Featured Speakers

Sir Alex Ferguson - Former Manchester United Manager

When Sir Alex Ferguson retired in 2013 after 26 years as manager of Manchester United football club, media outlets around the world lauded his legendary career. The New York Times called Sir Alex ‘‘…a candidate for the title of greatest coach, or manager, in history ------ not only in soccer, but in any sport on any continent.’’ As a manager, Sir Alex was often guarded in his public comments, but now, Sir Alex is able to candidly share with audiences his personal views on his leadership and management success and details of his storied career. Sir Alex Ferguson is regarded as one of the most admired and respected managers in the history of football, the world’s most popular sport. Ferguson’s early success as a manager in Scotland attracted an underachieving Manchester United in 1986. Twenty-six years later, Sir Alex had won 38 trophies, including 13 Premier League and two UEFA Champions League titles, making United the most successful club in English football. During his tenure at United as well as earlier years as a manager and player, Sir Alex developed a unique, deliberate and much-analyzed leadership philosophy, which was recently studied by Harvard Business School in a leadership case study focused on his management approach. The consistent success Sir Alex produced, over a period spanning three decades, was the driving force that resulted in Manchester United becoming the most valuable sports franchise in the world. The growing commercialization of football during this same period attracted wealthy investors from all over the world allowing competitive teams to outspend United by staggering proportions. However Sir Alex’s formula for talent development, organizational management, motivation and communication, and his goal of ‘‘building a club rather than a team’’ enabled Manchester United to achieve record-breaking results. Sir Alex was respected by his players because he personally supported their development and fiercely protected them. In return, he expected the highest caliber performance and personal discipline, and he was not afraid to trade or bench players who didn’t live up to expectations. This approach to talent management and his famous youth program produced some of the most decorated players in history. United fans idolize Sir Alex for the trophies he brought their team over 26 years, all delivered with an exciting, entertaining style of play and a never-say-die attitude that produced some astonishing comebacks. Football fans admire Sir Alex for both the length of his tenure at the summit of the game and his legacy of repeatedly building successful teams. Students of leadership and business admire Sir Alex Ferguson for his long-term leadership in a highly competitive global environment. Sir Alex remains on the Manchester United’s board and is now ready to reveal the passion, philosophies and principles that shaped his career. From the qualities required to develop talent to the skills necessary to build, and rebuild, winning teams to the importance of embracing and adapting to change. These are just a few of the management lessons Sir Alex developed over his time as the most successful manager in the history of the world’s most popular sport

James Hogan - President and CEO, Etihad Airways

James Hogan was appointed President and Chief Executive of Etihad Airways on 10 September 2006, bringing more than 30 years of travel industry expertise to the Abu Dhabi-based airline. He has overseen rapid growth of the UAE’s national airline, which now serves 111 passenger and cargo destinations in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Americas operating a fleet of 105 modern environmentally friendly aircraft. In July 2008, he signed one of the largest aircraft orders in history for up to 205 aircraft worth approximately US$43 billion at list prices, to meet the airline’s ambitious long-term growth plans. This was followed in November 2013 with an order for up to 199 aircraft worth US$67 billion to make provision for the airline’s growth up to 2025. CEO Middle East Magazine named him Aviation CEO of the Year in 2008 and Visionary of the Year in 2010. He won the CAPA Airline Executive of the Year 2012 Award at the Centre for Aviation’s global awards for excellence and leadership. At the Airline Strategy Awards presented in London in July 2013, he received the Executive Leadership Award in recognition of his “influence on the aviation industry, outstanding strategic thinking, and innovative direction for growth.” In April 2014, he was inducted into The British Travel and Hospitality Industry Hall of Fame in honour of his “significant part in creating and developing the travel and tourism industry in Britain and globally”. James started his career in 1975 at Ansett Airlines, and subsequently held senior positions with bmi, Hertz, Forte Hotels and Gulf Air. At Hertz, his roles included directorships of the marketing, sales and operations divisions. In 1995, based in London, he joined the executive management committee as Vice President, Marketing & Sales for Europe, Middle East and Africa. In 1997, James became service director for bmi British Midland, leaving in 1998 to join the Granada Group as worldwide sales director, where he sat on the board of Forte Hotels. He returned to bmi in 1999 as chief operating officer. There he was responsible for flight and ground operations, sales and marketing, commercial, cargo, engineering and handling service companies, and was a member of the Board. James moved back to his native Australia in 2001, where he was appointed chief executive of the Tesna consortium, which was created with the aim of acquiring Ansett Airlines from administration, before joining Gulf Air in 2002, where he served as chief executive for four years. James is a fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society and a former non-executive director, and member of the Board’s Audit Committee, of Gallaher Plc and the UBS Industrial Board. In 2010, he served as the Chairman of the Aviation Travel and Tourism Governors at the World Economic Forum. He currently serves as Vice Chairman on the Executive Committee of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) and is a member of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Board of Governors. He serves as Vice Chairman on the Boards of equity partners, airberlin plc, and Jet Airways, and sits on the Board of Virgin Australia.

