1 of 42
50. Steve Williams, Group CEO, Gulf Finance
\nAs the importance of SMEs in the UAE economy continues to grow, Steve Williams is playing a key role in attempting to fund them. Williams has worked in the UAE for the past eight years and joined Gulf Finance at the start of 2008 with a mandate to turn the company into a leading provider of finance to SMEs. Since then, the company has successfully diversified, built one of the country’s largest SME loan portfolios and won a number of highly coveted industry awards. At the start of 2012, Williams was appointed group CEO. In this role, Williams is responsible for the regional deployment of the Gulf Finance model and for attracting capital from international investors who wish to access the MENA SME market. Williams has a rich and varied background in financial services, and immediately prior to joining Gulf Finance was the chief operating officer for Lloyds TSB in Dubai\n
2 of 42
47. Matthew Hurn, Executive Director, Group Treasury, Mubadala
\nMatthew Hurn is executive director of group treasury at Mubadala Development Co, the Abu Dhabi state-owned investment company that has stakes in GE, the Carlyle Group, Tabreed and Aldar Properties. Hurn’s responsibility lies with treasury and corporate funding, financial risk management, tax, insurance and investor relations at Mubadala. He is chairman of the Association of Corporate Treasurers Middle East.
3 of 42
45. Simon Frith, Managing Director, Al Futtaim Motors
\nAs managing director of Al Futtaim Motors, Simon Frith runs a unit of one of the oldest companies in the UAE. Established in the 1930s as a trading business, Al Futtaim is one of the most progressive regional business houses headquartered in Dubai and operates through more than 65 companies across sectors as diverse as commerce, industry and services. It employs in excess of 20,000 people across the UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Syria, Singapore and Europe. Frith oversees the Toyota and Lexus franchises in the UAE. He oversaw a 32 percent rise in Toyota sales in the country in 2012 over the previous year.
4 of 42
43. Graham Gill, Managing Director, MENA, Sweett Group
\nGraham Gill is managing director of Sweett Group’s regional operations. Gill has broad experience in project and development management internationally. He has a track record in projects in UK, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, many of which have had a multi-billion-dollar value. Gill has been involved from planning and developing virtual new cities to the construction of hi-tech fabrication plants and nuclear power stations. He has also become increasingly involved in green initiatives as the Middle East develops its future resources and power consumption plans. Prior to his present role, the Imperial College graduate held senior positions with Sama Dubai, Al Habtoor Group and MWB/Manhattan Loft at Canary Wharf in the UK.
5 of 42
42. John Gay, Regional Director Middle East, Rolls-Royce
\nPerhaps the most recent arrival on our list, John Gay has just been appointed as Rolls-Royce’s regional boss. Gay moves to the Middle East after a two-year posting in India, where he served as Rolls-Royce’s senior vice president of Defence Aerospace in South Asia. He began his career with the company at the age of sixteen as a technician apprentice and has held a number of key business roles including international assignments in Europe, South America and India before accepting the position of regional director, Middle East. Gay will be based from the company’s office in Abu Dhabi. Rolls-Royce is a major supplier to airlines and defence ministries, provides marine equipment and design expertise to a number of shipyards. It also has installed over 400 industrial gas turbines servicing the oil and gas industry across the region.
6 of 42
41. Tom Urquhart, Radio and Television Personality
\nTom Urquhart is a television and radio presenter who formerly worked for a daily broadsheet newspaper in London. He is on air three times a week as presenter on Dubai Eye 103.8’s sport show, is a prominent part of the latest Emirates Airline campaign and is co-presenter of two Dubai One shows, Ask One and World of Sports. After studying English at university in the UK, Urquhart worked on several British newspapers, followed by a brief stint in public relations. He then worked as deputy editor of What’s On for Motivate Publishing and was editor at large for the launch of Hello Middle East. Urquhart has worked extensively on the small screen in the last decade. He was chosen as host for City 7s Good Morning Dubai show, the first live English language breakfast show in the UAE. He has also been featured in a Discovery Channel feature on 'Dubai, A Place in the Sun' from the UK, and 'Lonely Planet does Dubai'. Most recently, he garnered plaudits for his role as presenter on The Entrepreneur, a reality show based in Dubai.
7 of 42
39 Camilla and Lucy D’Abo, Managing Partners, Dabo & Co
\nSisters Camilla and Lucy set up Dabo & Co, a public relations and event management firm in 2004. It services clients in banking and finance, real estate, hospitality and retail. Clients currently include more than 40 leading brands such as HSBC, Julius Baer, Cisco, Jumeirah Restaurants, Art Dubai, BMW and Hilton, among others. Dabo & Co operates in fifteen countries throughout the Middle East and North Africa region. The company does corporate communications, financial communications, brand market entry, crisis management, and media training. Lucy has a background in events management; she has managed events as diverse as IMF meetings to the Cartier Polo in Dubai. Camilla has a background in finance, and more than twelve years’ regional experience in PR.
