Hamburg Messe und Congress / Michael Zapf

Bernd Aufderheide says farewell to enter retirement

After a 20-year tenure at the top of Hamburg Messe und Congress GmbH (HMC), Bernd Aufderheide (64) will retire at year’s end. In an emotional celebration at the freshly-modernised CCH – Congress Center Hamburg, guests from the business world and politics, along with companions, customers and numerous employees said Goodbye to the long-standing Chief Executive Officer. Hamburg’s First Mayor, Dr Peter Tschentscher, and Hamburg’s State Senator for Economic Affairs, Melanie Leonhard personally thanked Aufderheide for his achievements in support of the city’s trade fair and congress business.


Aufderheide had joined the company on 1 January 2004 as CEO of the CCH – Congress Center Hamburg before being appointed Chairman of the Managing Board. During his career at HMC, Bernd Aufderheide worked with four different Mayors and six Senators for Economic Affairs. Apart from his unwavering efforts to expand the organisation’s trade fair and congress portfolio, the opening of the enlarged exhibition campus in 2008 as well as two expansion and modernisation projects at the CCH – Congress Center Hamburg, in 2007 and from 2017 to 2022 respectively, were milestones of his tenure.

The 2008 financial crisis, various refugee waves and the Covid-19 pandemic had significant impacts on the economic development, challenging HMC to manage these situations jointly with other partners throughout the city. The exhibition halls temporarily accommodated Europe’s largest charity clothing bank and Germany’s largest vaccination centre. 

From 1 January 2024, Uwe Fischer and Heiko M. Stutzinger will head Hamburg Messe und Congress as co-CEOs.


Karsten Broockmann
Company Spokes­man / Direc­tor Corpo­rate Commu­nica­tions
T. +49 40 3569-2090
Karsten Broockmann