Richard Keys - Broadcaster

Richard Keys is an English sports presenter, with a career starting in 1976 when he moved initially to London. He has since worked for BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Sky, Talksport, Al Jazeera, Fox Sports, ESPN Star Sports , BeIN Sports; and has presented over 4,500 football matches with Premier League games, World Cup Finals,[1] Champions League Finals, FA Cup Finals, UEFA Finals and League Cup Finals in England and Scotland among them.

Andy Gray - Broadcaster

Andrew Mullen "Andy" Gray is a Scottish retired footballer who played for several clubs in Scotland and England whilst also representing his country. He was the lead football pundit for Sky Sports until January 2011. Gray, along with former Sky Sports anchor Richard Keys, then signed for talkSPORT in February 2011. They now both work for beIN Sports in Doha.

Sarosh Zaiwalla - Senior Partner - Zaiwalla & Co.

Sarosh is the firm’s Senior Partner, overseeing all the firm’s activities. Over the years, he has been Involved in over 1,000 international litigations and arbitrations in the fields of Energy, Maritime and Construction either as solicitor, Counsel, Party-Appointed Arbitrator or Sole Arbitrator. Over his career Sarosh has acted for clients ranging from the President of India, the Government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the Iranian Government to The Bachchan and Gandhi families in India. Sarosh is a former member of the International Court of Arbitration of the ICC, Paris, (1990 – 2002). He is also a CEDR (Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution) Accredited mediator. In 1998, Sarosh was made a Freeman of The City of London by the Lord Mayor of London. In October 2002, he was given India’s Annual National Law Day Award by the Indian Prime Minister for his outstanding contribution to the field of International Arbitration Law. In June 2008, he was appointed an Arbitrator to the Panel of Arbitrators by the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board. In 2011 he was appointed as Representative of the Union of Comoros to the International Maritime Organisation. Zaiwalla is currently appointed as Arbitrator for various international commercial disputes.

Dr. David Nott OBE - Vascular Surgeon

Based at the Chelsea and Westminster, St Mary’s and Royal Marsden hospitals in London, for the past 20 years David Nott has also volunteered for the Red Cross, travelling to war zones including Bosnia, Iraq, Gaza and Syria. David Nott gained his medical degree at Manchester University. He later attended the Royal College of Surgeons in London to become a Consultant Surgeon in 1992. He has been a Consultant Surgeon at Chelsea & Westminster Hospital for nearly 15 years. Mr Nott is also specialised within vascular surgery and is an authority in laparoscopic surgery - in particular AAA repairs and distal arterial bypasses. He is the first surgeon to combine laparoscopic and vascular surgery.


Andrew Neil is a newspaper editor, publisher, broadcaster and business consultant on media matters working out of London, New York, Edinburgh and France. A veteran television presenter, he has fronted both The Daily Politics show on BBC Two, and This Week on BBC One since January 2003. His varied career has included stints as a political advisor, as UK editor of The Economist, editor of The Sunday Times, executive chairman of Sky Television, executive editor of Fox Television News of America and an anchorman on British political television. Neil remains chief executive of The Spectator and chairman of ITP Group, the publisher of Arabian Business. A Fellow of the Royal Society for Arts, Manufactures and Commerce, Neil has honorary degrees from Napier University in Edinburgh, and the University of Paisley. In the autumn of 1999 he was elected Lord Rector of the University of St Andrews, UK, which is recognised as one of the world’s oldest and most distinguished universities. On stepping down from that post in 2002 he was made a Doctor of Laws by the university.