Jernej Smisl, Head of Corporate Affairs at Pivovarna Laško Union
Jernej Smisl is the Corporate Affairs Manager at Pivovarna Laško Union, which is a part of the Heineken Company. He is responsible for the fields of strategic communications, strategic connections, and management of sponsorships and donations, as well as development for sustainability. The scope of his responsibilities also include the Union Pub and Union Experience, which together form an unforgettable beer experience in Slovenia’s capital. Mr Smisl is also the chairman of the Supervisory Board of the company SLOPAK d.o.o. Prior to the position of Corporate Affairs Manager he was working at the brewery as the Head of Research and the Head of Corporate Marketing and Public Relations. He started his career in the European Parliament in Brussels where he assumed the role of the Head assistant of the MEP Ms Romana Jordan, PhD and was responsible for the ENVI and ITRE committees.
Jernej acquired a degree in political sciences at the University of Ljubljana. His thesis examined excise duty policies in the EU. In 2017 he also completed the Strategic Marketing course at the Said Business School at University of Oxford, while he also successfully completed HIMDEC – Heineken International Management Excellence Course at the Hult Interational Business School.
During his early years Jernej dedicated a lot of his time to handball, which remained an interest of his until now. Today, he is the president of one of the most successful Slovenian sports clubs, i.e. the Handball Club Celje Pivovarna Laško, which became the European champion in 2004. He is also a member of the Boards of Directors of the Football Club Maribor, which managed to qualify for the UEFA Champions League twice during the recent four years, and he is also a member of the Board of Directors of the SEHA Gazprom League. Due to his involvement with sport and corporate relations Jernej is most proud of the 2018 ESA Sponsorship Awards, which was received in London. Moreover, Mr Smisl was responsible for the management of projects which received several rewards; two of them even received the award for the best regional sponsorship activation, i.e. the Sporto Award, which Jernej and his colleagues received both in 2011 and 2017.