Andy Wullmer probably doesn’t need any introduction. After all, you’ll see him at nearly every trade show, networking with industry peers or weighing in on the issues of the day on the numerous panels he speaks on.
With his larger-than-life persona, Wullmer, also known as “The Captain,” leads the show at SGM and its SGMPro division as CEO.
Behind a good leader is always also a good team, so all the new contacts I make at the shows are followed up by my “team, and we later see how we can do business with them.
Wullmer, who arrived at the company six years ago, took the business by the reins after he got the top slot and quickly expanded its service offerings well past the German-speaking countries of Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Wullmer’s first big step was to make SGM a global entity by scooping up more billing partners in other parts of the world and inking exclusive partnership deals with other mobile affiliate programs in other continents.
Then he started up SGMPro.com, the company’s mobile performance network with adult and non-adult products. Today, he’s sailing the SGM ship steadily with 45 employees.
XBIZ World recently sat down with Wullmer to find out more about SGM and “The Captain” in this exclusive Q&A interview.
XBIZ: You started with SexGoesMobile (SGM) in 2010, and now you are its CEO. How did you achieve such remarkable success?
Wullmer: Well, numbers talk. I started as international affiliate manager in 2010 and arrived at the right time. The product was ready, something new and highly profitable. Also, my past experience as a webmaster and SEO expert helped me a lot, because I could bring my whole international network into SexGoesMobile.
XBIZ: Tell us about SGM, what all does it offer and how has it evolved over the years?
Wullmer: SGM started as a mobile affiliate program with mobile products and mobile carrier billing in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The first big step was to make SGM more international, so we started to get more billing partners in other countries and did exclusive partnerships with other mobile affiliate programs in other continents.
In the beginning we had only adult products, but after visiting many mainstream events I decided to bring SGM also into the market and we started SGMPro.com, our mobile performance network with adult and non-adult products. I’m very happy about the development and the company has grown from 15 to 45 employees.
XBIZ: It must be a major advantage in this business to speak English, German and Spanish fluently. Tell us about that.
Wullmer: Not only in this business, the more language you speak the more chances you have in local markets. At SGM we have native speakers in 12 different languages that make it more easy to create products with a local touch, and of course in sales or management it opens more doors. But beside the language it is also important to know about regional taste and behavior.
XBIZ: You are one of the elite professionals who have been honored with an XBIZ Executive Award. How does it feel to be among the top executives in the business?
Wullmer: I’ve won many awards — from Venus Berlin, Erotica Prague, Erotica Brussels, Webmaster Access in Amsterdam, the YNOT Awards in Prague and the GFY Awards in Las Vegas, but in 2015 I won my first XBIZ Executive Award and it was for CEO of the Year. That was really special and one of the highest awards I could win. Also I come from Germany, and to be recognized in L.A. during the XBIZ Show felt special.
XBIZ: Approximately how many shows do you attend per year and how do you make them productive for you and your company?
Wullmer: I visit about 15 adult shows and 10 mainstream shows each year. The first years, of course, the adult shows were very important for me to make SGM, the product, and me be known in the market. It is the same situation I have now at the mainstream shows. The adult shows nowadays are mainly to see my best friends and existing business partners, meet the newbies and see which new trends are in the adult biz.
Behind a good leader is always also a good team, so all the new contacts I make at the shows are followed up by my team, and we later see how we can do business with them. I still like to travel a lot, but of course in the future I need to bring new SGM members also to the shows to make their faces known.
XBIZ: What’s next for SGM and what more do you hope to achieve personally?
Wullmer: SGM will develop more mobile products for adult and mainstream, and we will find new ways to facilitate mobile billing and make our network grow by including more partners worldwide.
We also have some new products in the pipeline I can’t talk about. One problem with successful ideas is that you have others quickly copying your ideas.
I am still hungry for more success, so I want to win more awards, make more money and build up SGM even bigger than now.
My two children are almost 18, so I have the freedom to travel the world to explore new countries and learn more about languages and cultures. Also there are many spots around the globe I want to go diving and experience sharks, whales and other animals.
XBIZ: In your time away from work, what do you like to do?
Wullmer: People call me “The Captain” because I like boats. Sailing, fishing, diving, snorkeling and any kind of water sports are favorites.
I also like the music scene, particularly after my first success producing the hip-hop/house mix “PussyJuice,” which ended up on the German MTV Urban hits charts for 10 weeks. And I am a collector. I collect vodka, Zippos and music —— perfect for the long, cold German wintertime.