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Southeast’s Fourth Forum for German Small & Medium Sized Enterprises

Monday, April 18, 2016 | Hyatt Regency Hotel | Savannah, GA

We are happy to announce that our fourth “German Mittelstand - Southern SME Forum” will be held on April 18, 2016 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Savannah, GA. This business-specific event offers a platform to exchange ideas while building relationships with new business partners, and offers the opportunity to gain insights on innovative business practices, in order to successfully strengthen your presence within the U.S. market.

The all-day business conference will feature engaging keynote speakers followed by informative workshops, panel discussions, and plentiful networking opportunities. Alongside the German Mittelstand - Southern SME Forum, the 2016 GACC South Board of Directors will be elected as part of our Annual General Meeting.

Register Now!

Conference + Evening Reception


Regular: $295


Evening Reception Only


Regular: $150


*Early Bird pricing ends on February 15, 2016

Annual General Meeting Only

Must be member in good standing, no admission fee if attending AGM only!

(Free admission)



Take a look at 2016's Agenda

as of 2/5/2016

Download Agenda SSMEF 2016


7:30am     Breakfast with Keynote:
                Georgia Senator Johnny Isakson
, U.S. Senate (tbc)

8:30am     Workshops to Successfully Strengthen your Presence
                within the U.S. Market

Economic Forecast
We share the results of the 2016 German American Business Outlook (GABO), its possible impacts for the German-American business community of the South, and what economic trends to expect in 2016.

  • Stefanie Jehlitschka, Vice President, GACC South
  • Chris Oakley, Vice President and Regional Executive, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta - Jacksonville Branch

Managing the New Workforce
In today’s workforce, understanding existing and changing motivations, expectations and communication preferences is vital for optimal management and employee productivity. Expand your understanding of the evolution of the workforce and learn how to optimize these changes to successfully manage and retain your existing talent and to recruit new talent.

  • Rolf Wrona, VP Human Resources, Mercedes Benz U.S. International (tbc)

International Tax Update
Tax changes can create both risks and opportunities. This workshop will present important recent tax developments affecting global companies today.

  • Elisa Fay, CPA, Rödl & Partner

9:45am     Coffee Break

10:30am   Panel Discussion: The Future of Mobility
From the manufacturing of lightweight materials and shifts in mobility preferences, to the emergence of autonomous vehicles, the transformation of mobility has far-reaching implications for how we move people and goods. Effecting all industries, transportation technology has the potential to alter current industry structures, business models, value creation, and more.

  • Dave Bernard, CEO & Co-Founder, The Intellection Group
  • Klaus Zellmer, President & CEO, Porsche Cars North America, Inc.
  • CUICAR - Clemson University International Center of Automotive Research (tbc)
  • Novelis Global Research & Technology Center (tbc)
  • Moderator: AGCO (tbc)

12:00pm   Luncheon with Keynote (tba)

1:30pm     Panel Discussion: The Future of Logistics
Economic changes, new technologies and shifts in trade patterns have made their impact on global supply chains. The industry is adopting innovative tools to provide faster, cheaper, sustainable, and more reliable delivery to fulfill customers’ growing demands.

  • William Seward, President of International Business, UPS
  • TBA, Deufol North America
  • Georgia Ports Authority (tbc)
  • Grenzebach Corporation (tbc)
  • Moderator: (tba)

3:00pm     Coffee Break

3:30pm     Annual General Meeting (for Members in good standing only)
                Election of Board of Directors & State of the Chamber Report

5:30pm     Evening Reception (Location: TBC)



This year's Southern SME Forum will be held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Savannah, GA on Monday, April 18, 2016


Hyatt Regency Savannah

2 W. Bay Street Savannah, GA, 31401

Phone: (912) 238-1234
Fax: (912) 944-3678

The GACC South has negotiated a special room rate of
$183 plus applicable taxes and fees for a single/double room valid from April 16 through April 19, 2016
(Room availability at the special rate is on a first-come, first-served basis).

Make your reservation now! Call 1-800-633-7313 
and mention the German American Chamber of Commerce
visit the GACC guest website.


Refer to this information to familiarize yourself with parking options surrounding the hotel.

Phone: (704) 377-0400
Concierge: EXT. 1778

 The Annual General Meeting (AGM) is again part of the German Mittelstand - Southern SME Forum. During the AGM, members in good standing will receive the State of the Chamber report and will be able to elect the 2016 GACC South Board of Directors.

The Annual General Meeting is for members
in good standing only!


To nominate candidates for the Board of Directors, please fill out the Nominating Form.





Britta Lipke

Events Manager

Atlanta, GA

(404) 586-6815
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SSMEF unites representatives from a wide range of industries vital to supporting the business growth and development of modern SMEs. Make sure your company is represented in 2016!