DER Touristik appoints former Peakwork tech boss as chief digital officer

DER Touristik appoints former Peakwork tech boss as chief digital officer

Joao Gonzago will oversee group-wide digitization at the Kuoni parent  

Kuoni parent DER Touristik has appointed an experienced digitisation expert as its new chief digital officer.

Joao Gonzago will take up the role on May 16 succeeding Dr Dirk Tietz, who left the company in September 2020.

He will be responsible for group-wide digitalisation of the European travel company that operates in 16 countries.

Gonzago will head an international team and join the Group’s international management board. He will report directly to DER Touristik Group chief executive Sören Hartmann.

Hartmann said: "We are delighted about having been able to recruit Joao Gonzaga, a highly experienced digitalisation expert. Following two years of pandemic, we see the travel market rising strongly. 

“We want to harness this momentum to drive the Group’s digital transformation. With his international profile and longstanding experience in developing digital strategies, Joao Gonzaga will help DER Touristik Group to become more agile and customer-centric in the future and to drive digital innovation.”

Gonzaga’s responsibilities will cover harmonising the group’s IT infrastructures as well as developing new digital services for partners and customers linked to the firm’s booking systems.

Gonzaga said: "Digitalisation has become one of the most important innovation drivers for companies and I very much look forward to spearheading this effort at DER Touristik Group. 

“As a strong team of international experts in technology and digitalisation, we will dovetail digitalisation across regions and will jointly launch new customer-friendly solutions.”

Gonzaga is a graduate in information and communications engineering and is experienced in developing and managing digital transformation projects. 

After three years as chief product and technology officer for the software specialist Peakwork, Gonzaga most recently worked for the customer engagement platform Braze in EMEA.

He began his career as a system and solution specialist at Vodafone D2 in Germany before joining Ericsson in Sweden as business solutions manager and then moving on to the tech start-up scene in 2000. 

As co-founder of conVISUAL (renamed mVise) and later Kyntal, he worked in the US for seven years. 

In 2014, Gonzaga returned to Germany as chief technology officer for Swyx Solutions AG (renamed Enreach) where he led the company's software development and established agile development processes. 

From 2016, he served as chief product and innovation officer (CPO) for Swyx Solutions before joining Peakwork as chief product and technology Officer in 2017. 

During his time at Peakwork, he developed the product strategy and led the agile transformation of the specialist travel industry software company.