About Us

games.nrw represents the interests of the digital games industry in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany’s most populous state, including Rhine-Ruhr metropolitan region, which is the largest metropolitan region in Germany.

Members of games.nrw are developers, publishers, eSports companies and clubs, games-specific service providers and initiatives as well as educational institutions in NRW.

games.nrw is the central contact for politics, media and society in all NRW-related questions about digital games.

The association helps to increase the visibility of the diversity of players and events in the digital games industry in North Rhine-Westphalia, improve the games network in NRW and expand the industry cluster in close cooperation with existing institutions in the state.

Our mission is to make NRW an excellent games location in Germany.

Executive Board

Benedikt Grindel

Benedikt Grindel

Chairperson of the Executive Board

Benedikt is Managing Director of Ubisoft Blue Byte.

Founded in 1988, the studio is now part of the studio network of the globally active Ubisoft Group with three locations.

Over 600 employees develop classic computer and video games in Düsseldorf, Mainz and Berlin.

Benedikt joined Ubisoft in 1998. After 3 years in marketing and business development, he decided to change to game development. As a producer he was in charge of the traditional game brand, The Settlers, and built up the live operation division.

In 2014 he took over the management of Ubisoft Blue Byte.

Benedikt has a degree in mathematics.


Katharina Weiß

Katharina Weiß

Deputy Chairperson of the Executive Board

Katharina Weiß is founder and Creative Director of SilentFuture.

In addition to years of experience in game development, she has extensive knowledge in marketing, especially brand and social media management, economics and media design.


Johannes Brauckmann

Johannes Brauckmann

Member of the Executive Board

Johannes Brauckmann has been active in the games industry for many years, currently in international development.

He is strongly networked with local games players and knows the structures of the gaming market in North Rhine-Westphalia.

With his knowledge and expertise he supports games.nrw especially in local cooperations and in the promotion of upcoming newcomers.


Daniel Dumont

Daniel Dumont

Member of the Executive Board

Daniel Dumont has been working in the games industry since 1996, initially at Ubisoft and from 1998 to 2009 at Ascaron Entertainment.

Since mid-2009 he has been studio manager and creative director of the development studio Gaming Minds Studios in Gütersloh, Germany, which belongs to the Kalypso Media Group.

His experience in the development process of video games and his extensive network of experts and creative people from the industry are valuable resources that he is happy to incorporate into his commitment to games.nrw.


Lena Morano Gerding

Lena Morano Gerding

Member of the Executive Board

Lena Morano Gerding has been working at Flying Sheep Studios since 2019. As Finance Director, she heads the finance and HR department and is primarily responsible for funded projects.

She holds a Master’s degree in Strategic and International Management from TH Deggendorf, with a special focus on cooperation in an intercultural context.

Lena supported games.NRW from 2021 to 2024 as an auditor and is now looking forward to being directly involved in the work of the board.


Advisory Board

Tobias Kopka

Tobias Kopka

Member of the Advisory Board

Tobias Kopka is a passionate program director, facilitator, and people connector in the games industry and affiliated domains. He spearheads some of the finest game developer conferences for more than a decade (Ludicious Zürich Game Festival, Quo Vadis, devcom, Respawn – Gathering of Game Developers), always keen on changing the industry for the better.

Currently, he is Head of Developer Relations at the boutique game developer conferences of Reboot Develop in Croatia and Canada, and working as freelance program director and consultant under his label curatomic. Pro-bono side projects include the European Game Showcase during GDC and #ArtOfCoding, an initiative that brings the Demoscene as the first digital culture onto the lists of UNESCO intangible world cultural heritage.


Dominik Lauf

Dominik Lauf

Member of the Advisory Board

Dominik Lauf is responsible for the development of future concepts and their prototyping in the innovation area of Deutsche Telekom AG. This area included, among others, the 2018-2021 active CloudGaming Platform “MagentaGaming”. Dominik has also been a business mentor & coach for startups in the entertainment & gaming sector since 2017 and runs a podcast called “DieStrategen” on the topic of strategy games.


Prior to 2017, Dominik was responsible for many years in marketing, sales and as an investment manager for management consulting as well as StartUp/Team coaching on innovation projects.


His expertise as a mentor, coach and investment manager as well as his market knowledge and contacts are also available to the games.nrw network.


Karsten Lehmann

Karsten Lehmann

Member of the Advisory Board

Karsten Lehmann studied communication science, marketing and political science in Essen.

He has been working in the games industry for about 20 years and knows the daily work of the teams on the publishing and production side of digital games.

Karsten worked for many years in public relations on communication strategies that cover the entire product life cycle of games.

As Public Affairs Director at Ubisoft Blue Byte, he and his team now coordinate the initiatives of the German Ubisoft development studios to strengthen the local games ecosystem.

Karsten organized the foundation of games.nrw e.V. and is now an advisory board member.


Martin Lorber

Martin Lorber

Member of the Advisory Board

Martin Lorber is Public Policy Lead and Youth Protection Officer at Electronic Arts. He has been working in the computer games industry since 2004.


Daniel Schemann

Daniel Schemann

Member of the Advisory Board

Daniel Schemann, managing director and founder of SilentFuture.

His decades of experience in the field of game development make him a valued business partner.


Office

Denise Gühnemann

Denise Gühnemann

project manager

Denise is project manager at games.nrw and your contact person for all association matters: member services, events & activities, communication, cooperations.

Before joining games.nrw, she worked for a long time in the project management of Next Level – Festival for Games and got to know numerous players in the games industry. She also worked for the Grimme Institute (focus on “Games and Society”), the Fachstelle für Jugendmedienkultur NRW and the Institut für Medienforschung und Medienpädagogik der TH Köln.