO agency SELLBYTEL Group as Managing Director. There he discovered his passion for process-oriented, structured sales – his “Sales DNA”. As Vice President Global Sales at Nemetschek Allplan, Benjamin was responsible for global sales and drove the digital transformation from traditional software sales to the new subscription-based models (Cloud and SaaS models). Most recently, Benjamin was Director Cloud Channel at T-Systems International’s Digital Division in the area of key accounts. Benjamin loves to structure and scale sales organizations. “I will contribute the knowledge I have built up over the last 20 years to KONUX in order to drive the exciting and promising topic of digitization in the railway industry forward.”
Dr. Thomas Kolar, Accenture’s Managing Director for many years, is Vice President Customer Delivery & Success and responsible for the successful implementation of customer projects. Thomas’ mission is, “ensuring the complete satisfaction of our customers after the contract has been signed.” He can draw on his deep experience in project delivery in the industry segments of communications, media and technology at Accenture. He spent a total of 23 years in a variety of roles with the consulting firm. After this long, successful time in a global company, Kolar explains his decision to join KONUX by saying that he "wanted to contribute his diverse knowledge to a dynamic startup.” He currently serves KONUX customers in three countries.
In addition, Vlad Lata, former CTO of KONUX, will assume the newly-created position of Vice Chairman for the Munich-based IIoT AI company. In his new role as “Strategic Ambassador,” Vlad Lata is focused on the company’s external image within the industry. This includes communication with customers and partners as well as the presentation of KONUX’s product and technology vision at industry events. With his deep technological know-how, Vlad will also test and evaluate potentially exciting innovations in the future and identify their market opportunities for KONUX in cooperation with the product teams.
KONUX CEO Andreas Kunze considers the company to be “operationally perfectly positioned for the next growth phase.” Following the recent conclusion of contracts with additional industrial customers and the successful Series B financing round, nothing now stands in the way of the next expansion target of being active in more than half a dozen countries by the end of the year.
Munich-based IIoT AI company KONUX integrates smart sensor systems and AI-based analytics to deliver asset insights in real time and to enable its customers to switch to predictive maintenance. The end-to-end solution helps clients continuously monitor their infrastructure, identify maintenance needs ahead of time, and improve operational efficiency. KONUX’s mission is to empower the rail industry to operate with the highest availability. Since its foundation in 2014, KONUX has raised $38M from world leading investors and expanded in Europe and to Asia. For more information please go to www.konux.com.