DS Group - A company of The Social Chain AG
Dr. Georg Kofler designated new CEO of The Social Chain AG
  • Dr. Georg Kofler will take over as new CEO of The Social Chain AG as of January 1st, 2023
  • Current CEO Wanja S. Oberhof becomes President of Social Chain US Inc. and focuses on the expansion of the US business.
  • Ralf Dümmel takes over sole management of DS Group.
  • Costs are reduced by 30 percent: through synergies, cost cuttings and a more efficient organizational structure
  • Successful refinancing: working capital financing of EUR 125 million secured for three years
  • Dr. Georg Kofler declares subordination, creating EUR 36 million of additional equity

Berlin, November 16th, 2022. Dr. Georg Kofler will take over as CEO of The Social Chain AG as of January 1st, 2023. The current CEO, Wanja S. Oberhof, will chair the management of the US business as President of Social Chain US Inc and will be additionally responsible for all Group M&A activities. Ralf Dümmel will fully focus on the sole management of the DS Group with immediate effect and will therefore resign from his position as management board member.

In its new structure, The Social Chain AG is managed by Dr. Georg Kofler as CEO and Andreas Schneider as CFO.
Henrike Luszick and Henning Giesecke will continue to serve as members of the Supervisory Board of The Social Chain AG. A third member of the Supervisory Board will be announced shortly.

Cost reduction of 30 percent

The Social Chain AG is cutting its costs by 30 percent. The cost reduction will have full effect in the 2023 financial year: It will be achieved through synergies, significant savings in HR and structural costs and more efficient organizational structures throughout the group. With these changes, The Social Chain AG is responding to the challenging market environment and thereby ensuring its entrepreneurial options for the future.

Financing structure of Social Chain AG significantly improved:
Working Capital financing of EUR 125 million secured by a bank consortium for three years. EUR 36 million of additional economic equity generated. EUR 25 million acquisition loan repaid.

DS Group, a 100% subsidiary of The Social Chain AG, successfully closed a working capital facility of EUR 125 million with a bank consortium. The credit facility has an initial fixed term of three years with the contractual options to prolong.

In addition, Dr. Georg Kofler contributes to the company's equity by subordinating shareholder loans totaling EUR 36 million.

Furthermore, The Social Chain AG repaid EUR 25 million of the existing acquisition loan for the purchase of DS Group.
As a result, The Social Chain AG significantly improved its financing structure: Overall, current financial liabilities were reduced from EUR 197 million to EUR 35 million. Non-current financial liabilities increased from EUR 114 million to EUR 233 million. In total EUR 44 million financial debt has been repaid, while the current financial liabilities have been reduced by EUR 162 million.

[1] These are ACTUAL figures as of 31.12.2021 compared to the reported numbers of 30.09.2022, the latter assuming full closing of the credit facility that was signed on 10.10.2022.

„As an entrepreneur and anchor shareholder, I am committed to the business model of The Social Chain AG. As we all know the current market environment is really challenging. Many times in my professional career I have experienced and proven that under the pressure of crises new business opportunities arise. Our team, our business partners and our shareholders can be assured that I will bring in all my entrepreneurial energy and experience to lead the Social Chain AG into a profitable and sustainable future.”

Dr. Georg Kofler

“As co-founder of The Social Chain AG, it was always my intention to build an international company. I realized that only a crystal clear focus on internationalization can lead to success, which I could not execute in my role as CEO. I am excited that my long-time business partner Dr. Georg Kofler is taking over the position of CEO, enabling me to fully focus on the expansion of the international business.”

Wanja S. Oberhof

“My core strength is the direct operational business: rolling up my sleeves, sourcing products, driving innovations and orchestrating and executing the omnichannel sales of our innovative product portfolio - that's my life. The new structure of the Management Board allows me to dedicate all my energy to reach the maximum impact on sales and product innovation.”

Ralf Dümmel

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About The Social Chain AG: Social Commerce on a Global Scale

We are pioneers of social commerce and social media is our marketplace. As a house of entrepreneurs, we are reshaping the world of brands and commerce and turning wishes and ideas into products with our concentrated sales power. We understand how to develop our own brands and products into direct-to-consumer brands with the power of social media and how to market them to specific target groups. We offer our entrepreneurs and retail partners an all-round carefree package in-house: from our own product development, legal review, production, quality assurance, marketing and communication to logistics and everything that brands and products need to grow and become successful.

Social Chain AG currently has around 10,000 products in the categories of Food, Home & Living, and Beauty & Fitness as well as successful brands such as LANDMANN, the oldest German barbecue manufacturer, and the Lifestyle brand URBANARA in its range. Social Chain AG brings the products “Digital first – direct to Customer” directly to the customers‘ homes. Plus: Thanks to the excellent retail network of the sales experts, the products are placed in more than 40,000 retail shops – to touch and take away immediately.

The best-known heads of The Social Chain AG are Ralf Dümmel and Dr. Georg Kofler, both investors of the VOX start-up show “Die Höhle der Löwen”. In addition to Ralf Dümmel as Chief Product Officer, Andreas Schneider as Chief Financial Officer and Wanja S. Oberhof as Chief Executive Officer manage the company’s business.

The company has its headquarters in Berlin and around 1,000 employees. Other locations are New York, Manchester, Stapelfeld near Hamburg, London, Los Angeles, and Gallin. The shares of Social Chain AG (WKN: A1YC99) have been listed in the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.

The content of this press release is for information purposes only and does not constitute investment advice or other recommendations pursuant to the German Securities Trading Act by The Social Chain AG or its affiliated companies. The information provided cannot replace investment advice. The information contained in this press release is not to be construed as an assurance of possible price developments and should not be construed as a request to enter into a transaction. The information contained herein does not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to sell securities or rights, or a solicitation to trade in securities or rights. Accordingly, The Social Chain AG and its affiliates make no representations or commitments as to the accuracy, completeness or correctness of the information or opinions contained herein. We assume no liability for direct or indirect damages caused by and/or in connection with the distribution and/or use of this document. The statements correspond to the status at the time of the prepara- tion of this document. They may become obsolete due to future developments without the document being changed.

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