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Teammate Spotlight: Koen van Gestel

Have you ever wondered what it takes to empower bakery operators or bakery teams? We pondered this same question and discovered a team built on diversity of thought and the collaboration of various life experiences is the formula for a winning team. Our teammate spotlight blog is the corner of our site where we highlight our team, what inspires them, and what they enjoy about working at AMF. Keep reading to learn more about Koen van Gestel, AMF EMEA Applications Engineering Coordinator and Area Sales Manager at AMF Europe. 

How long have you been at AMF Europe, and what is your role?

I have been at AMF since August 23, 2015. I was hired as an Area Sales Manager for Eastern Europe. Early on, during my onboarding at AMF Richmond, I was assigned the Africa region. (Some call me “Mr. Africa.”) Since then, my focus market has been Africa. I have also taken on the role of Application Engineering Coordinator for the EMEA-AP region.

What gets you excited about AMF?

I was born into a family filled with bakers. My grandpa owned a bakery, and my uncle does too. So I grew up with baking in my veins. From 15 until I was 24, I worked in bread bakeries as a Master Baker. I get very excited about AMF because I have always had a genuine interest in our offerings. Being able to visit customers all over Africa and share the AMF story with enthusiasm and passion is what I love most! I get the utmost satisfaction watching AMF grow within the Africa region and playing a part in AMF getting the market recognition we deserve. I love the collaboration between myself and my teammates. I enjoy working closely with my friends all over the company making sure that we walk the road to success together. I like to support teammates and share what I know to make others successful. AMF is a big company, but it feels like a small company with short lines of communication to teammates and management, which I appreciate.

What unique experiences can you share with us?

My travels throughout Africa have been unique. I love Africa. Africa is a colorful continent with great people, and I couldn’t be happier with my assignment there. My wife and I had our honeymoon in The Gambia, a small country in West Africa. We wanted to share a part of our life with the people there and brought many items to share with the local people. When sharing even the simplest things, like a pencil, the people were very grateful. We were invited to people’s homes and to play football with the kids. It was a truly unique experience and made us appreciate everything we have.

What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

I love playing soccer and creating special calculation tools within Excel. I like to make time for my family and friends. I enjoy going out for dinner and drinks, and when I go on vacation, I make sure it’s an active one. Spending lazy days is not for me.