Nikolaus Kirner, Chief Procurement Officer, Thomas Cook Group

Nikolaus Kirner is a seasoned board member and C-level executive with core capability honed from decades of professional business leadership and management advisory, predominantly in the leisure travel sectors. A highly effective commercial tactician and ground-breaking innovator, Nikolaus is adept at setting strategic direction, building culture, identifying talent, developing teams, embedding performance management methodologies, and facilitating growth and transformation in competitive worldwide markets.

With a 15-year track record of outstanding executive leadership success, Nikolaus can point to a background as a global head of transformation and leading procurement and supply chain excellence for a market leading leisure firm, and as a managing director leading cross-functional management teams servicing substantial multinational clients. 

Nikolaus’ skill set has been evidenced in his most recent role as group transformation director with Thomas Cook Group, where he was tasked with transforming the company from a legacy tour operator to a modern, streamlined, customer-focused company. He has been charged with implementing group strategy by rolling out a new operating model across the company, targeted at strengthening core business, simplifying the overall business model, restructuring the cost base and reorganising for growth to deliver substantial EBIT improvement.

His positions include:

Group Transformation Director, Thomas Cook Group plc, 2015-2018

Chief Procurement Officer, Thomas Cook Group plc, 2009-Present

Managing Director, Corporate Service Group GmbH, 2008–2009

Vice President – Corporate Procurement, Thomas Cook AG, 2001–2008

Strategic Procurement Manager Star Alliance, Deutsche Lufthansa AG, 1998-2001

A noted thought leader, Nikolaus contributes articles to international journals and speaker at industry conferences and events. He holds an MBA (Hons) from Friedrich-Alexander University, Germany and completed the European ERASMUS Program (International Relations) with Trinity College, Ireland. He is fluent in German and English and can speak conversational French.

Married with two young sons, Nikolaus enjoys relaxing by playing football, tennis, ice hockey. He regularly goes to the gym, has fun on a motorbike, and can often be seen having a run before work. 

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