Advisory Board

Prof. Dr. Christoph Schalast


Born in 1960, Prof. Dr. Schalast studied law and political science in Gießen, Frankfurt am Main and Lausanne. He completed the legal traineeship with stations at Rasor and Schiedermair (now Linklaters), the European Parliament and the Real Estate Office of the City of Frankfurt am Main and participated in the postgraduate courses Droit Comparé/comparative law in Strasbourg and European integration at the Europa Institute in Saarbrücken. After his bar admission, he specialised in the field of M&A, initially with Albert Flad & Schloßhan (now Mayer Brown), then by founding in 1995 the law firm Schalast & Partner with a focus on M&A/banking and capital market law as well as telecommunications/media/technology. Since the 1990s Prof. Dr. Schalast has been advising governments in Eastern Europe on economic reform. In this function, he was a member of numerous legislative commissions, particularly in Southeastern Europe. Furthermore, he has also been an expert on German legislative projects, banking and capital market law especially. In 1997, Prof. Dr. Schalast was appointed to the professorship for economic administration and European law at the University of Applied Sciences in Wismar. In 2002 he became professor at the Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, where he initiated the Master of Mergers & Acquisitions, of which he is still the academic director today. At the Frankfurt School, he established the research area Non-Performing Loans and is responsible for the NPL Forum, held annually since 2006. In 2008 Prof. Dr. Schalast was nominated Professor of the Year (Economics and Law) and in 2009 he was elected by the students of Frankfurt School Professor of Excellence. He has held teaching positions at the University of Applied Sciences Frankfurt (European law) and the University of Hamburg (telecommunications law). Prof. Dr. Schalast is Chairman of the Supervisory Board of milch & zucker AG and Chairman of the Advisory Board of BKS. As attorney at law and notary, he is specialised in M&A as well as in banking and capital market law.

Ahmet Bilen

Member of the Advisory Board

Ahmet Bilen is responsible for the NPL portfolio of Santander Consumer Bank AG, by defining strategies and managing the processing and selling of secured and unsecured portfolios. In addition, over the past few years, he has supervised and implemented for the Santander Group various projects on outsourcing and carve-out of internal work-out departments in Germany and abroad.

Sandra Förster :

Sandra Förster

Sandra Förster started working with DKB AG in 1997, where she held several management positions in sales, product development, production control as well as in risk and fraud management sector.

Since 2018, Ms. Förster is Head of Credit Consult and Director of DKB AG. She is responsible for processes of all customer groups with regard to early risk identification, intensive and problem loan management, the processing and sale of secured and unsecured NPL portfolios and individual exposures. The risk provision process, integrated in accordance with IFRS 9, plays a significant role here.

In addition, Ms. Förster assisted various DKB projects on digitization, outsourcing and work-out issues.

Janine Hardi

Janine Hardi is Managing Director at FMS-Wertmanagement AöR. Already in 2011, she established the International Commercial Real Estate division of the company after the state takeover of the non-performing HRE portfolios. Previously, she worked for five years for Hudson Advisors Germany, where she was responsible for real estate secured loan portfolios in Germany. Ms. Hardi spent one-and-a-half year in Bermuda, providing investor support for NPL portfolios of Lone Star Funds. Since 2003, Ms. Hardi has been a licensed lawyer advising NPL investors in due diligence and workout phases, among other things. She is also a Digital Transformation Manager, specialized in the business processes in the banking and asset management sector. In 2018, Ms. Hardi was awarded the Bavarian Honorary Office Award for her longstanding board membership in a non-profit organization.

Torsten Kohl

Member of the Advisory Board

Torsten Kohl has more than 20 years of experience in processing non-performing and distressed debt engagements. In his current position as Division Director, Mr. Kohl is responsible for problem loan management at Mainzer Volksbank eG. Prior to this, he was Head of the Special Tasks Credit department, managing the sale of various NPL portfolios. After finishing his bank apprenticeship, Mr. Kohl successfully completed his university studies with a diploma in business administration.

Lars Löffelholz

Member of the Advisory Board

Lars Löffelholz is Head of GRM-Intensive Care Service Center and Managing Director of Commerz Service-Center Intensive GmbH of Commerzbank AG. His prior position there was for several years Head of Workout Domestic and Private Customers Standard. From 2004 to 2008 Mr. Löffelholz was responsible for the distressed loan sales of Eurohypo AG. He is a trained banker and holds a degree in business administration.

