Liftoff Employee Spotlight: Bastian Winterkemper, Sales Lead in Germany

By Nathalie Figueroa | October 23, 2020

Bastian Winterkemper joined Liftoff over three years ago as one of our first hires in London. Now, Bastian leads sales efforts from our newest office in Berlin. When he’s not planning his next big trip (now postponed until at least 2021), catch Bastian enjoying a day sailing with a stubby next to the tinner (as he would say). 

Tell us a little about yourself and how you ended up at Liftoff?

I’m from a small village in Germany called Olfen (partner town of La Grange, Texas!) I had a dream of living in a big city, so I immediately set off to London after graduating from university (M.A. in communication, economics and psychology.) While I was packing my backpack to fly to the UK, a friend called. He asked for support in scaling a Danish travel platform—Cofman—in Italy. As it was winter, I switched plans and moved to Sanremo to hibernate by the beach. Three months became twelve and I learned the basics of online marketing and e-commerce. 

Eventually I jumped on that plane to London and found myself in a small five-person start-up called Glow (one of the first Facebook Marketing Partners), where I met the one and only Kevan Merlehan. During that time, I had already come across Liftoff in a CPA optimization case study.

I pitched myself to Philip Gontier when he was at Twitter, hoping to get leads out of his pockets. Later in early 2017, I bumped into Kevan and Phil at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and the rest was history. 

Tell us a little about your experience of working internationally?

My first international work experience was when I was 14 and in high school. I traveled to Haute-Saône in France for a 2-week internship on “gardening.” I later went to Australia for the typical “year off” to learn English and work my way through various farms picking apples, pears, nashis, strawberries (I gave up after four days!), and also cooked burgers at the Moomba festival in Melbourne. I ended up in Perth knocking on doors to sell “AAPT Smartphone chat” in a Yves Saint Laurent suit I bought for 12 bucks in a Salvation Army Store. 

During university, I went to Mexico and worked for six months at Volkswagen in Puebla under the Communications department. And after university, things evolved. Before Liftoff, I worked for almost two years in Singapore with Glow. It was an incredible experience going to China and Korea to meet companies like Tencent, Netease, or Netmarble. In short, most of my career was international to date. Coming back to Germany is a new experience in some ways.

How has Liftoff helped you in your career development?

From the day I joined—three and a half years ago—I had ongoing support from experienced and humble seniors and the most supportive colleagues one could imagine. Liftoff does a fantastic job of hiring talented individuals while maintaining Liftoff’s DNA during times of tremendous growth. I believe every single employee at Liftoff offers something I can learn from. Ultimately, I am grateful for the recent opportunity to set up the Berlin office, which hopefully unlocks the next development stage. I will tell you in twelve months how things go. 

What’s the coolest thing about your job?

Meeting our clients in-person to create and foster lasting relationships. In short: flip some pints together and catch-up.

What can new members joining the London or Berlin team expect?

To be prepared for heaps of fun. 

Can you share what habits help you be the best version of yourself?

I begin the day with some meditation. And when I spend too many hours by the desk, sports keep me balanced. 

What’s your favorite quote?

“No bird soars too high if he soars with his own wings.”

William Blake

I must give credit to Michael Jordan here. I stole the quote from a poster of him hanging in my room for years.

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