Dealerscope 2020 40 Under 40: Katharina Elssner, Ingram Micro
For a look at the rest of the 2020 40 Under 40 honorees, be sure to check out the 40 Under 40 homepage.
Job Title: Senior Vendor Business Manager
Company: Ingram Micro
Years in Industry: 9
Where You Grew Up, Live Now: Grew up in Gadebusch, Germany and moved to the U.S. in October 2010. I now live in Corona Del Mar, enjoying the sunny SoCal life.
Education: I went to an academy in Lueneburg, Germany and got my AA in Export and Trade, as well as my Business Economist Degree. I then received my B.A. in Business Administration and General Management at Welfenakademie in Braunschweig, Germany.
Accomplishments: I originally worked in the Fashion Industry and transitioned into CE during my first job in the U.S., working as a Senior Product Manager at Curacao. One of the things I'm proud of during my time in that position is when I, along with my IT team, implemented a new compensation structure in order to increase the sales associates’ net pay. We also restructured the accessory lineup in the stores and focused on sales training to sell more cellphone accessories. These strategies increased Sprint activations by 300% YoY 2011/2012 and boosted accessory attach rate from 13% - 21% within one month. When I moved on to work for Trident Case, starting as an account executive and then being promoted to Director of European Sales, I was lucky I got to travel the world and learn a lot about the international CE business. I'm mostly proud of growing their international reach and name brand due to signing on new distributors and customers around the world. After gaining knowledge in Purchasing, Product Management and Sales, I moved to Ingram Micro as a Vendor Business Manager and have since been promoted to a Senior Vendor Business Manager. I have been with Ingram Micro for over 5 years. I’m incredibly thankful for everything I’ve learned and I’m still learning each and every day being with Ingram. I’m mostly proud of being able to take on declining vendors and exponentially growing their business YoY, which I have done with multiple vendors. I have streamlined and overhauled a variety of processes, leading to growth in business within almost all vendors I manage. I’m proud of working for such an amazing organization and what I value most are the people I get to work with each and every day, and all their help and support they give me.
What I Like Best About My Job: The people I get to work with every day.
What I like Least About My Job: The coffee.
Pastime/Hobby: Beach volleyball and golf
Best Concert: Billy Joel and Phil Collins
My Hero, and Why: My family are my heroes because of their constant support, love and guidance.
Favorite CE Product: Cutting-edge gadgets.
If You Could be Anyplace Right Now, Where Would it Be and What Would You Be Doing?: Back-in-time with my Omi (grandmother), drinking an ice cold Radeberger German lager beer in her backyard on a warm summer’s day.
What Makes You Believe the CE Industry Will Thrive in the Next 5 Years: I believe the CE industry is primed to grow and thrive for the next 5 years and beyond! Two major reasons being: 1) Some of the best and brightest minds are contained within our industry. The resulting technologies, companies, and innovations will help ensure growth in both intrigue, and demand, for years to come. 2) The core market for CE products continues to get younger, more educated, and more reliant on CE, creating an excellent growth opportunity for all within our industry.