About us

The makers behind the Brand Growth Inspiration blog are a group of European senior brand & retail managers who have teamed up to share some of their studies & experience from working with brands across the globe. The team members’ expertise ranges from operational to strategic subjects, but they are united in working on growth and performance of well known lifestyle brands, as managers, coaches, consultants or entrepreneurs. Browse the map below to learn about their international experiences.


heike-sketch-lighter Heike Blank

A light weight, highly functional suitcase is Heike’s most important accessory. She has spent 20+ years of her professional life travelling for brand growth consulting and lived in Berlin, Düsseldorf, Antwerp, Würzburg and in what some say is Italy’s most northern city – Munich. Working on multi-year projects allowed her to enjoy project life in the beautiful capital of Slovenia and in St. Petersburg. All her travels have been combined with helping brands to grow into new markets and to cope with new market requirements. See more about Heike here.

isabell-sketchIsabell Guidastri

Isabell has lived, studied and worked in Mannheim and Düsseldorf. For the majority of her more than 20 years of professional life she has supported well-known brands and retailers in the international fashion and cosmetic businesses on a variety of matters. Nowadays she travels virtually around the globe, figuring out the most attractive markets to allow brands to explore their growth potential. Life brought her to Modena (Italy), home of fast cars and slow food, where she now lives. Multilingual with an international mind-set, she commutes regularly between Baden-Baden and Italy, enjoying the best of both countries. See more about Isabell here.

alexander-sketch Alexander von Keyserlingk

Alexander lived in Berlin until his thirties and as a buyer for a luxury fashion retailer, he has travelled all over Europe throughout his career. Later he became head of retail & expansion for two German multichannel brands and moved to the Ruhr Area in north west Germany. Having delivered store expansion in retail for some years, Alexander started consulting brands in creating store and expansion strategies, with a strong focus on uniqueness. See more about Alexander here.


Guido Schild

Guido has lived most of his 30+ business years in Germany, but probably spends 50% of his work life abroad. Home for him and his family is Düsseldorf, Germany, after stop-overs in Hong Kong and New York. More recently he has worked for retailers and brands from Finland to Spain, with project & interim tasks in Asia & the Middle East. If it is not work, he loves to travel, with Laos and Oman being his latest favourite countries. See more about Guido here.

This blog wouldn’t be successful without the support team:

Nicole Shephard - Editor Nicole Shephard

Nicole is a freelance researcher, writer, and editor. She’s originally from the UK, where she last worked in the Higher Education sector. Now based in lovely Berlin, she likes to help authors tell better stories through words and data.


katja-sketh-lighter-vs02Katja Wagner

Katja spent her early years in Germany before she moved to Stockholm in Sweden, to work as a sales controller for a global leasing company. After she returned to Germany, it only took a few years before she and her husband moved their family to Brazil. The local experience and beauty of South America inspired her to change career paths and she now takes care of the online marketing for this blog. For the time being, she’s back in Germany, but who knows?

Feel free to contact any of the colleagues for a call, Skype, or personal meeting if travels find you in similar locations..

Your Brand Growth Inspiration Team