ATG US

Jill Lowe
Vice President, Sears Business Team

What I do @ ATG
I am responsible for our relationship with Sears.  I manage sales functions for the company’s various channels, including Sears’ mall stores, hardware stores, Kmart hometown stores, online, catalog, industrial, military, and repair and outlet centers.

Where I got my start
I have a business administration degree with a marketing concentration from the University of Illinois.  After college, I landed a sales position with GE Lighting and held various sales roles within the organization. From there, I joined Newell Rubbermaid, where I became the director of sales for the hardware channel and worked closely with Ace and True Value Hardware. When one of the executives I worked with at Newell Rubbermaid went to Apex Tool Group and reached out to me to help run the Sears business, I couldn't say no.
 
A day in my life
I manage a team of four professionals who handle the Craftsman Brand and Apex national hand tool brands sold into the various channels of Sears and I personally oversee the Sears and Kmart portion of the business.  The customer service department for the Sears account also reports to my group. We get involved in customer research, new product development and marketing. This is so much more than a typical sales job. I am proud to say that we are true partners with Sears and together we create solutions that help grow both of our businesses.
 
What I would tell a prospective associate
At Apex Tool Group, you are given freedom to make important decisions in order to meet or exceed your customers' expectations for quality, value and innovation. Customers come first. Everyone here is very dedicated and passionate about what they do.  I can honestly say that I love coming to work each day – I have a great team to work with both internally and with my customer Sears.
Cindy Sachse
Director, Human Resources
What I do @ ATG
As a Human Resources Director with ATG, I partner with the North America Hand Tool Commercial team and support more than 300 sales, marketing, and product development associates.  My primary focus is to align the organization and resources to support and drive strategic initiatives. I also provide support for corporate functions including information technology, legal, finance and human resources.  
 
In a fast-paced workplace, change is critical – and constant.  In my role, I help deploy and support that change. The most successful companies implement new ideas effectively by balancing discipline with the ability to be nimble. I see that balance in practice in ATG with our focus on policy deployment and continual improvement. 
 
Where I got my start
My first job was as a legal secretary with a law firm, where I learned the value of being thoughtful and thorough. My career path moved to human resources, where I found my calling. I learned that people are truly the differentiating factor in any successful organization.
 
Before joining ATG, I was the director of human relations for a leading, global consumer products company. Throughout my career, I’ve had several great mentors who really invested in my development, and I’m thankful for the wisdom and support they shared.  Much of what I learned from mentors is still applicable today, such as having the mindset that you interview for your next job every day and therefore it’s important to always be aware of your attitude and actions. Another important lesson learned was to go beyond what’s asked of you each and every day. 
 
A day in my life
Working in HR is varied and exciting. I’m fortunate to be working with a team of best-in-class HR professionals. We are in the process of defining many of our programs to empower our associates to achieve their full career potential. It’s exciting to be part of a growing company in the midst of developing its culture.
 
What I would tell a prospective associate?
There is a wealth of talent throughout ATG. Here, folks are willing to work together, lend a hand and welcome new associates warmly. Your co-workers are always the differentiator, and ATG has great, knowledgeable people!
 
If you are a creative, independent thinker who wants to be a valuable contributor at an industry-leading company, ATG may be the place for you!
Breno Augusto Nogueira
Marketing Director
What I do @ ATG
I am responsible for all aspects of marketing for Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Chile, Uruguay and Bolivia. That includes pricing, trade marketing, marketing communications and product development for the ten hand tool brands we sell in those countries. Among our top sellers are Belzer®, SATA®, Nicholson® and K&F®.
 
Where I got my start
After receiving a bachelor's degree in economics, I joined Fiat Group´s global leadership program, which gave me an opportunity to live in Italy, the United States and Mexico. My responsibilities ranged from human resources to finance as a business unit controller. It was a great experience, but I always dreamed of pursuing a master of business administration degree in the United States and better understanding other aspects of business. I chose Duke University because of its focus on international management and teamwork. While studying there, I took a summer internship at Cooper Tools and was offered a full-time position, which I accepted as soon as I graduated in 2010. At that point, Cooper and Danaher Tool Group had just merged to become Apex Tool Group.
 
A day in my life
The level of autonomy I have is very high, which expedites the implementation of new ideas. I am empowered to judge whether a local solution is more appropriate than global programs that the company has to offer. For example, I recently saw an opportunity to develop a new sales rebate package that is unique to the Brazilian market. When I told the CEO about it, he said, "The only way we'll find out if it will work is to do it fast." It literally took me a couple of phone calls and a few days to make it happen. We've seen significant top-line growth as a result.
 
What I would tell a prospective associate?
ATG is a company that respects its associates and offers constant challenges. We are also a global company with a strong collaborative spirit that allows you to easily access colleagues outside your country to get their perspective on a project. There are no boundaries when it comes to what we can accomplish. This philosophy is what allows us to grow through innovation.
Andreas Kowol
General Manager

What I do @ ATG
With oversight of our power tool plants throughout Europe, my team and I are responsible for sales, operations, supply chain management, finance, engineering, and human resources. Our facilities in Germany, Hungary and France manufacture tools for customers in the aerospace, motor vehicle and industrial sectors. The Apex Tool Group brands we produce include Cleco®, DGD®, Recoules® and Quackenbush®.

Where I got my start
My first job in manufacturing was at a paper company that made packaging for the food and beverage industry. From there, I went to work for a shoe company as a key account manager. In this position, I learned the importance of the connection between sales and manufacturing. I often traveled to our production plants in Poland to speed up the manufacturing process so my customers would receive their purchases on time. A decade later, after taking on roles in operations and information technology, I decided to make the leap to Cooper Tools (now ATG). I have a master of business administration degree.
 
A day in my life
We are a global team, not just locations in different countries. I often collaborate with my colleagues in other countries to create greater efficiencies. For example, we installed a new production machine in Germany and my counterparts in the United States decided they wanted to buy the same machine so we can share programming and capacity. Now we're able to maximize production in order to put top-quality innovations into the hands of our customers.
 
What I would tell a prospective associate?
When it comes to operations at ATG, we don’t believe in going on “auto pilot.” If you're willing to learn and stretch yourself every day, then this is the perfect environment for you. It's demanding, but it's also a lot of fun. You will be rewarded for your successes. We want people with entrepreneurial ideas and a willingness to reach higher than they thought they could.
 

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