Merlin Koene (47) will head the communications of German media company ProSiebensat.1 Group as Executive Vice President and Corporate Spokesman from October 1, 2017.
Koene is taking over the responsibility from Ralf Peter Gierig, Deputy Group CFO, Executive Vice President Group Finance & Investor Relations, who has been heading the department on an interim basis since end of April 2017 following the departure of Julian Geist who held the position since 2009.
Koene will report directly to ProSiebenSat.1 CEO Thomas Ebeling. He started his professional career as a journalist, including working as a reporter for CNN, 3sat, ORF and Spiegel TV. As the head of Reuters Business TV, he regularly reported to camera on economic matters for BBC World and n-tv.
After working at global strategic communications consultancy CNC, Koene moved into the field of corporate communications. In the last eight years, he worked at Unilever, most recently as Director of Sustainable Business & Communications and member of the management board, and was responsible for external and internal communications as well as public affairs in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Last year, Koene headed global media relations and financial communications on an interim basis for Unilever in London and was also jointly responsible for the digital communications strategy.
Koene will be supported in his work at ProSiebenSat.1 by Stefanie Rupp-Menedetter (36), who started as Deputy Corporate Spokeswoman on July 15, 2017 and heads corporate and financial communications. Rupp-Menedetter was previously Head of Communications at Allianz Capital Partners.