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Management & Supervisory Board

Management Board

Claus Sauter

Founder and CEO


Claus Sauter (* 1966), founder of VERBIO AG, has also been its CEO since May 2006. He is responsible for strategic business development, sales and marketing, finance and accounting, the press and public relations, investor relations and legal affairs. After graduating in economics and social sciences from the University of Augsburg, in 1990 he took charge of the family wholesale business, Alois Sauter Landesprodukten-Grosshandlung GmbH & Co. KG, in the Bavarian town of Obenhausen. Claus Sauter subsequently became the managing partner, CEO and shareholder of a number of companies set up by him in Bavaria, Saxony-Anhalt, Brandenburg and Switzerland.

Prof. Dr. Oliver Lüdtke

COO Bioethanol/Biomethane

Prof. Dr. Oliver Lüdtke (* 1965), who has a doctorate in engineering, has been COO Bioethanol/Biomethane at VERBIO AG since May 2011. His responsibilities include R&D, production and project development in the bioethanol and biomethane segment. He is also in charge of data protection, controlling and risk management. The current international projects of VERBIO in India and the USA are largely led and controlled by Prof. Dr. Lüdtke.

Oliver Lüdtke graduated in engineering from the University of Hanover in 1993, and completed his doctorate in 1996 at the Chemical Institute of the GKSS Research Centre in Geesthacht. From 1997 until 2000 he was engineering project manager at Hoechst AG, Frankfurt, after which he joined chemical company Celanese until 2005, where he performed various managerial roles in production and trained as a Six Sigma Black Belt. From 2005–07, Prof. Dr. Lüdtke was site manager of the Japanese chemical company Polyplastics in Oberhausen, and also took his MBA. At the beginning of 2008 Prof. Dr. Lüdtke became head of the segment Bioethanol/Biomethane of VERBIO AG.

Theodor Niesmann

COO Biodiesel, Plant Engineering and HR

Qualified engineer Theodor Niesmann (* 1967) has been COO Biodiesel and Plant Engineering since May 2011. In addition he is responsible for Human Resources and IT since July 2014. He is responsible for biodiesel production, R&D in biodiesel, the planning, construction and start-up of investment projects, and human resources, quality Management, industrial safety and IT at VERBIO AG. Abroad, the VERBIO biodiesel plant in Canada reports to Mr. Niesmann.

As of 1996, Theodor Niesmann worked in various companies as a project engineer and project manager on the planning and construction of chemical and energy plants. In doing so, he gained extensive experience in especially the building and operation of plants for processing vegetable oil and oleochemical production. In 2000 he joined VERBIO Diesel Bitterfeld as project manager. From 2004–07 he was CEO of VERBIO Diesel Schwedt (VDS), where he headed the plant's construction and operation. Since 2007, Theodore Niesmann has been in charge of biodiesel segment as a whole and also set up the Department of Plant Engineering, which he now heads.


Bernd Sauter

COO Procurement and Logistics

With a background in wholesale and foreign trade, Bernd Sauter (*1969) has been COO Procurement and Logistics at VERBIO AG since November 2010. As such, he is responsible for purchasing raw materials, transportation and logistics, business development, and facility and fleet management.

After heading leasing company Sauter Verpachtungsgesellschaft Zörbig as of 1997, in 2000 he was appointed CEO of both Alois Sauter Landesprodukten GmbH & Co. KG and Autokontor Bayern GmbH, positions he still holds. At VERBIO AG, Bernd Sauter is also responsible for the global activities in the field of raw material collection and logistics, which the VERBIO subsidiaries carry out in the agricultural and logistics segment.

Stefan Schreiber

COO VERBIO North America

Stefan Schreiber (* 1969) has been employed with VERBIO since 2017. He joined as Head of Business Development before becoming a Board Member on 1st July, 2020 heading the North American Business Unit from now on. He is responsible for purchase of raw material, sales, human resources as well as finance and accounting in North American branches. Furthermore, Stefan Schreiber represents VERBIO at German Biofuels Association (Biokraftstoffverband VDB) in his position as President of the VDB and at the European Biodiesel Board. After graduating in Economics at Saarland University in 1996 he has been employed with Cargill for twenty years holding various management positions in Germany and abroad dealing with sales and processing of biodiesel, grain and oilseeds.

Supervisory Board

Alexander von Witzleben

Chairman of the Supervisory Board
Member of the Supervisory Board since 2006

education / academic career

Study of Economics and Business Administration at the University of Passau

professional background

Several years of leading and general management positions in various companies, such as

Franz Haniel & Cie. GmbH in Duisburg, Jenoptik AG Jena,
KPMG Deutsche Treuhand Gesellschaft in München

Currently holding various management positions and mandates in supervisory bodies, including Arbonia Management AG in Arbon, Feintool International Holding AG in Lyss, Siegwerk Druckfarben AG & Co. KGaA in Siegburg, PVA TePla AG in Wettenberg, Artemis Holding AG in Aarburg, KAEFER Isoliertechnik GmbH & Co. KG in Bremen

Ulrike Krämer

Deputy Chair of the Supervisory Board
Member of the Supervisory Board since June 2010

education / academic career

Studied industrial engineering at the Offenburg University of Applied Sciences (D) with a degree in industrial engineering (FH)

professional background

After working as a partner and managing director of M&K Treuhand GmbH in Ludwigsburg, she has worked as an auditor and tax advisor in individual companies since 2014.

Dr. Klaus Niemann

Member of the Supervisory Board
since January 2021


education / academic career

Study of Chemistry at the Westphalian Wilhelms University, Münster before graduating to Dr. rer. nat. at the Max Planck Institute for Coal Research, Mülheim a. d. Ruhr

professional background

Several years of leading and general management positions in various companies, such as

Ruhröl Raffinerie in Gelsenkirchen, TNK-BP in Moskau, PCK Raffinerie GmbH in Schwedt/Oder, Chemiepark Münchsmünster