GA Trade July-Aug 2014 - page 30

GAT:
You have more than 25
years of experience in the building
products and flooring industries.
Throughout your career, you have
helped firms leverage their sales,
logistics and operations. How does
it feel to be the new President/GM
of Hansgrohe, Inc?
Erik Christensen (EC):
It feels
great. Hansgrohe has a legacy of
innovation, the highest quality
standards, exceptional customer and
market focus, a commitment to
environmental sustainability, and
solid business performance year
after year. The peoplemake the
companywhat it is and this team is
outstanding. They are dedicated and
passionate about what they do. From
customer service, to interfacingwith
channel customers, to operations, to
sustainable product manufacturing,
to sales, there is a common thread of
excellence that really stands out. I'm
proud to be able to lead and grow
with Hansgrohe.
GAT:
What are your personal, and
the company’s visions, to build on
Hansgrohe’s growth record in
North America?What are the
biggest potentials and challenges
of this market?
EC:
Simply put, my vision for the
company is to continue the growth
we’ve experienced in the U.S. We
will stay focused on channel needs
and do our best to exceed custom-
ers’ expectations. As a key industry
player, we will continue to adjust
as the market fluctuates, and will
remain nimble and responsive to
those demands and channel
opportunities. I think the biggest
challenge will be the market as a
whole. It looks like things are
stable on the demand side and
predicted to remain that way.
However, like any smart business,
we are aware we must be vigilant
and stay on top of market signals.
GAT:
All of Hansgrohe’s appli-
ances incorporate elements of
innovation and inspiration. How
do you strike this delicate balance
between modern design and
functionality?
EC:
Design always comes first.
Then we challenge our R&D/
Engineering departments to use
their technical mastery to integrate
the functionality into the design.
This process has resulted inmany
proprietary innovations and it is
what makes Hansgrohe a leader in
the market. As we work with our
world-class designers, we do not
change their visions, nor do we
change ours. We simply find a
way to fit the function with the
W E L C O M E T O T H E C - S U I T E
Interviewwith
Erik Christensen
President &General Manager, Hansgrohe, Inc.
WELCOME
TO THE
C
IntroducingNewC-Level Executives to the
German-American Business Community
-SUITE
ErikChristensen
President/GM, Hansgrohe, Inc.
30
GermanAmerican Trade July/Aug 2014
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