Hess GmbH Licht + Form: Dr.-Ing. (PhD) Ernst Smolka becomes the new Managing Director

- Important step in setting the course for the strategic development of the company

- After a successful stint as Interim Manager Louis van Uden hands over to Dr. Ernst Smolka


Villingen-Schwenningen, 12th May 2017  

Hess GmbH Licht + Form, a leading international manufacturer of designed outdoor luminaires and street furniture with its headquarters in Villingen-Schwenningen, is getting a new leadership – a change which sets the agenda for further positive developments within the company. Dr. Ernst Smolka (53) will be appointed Managing Director of the premium supplier on 1st July 2017 and after a short transition period will succeed Interim Manager Louis van Uden.

Ernst Smolka completed his studies in physics at the University of Karlsruhe and at the Oregon State University in the USA and obtained his doctorate at the Lichttechnisches Institut (Institute of Light Technology) of the Fakultät für Elektrotechnik (Faculty of Electrical Engineering) in Karlsruhe. He brings with him extensive managerial expertise as well as many years of professional experience in the sector. Since the beginning of the 1990s Smolka has held many managerial positions, amongst others as technical director, director of research and development as well as management positions with responsibilities in sales, technical project development, light engineering and also production. Most recently Ernst Smolka was responsible for the German activities of one of the largest businesses in the lighting industry world-wide.   

Pierre van Lamsweerde, CEO of the Nordeon Group said: “We are very happy to have won over Ernst Smolka for Hess. He is a proven expert with many years of expertise both in the sector and in leadership. We are convinced that with him we will be able to pursue our strategic goals “Made in Germany”, “Innovation”, “(Special) Solutions” and also “International Expansion” sustainably and successfully.”

At the same time van Lamsweerde thanks Louis van Uden: “At this point I would especially like to thank Louis van Uden. Thanks to his leadership Hess is permanently back on the road to success. As well as for the excellent quality of his work, I’d like to thank him for his flexibility over timings, as he timed his interim role to fit around Hess’ ideal candidate for the new post-holder. We will be very happy to fall back on him again, if there are vacancies within the Nordeon group in the future.” 

Louis van Uden also has only positive words to say about his successor: “I am sure that with Ernst Smolka we have the very best person for this role. From my point of view, he is the right man at the right time – an absolute expert in the fields of “Smart City” and “Digitalisation”. Exactly what we need to further develop the company dynamically and with a focus on the future amid ever changing surroundings. I’ve very much enjoyed my position at Hess, which was on a temporary basis right from the start. Together we have achieved a lot. We can be very proud of that.”

Ernst Smolka himself is already looking forward to his new function: “Hess is of course very well-known to me owing to my long-standing experience in the lighting sector. Hess stood and stands for something special. I’m looking forward to continuing to develop Hess as a premium supplier. I can see, precisely for Hess, enormous potential in future development – keyword “Smart City”.”

Contact details:

Hess GmbH Licht + Form
Marco Walz
Head of Communications and Marketing
Lantwattenstraße 22
78050 Villingen-Schwenningen
Tel.: +49 (0) 7721 920 475
E-mail: marco.walz@hess.eu

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