Sabine Otte

Member of the Advisory Board

Sabine Otte is Director of Risk Management | Receivables Management Strategy at TARGOBANK AG with more than 20 years of experience in risk management. This includes both the issuance and portfolio management of credit products as well as the processing strategies and operational handling of non-performing and distressed debt engagements in various countries.

In her current position as Director of Receivables Management Strategy, she is responsible for both processing and outsourcing strategies and the sale of secured and unsecured NPL portfolios. As a Global Management Associate at Citigroup she was able to gain experience in various countries. Since 1999, she has been working in leading positions in financial services in Germany, Belgium and Switzerland. Before moving to the banking sector in 1997, Ms. Otte worked for the Bavarian Ministry of State for Federal and European Affairs in Brussels. She holds degrees as European Secretary ESA from the European Secretarial Academy in Vienna, and Master of Business Administration from Texas Christian University, Forth Worth.

Holger Petry

Member of the Advisory Board

Holger Petry is Head of Collections at ING-DiBa and is responsible for processing the bank’s NPL portfolio in retail banking. Before joining ING-DiBa in 2009, he held various management positions in the problem loans management division of the Sparkasse in Nassau.

He has more than 20 years of experience in the NPL sector, managing and being responsible for various transactions of secured and unsecured loan portfolios.

Mr. Petry is a licensed attorney and an in-house lawyer.

Claus Radünz

Member of the Advisory Board

Claus Radünz is since 2013 Executive Director for the Secondary Market Distressed Real Estate at Landesbank Baden-Württemberg. From 1997 to 2004 he was responsible for the restructuring of large international commitments and the development of distressed loan sales for Commerzbank AG in Frankfurt. In 2004 he joined Credit Suisse International, where he expanded the distressed loans trading division for Germany. Between 2008-2009, Mr. Radünz was a member of the Debt Advisory team of Close Brothers (now DC Advisory), responsible for advising on the sale of non-performing loans of banks.

Claus Radünz joined the Landesbank Baden-Württemberg in 2009 and took responsibility for the restructuring of international banks as well as for all secondary market transactions in the distressed area.

Markus Thanner

Member of the Advisory Board

Markus Thanner is Head of Credit Risk Management Corporate and Business Clients at Bankhaus Bauer Privatbank Aktiengesellschaft (BAG). Until 2016, he was Managing Director of the cooperative-oriented HFI Finanz- und Investitions-Beratungsgesellschaft Hamm mbH (HFI). From 2007 to 2012, GFKL Financial Services AG (GFKL) – for which Mr. Thanner had been active since 2004, among others as Managing Director of Proceed Portfolio Services GmbH and of Universal Leasing GmbH – held a share in HFI. Before joining GFKL and BAG, Mr. Thanner worked in the credit sector of today’s HypoVereinsbank AG and VR LEASING AG.

Dr. Marcus Tusch

Member of the Advisory Board

Dr. Marcus Tusch holds a doctorate in law and is a member of the Board of Düsseldorfer Hypothekenbank AG. He is responsible both for the Real Estate Finance and Capital Markets Back Office as well as for the Legal, Risk Controlling and Internal Audit departments. Prior to this, Dr. Tusch held management positions with an internationally active asset management company and managed the credit and legal departments of several banks with international operations.

Dr. Jörg Wulfken

Member of the Advisory Board

Dr. Jörg Wulfken has been an attorney/partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers Legal since 2015. Prior to this, he was responsible for the German offices of the international law firm Mayer Brown LLP. He is a member of the international Partnership Board and the Asian Board of the firm. After finishing his law studies in Hamburg with a doctorate in Konstanz, he worked as a lawyer and partner for an international law firm based in London and Frankfurt and held various operational and management positions for Bankgesellschaft Berlin and Westdeutsche Landesbank in Düsseldorf. Dr. Jörg Wulfken has extensive experience in representing and advising syndicate leaders, arrangers, issuers, lenders and borrowers. The focus of his practice is on transactions with performing and non-performing loan portfolios as well as in the area of securitization. He advised, for example, Lone Star on the first NPL securitization in Germany and the German Federal Financial Market Stabilization Agency (SoFFin) on the establishment of the first German “Bad Bank” as well as other stabilization measures in favour of WestLB AG. Jörg Wulfken is the author of various essays and articles on banking, capital markets and finance law and is a regular speaker at conferences and symposiums. He is co-editor of the book “Performing and Non-Performing Loan Transactions Across the World A Practical Guide” published by Euromoney in 2009 and is also an university lecturer at the Frankfurt School of Finance & Management.



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