While parting ways with Silva, a brand that it has been distributing in Italy, Germany and Austria since 2013, the Italian-based Oberalp Group has appointed new executives for its own brands – Salewa, Dynafit, Wild Country and Pomoca – in Europe and the U.S.
For its part, Silva has appointed a new area manager for Germany and Austria, Bernhard von Toll, who was taking care of the brand at Oberalp, although the customer service function for those markets will be handled directly from Silva's head office in Sweden. In Italy, Silva will be working through Ferrino. The new distribution set-up took effect last month.
The divorce from Silva, which was a relatively small brand for Oberalp, had already been agreed about a year ago. In addition to its own brands, Oberalp continues to distribute Speedo in all three countries and many other brands in Italy alone, including Under Armour.
In an unrelated development, Sebastian Schaller has been promoted by Oberalp to the position of key accounts manager for Central Europe. He is taking over the role from Martin Stolzenberger, who, as previously reported, has become one of the two new managing directors of Bergzeit, the German-based online retailer controlled by the Oberrauch family, which also controls Oberalp and Sportler, the Italian chain of sporting goods stores.
Schaller has been with Oberalp for nine years, working most recently as technical sales manager for footwear and equipment. He will be assisted by Johanna Swatosch, who will fill the new role of online key account manager. She comes from Esprit, where she worked for the past few years. Swatosch is a well-known figure at Oberalp, where she previously worked in marketing for Dynafit.
Schaller reports to Mark Landeberger, sales & marketing manager for Central Europe, who in turn reports to Axel Brosch, Oberalp's general manager for Central Europe since last March.
In another management change in Europe, Simon Ackermann is taking charge of sales and marketing for Dynafit and Salewa in Switzerland.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean, Drew Saunders has been promoted to the position of country manager of Salewa North America. He has already spent ten years with this U.S. subsidiary of Oberalp, mostly recently in the role of director of operations. Prior to that, he spent another ten years in the outdoor industry, notably as a product manager for Kelty.
Claes Broqvist, Oberalp's chief sales officer, was acting as interim country manager in North America prior to Saunders' appointment after a previous general manager, Brian Mecham, left after nine months in the post to become the vice president of sales at Spyder. Saunders is now reporting to Brokvist.
Simultaneously with Saunders' promotion, Ross Herr has been elevated to the position of sales and marketing manager at Salewa North America. He joined the company four years ago as sales manager for Dynafit. As he performed well in that role, he was soon made responsible for sales of all Oberalp brands in North America, where he will now be also in charge of executing the group's international marketing concepts.