The Management Board

The Management Board is responsible for managing the company. In doing so, it is obliged to act in the best interest of the company and undertakes to increase its sustainable enterprise value. The Management Board ensures that all provisions of law are complied with, and endeavours to achieve their compliance throughout Group companies.

The Management Board develops company strategy, coordinates it with the Supervisory
Board, and ensures its implementation. It ensures appropriate and sustainable risk management and risk controlling throughout the company. The Management Board cooperates on the basis of trust with Aareal Bank AG's other executive bodies, and with employee representatives.

Hermann J. Merkens Chairman of the Management Board

Hermann J. Merkens has been Member of the Management Board since 2003 and has been appointed as Chairman of the Management Board in September 2015. He also holds the position of the CFO.

Hermann J. Merkens holds positions in various associations and institutions such as the Association of German Banks as Member of the Management Board and member of the Committee "Banks directly supervised by the ECB".

Already in 1999, he joined Aareal Bank AG (back then DePfa Bank AG) as Head of Division Commercial Property Financing Germany, and was appointed Deputy Member of the Management Board in 2001. He became Deputy Chairman of the Management Board in 2014. Before, Hermann J. Merkens was Director with general authority at Deutsche Interhotel Holding GmbH & Co. KG. His professional career started in 1985 at Deutsche Bank Group.

He was born in 1966 in Aachen, Germany, and graduated from Berlin School of Economics with a diploma in business administration.Curriculum vitae as pdf

Dagmar Knopek Member of the Management Board

Dagmar Knopek has been a Member of the Management Board of Aareal Bank AG since 2013. As Chief Credit Officer she is responsible for Credit Management (CM) (encompassing loan administration and management), Operations (OPS), and the Workout (WO) portfolio.

Dagmar Knopek started working for DePfa Bank AG - Aareal Bank AG's predecessor, as Head of Desk Great Britain in 1999. In 2004, she started heading the Credit Management division for international property financings, before going to New York in 2008 as Chief Credit Officer at Aareal Capital Corporation. From 2010 onwards, she was Head of the CM Division for accompanying the Bank's activities in Europe, the USA and Asia. From 2013 to 2016 Ms Knopek held responsibility for the markets in the Structured Property Financing segment as a Member of the Management Board at Aareal Bank AG. Her professional career started in 1980 at Bayerische Hypotheken- und Wechsel Bank AG.

Dagmar Knopek is banking clerk and was born in Herford in 1958.

Curriculum vitae as pdf


Christiane Kunisch-Wolff Member of the Management Board

Christiane Kunisch-Wolff has been a member of the Management Board of Aareal Bank AG since 15 March 2016. As Chief Risk Officer, she is responsible for Risk Controlling, as well as for Compliance and Regulatory Affairs.

Prior to her arrival at Aareal Bank, she was a member of the Management Board of Westdeutsche Immobilienbank AG ("WestImmo") in Mainz, where she was responsible for accounting and financial reporting, administration and organisation, IT, private customers (portfolio management), as well as the Compliance/Anti-Money Laundering division. Having started her professional career with WestLB in 1993, she was appointed to the Management Board of readybank AG in October 2006; her responsibilities included risk management, finance and controlling, IT, organisation and business process management, together with associated projects, internal audit, as well as the readypartner GmbH subsidiary.

Christiane Kunisch-Wolff was born in 1966; she is a qualified bank clerk, and studied economics at the University of Applied Sciences, Hochschule Niederrhein. In 2006, she obtained a Master's degree in Business Administration (MBA).

Curriculum vitae as pdf


Thomas Ortmanns Member of the Management Board

Thomas Ortmanns has been Member of the Management Board at Aareal Bank AG since 2005. His areas of responsibility comprise the Bank's activities in relation to the housing and property industry in the Consulting/Services business segment as well as the Treasury and IT & Organisation Services divisions.

He holds various offices, for example as the Chairman of the Supervisory Boards at Aareon AG as well as Member of the Management Board at the Association of German Pfandbrief Banks (vdp).

Before, Thomas Ortmanns was managing partner at the Consart Management Consultant GmbH. He started his professional career at the Bayerische Hypotheken- und Wechsel Bank. The native-born Berliner (born 1960) holds a degree in business administration ("Diplom-Kaufmann") from the Technische Universität in Berlin.

Curriculum vitae as pdf


Christof Winkelmann Member of the Management Board

Christof Winkelmann has been Member of the Management Board at Aareal Bank AG since 1 July 2016 and is responsible for the markets in the Structured Property Financing segment.

Prior to this, Christof Winkelmann was Head of the Special Property Finance division of Aareal Bank. He first worked for Aareal Bank from 2000 to 2006, being responsible for the Bank's hotel financing business. He moved to Zurich-based Valartis Bank in 2006, as a Managing Director, returning to Aareal Bank in 2008 as Managing Director Special Property Finance. In this function, he was responsible for the Bank's Special Property Finance business, i.e. financings for hotels, retail and logistics properties. Mr Winkelmann started his career at the Palace Hotel, New York City, and with consultancy firm Arthur Andersen in Frankfurt/Main. 

Christof Winkelmann was born in 1975 and studied Hospitality Management and Business Adminstration at the University of Las Vegas, Nevada. He is a member of the Lodging Industry Investment Council (LIIC), the International Council of Shopping Centres (ICSC Europe) and the Urban Land Institute (ULI Europe), among others.

Curriculum vitae as pdf