Early this year, Silke Frank, the longtime face of the f-cell trade show, left event organizer Peter Sauber Agentur Messen und Kongresse and went on to found Mission Hydrogen in nearby Winnenden on March 1. She had been with Peter Sauber Agentur since 2003 and worked her way up the ladder to become owner and founder Peter Sauber’s right-hand woman who oversaw day-to-day operations at the company. In that time, she had, for many years, a decisive influence on how the f-cell show held in Stuttgart was run.
Because of this, Frank was believed to be the one who would eventually succeed him. In February, however, she and Sauber parted ways over differences in their vision for the company’s future. Sauber told H2-international that her leaving was “naturally a big loss” but that the f-cell show would continue. However, in late March, Sandra Bilz, who had worked for the business for seven years, left as well. This means Evelyn Hettich is now in charge of the symposium in Stuttgart.
Silke Frank told H2-international she intended to keep doing what a show, conference and event manager was best at and that was connecting people, in her case in the hydrogen and fuel cell sector. The chief executive of Ulm-based Wenger Engineering, David Wenger, wrote about the startup in March: ”Mission Hydrogen’s aim is to support, promote and enable the hydrogen society long term.“ The company markets itself as an independent partner to those who want to grow and strengthen the hydrogen and fuel cell community. It is offering consulting services to industry stakeholders and has also been planning to launch new events together with other hydrogen and fuel cell organizations.
Peter Sauber Agentur and Mission Hydrogen had both partnered with scientific institutions located in different German states to bid on hosting the 23rd World Hydrogen Energy Conference 2022 in Germany before it was announced that the WHEC would be postponed by two years because of the Covid-19 virus outbreak. As the next conference will reportedly be held from June 26 to 30, 2022, in Istanbul, it is now entirely unclear when the event will take place in Germany again.