8 of 42
38. Ziad Makhzoumi, CEO, Fakih IVF
\nZiad Makhzoumi started his career in 1981 with Booz & Co before becoming CFO of a Luxembourg-based private holding company operating in North America, Europe, and the MENA region where he was involved in strategic consultancy, private equity buyouts and restructuring activities in Europe, the Middle East and North America. In 2008 he was appointed CFO of Arabtec Holding PJSC, the largest listed construction company in the GCC, where he was involved in financial restructuring activities in Europe, the Middle East and North America until 2012 when he left to join Fakih IVF Group, a leader in fertility treatment in the GCC and the MENA region, as its CEO.
9 of 42
37. Nicholas Lunt, Managing Director, M:Communications Middle East
\nNicholas Lunt is managing director of M:’s Middle East operations and leads the firm’s relationships with listed entities and financial sector clients in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Egypt, Iraq and the UAE. Lunt started his career as an army officer in the Queen's Royal Lancers, then the Sultan of Oman's Armed Forces in the 1980s, before moving on to become managing director of Ogilvy in Belgium, then becoming a civilian spokesman for the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) in Kabul. He also assumed various consultancy roles with Adam Smith International in Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine, Nairobi and Abuja. His work experience includes working as a communications adviser to the Prime Minister's office in Iraq, and as an adviser to various government ministers in Afghanistan and the leadership of the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah. In 2008 and early 2009 he was based in Mumbai where he was director of client services of a leading Indian PR company, where he was responsible for the launch of Tata’s Nano car as well as assisting other major clients.
10 of 42
36. Chris Bell, Owner, Face to Face
\nChris Bell started his career at McCann Erickson in London when they were the biggest agency in the world. He worked at Coca-Cola and Gillette and then moved on to work for JWT London, who then transferred him to Dubai where he headed up the Unilever (Beverage) business across the region as group account director. He joined Face to Face in 2004 and with his partner bought out the previous owners. He has grown it into the biggest privately owned and independent agency in the region.
11 of 42
35. Antonia Carver, Fair Director, Art Dubai
\nAntonia Carver became fair director of Art Dubai in August 2010. Based in the UAE for the past decade, she has written extensively on Middle Eastern art and film, as a correspondent for The Art Newspaper and Screen International, among other publications, and edited books and journals. She joined Bidoun as an editor in 2004 and later became director of the Middle Eastern arts organisation’s projects division, co-curating educational workshops, film and video series, and overseeing the touring Bidoun Library, artists’ commissions and talks, among other projects. Carver is on the Arab film programming committee for the Dubai International Film Festival. Before moving to Dubai in 2001, she was based in London and worked at Phaidon, the Institute of International Visual Arts and G+B Arts International.
12 of 42
34. Rupert Young, Partner, Brunswick
\nRupert Young has been a communications consultant for eighteen years. He started his consultancy career in the UK, including ten years with Brunswick in London, before launching the firm’s practice in the Gulf in 2007. Based in Dubai, he manages a team of consultants with strong international and regional experience.
\nYoung advises senior management of government-owned entities, private and listed companies and multi-nationals looking to increase their profile in the region. He has experience of advising clients across a range of sectors with a specialism towards financial services and real estate. Young specialises in corporate and financial communications advising clients on corporate positioning, media relations, listed company reporting requirements, investor relations, financial transactions and the management of major issues. He has extensive experience advising companies on the communications aspects of IPOs and listings.
13 of 42
33. Graham Martins, Managing Director, PKF
\nGraham Martins is a fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and is the managing partner of the UAE practice of PKF, a firm of accountants, auditors and business advisers. PKF is a member firm of the PKF International Ltd network of legally independent firms comprising of over 200 member firms in 120 countries. Now based in Dubai, he has been with the UAE firm since 1992. Prior to that, he was with PKF London, in their corporate finance department, having joined the firm from university in 1981. Martins is directly responsible for the day-to-day operation of the firm, setting direction, policy and strategy in consultation with the other partners. He also acts as international liaison with PKF International. As a partner, Martins has direct responsibility for the management consulting division and corporate finance activities. Engagements undertaken include project feasibility studies, mergers and acquisitions, business valuations, intangible asset identification and valuation, goodwill impairment reviews, due diligence and corporate structuring in a wide range of industries and service sectors.
14 of 42
32. John Davis, Regional CEO, Colliers International
\nJohn Davis has over 26 years of property-related experience and is presently regional CEO for Colliers International, which now operates four regional offices. Davis joined Colliers International in 1994 from one of South Africa’s leading financial institutions as general manager — finance for the company’s Property Management Division. Davis was instrumental in Colliers International entering into the facilities management arena across Southern Africa and in 1998 a new division of the company was formed with him assuming responsibility for both divisions as the property and facilities management director, prior to his appointment as the company’s managing director in 2000. By 2000 the Colliers International — SA property management division had grown to administer over $1bn in assets, covering 2.5 million sq m throughout Southern Africa, collecting rentals of over $8.25m per month. This positioned Colliers International as the largest non-institutional property/asset management company in Southern Africa. In 2001 he transferred with Colliers to the UAE to drive the growth of the firm’s business across the Middle East region.
15 of 42
31. Tanaz Dizadji, Founder, START
\nTanaz Dizadji left London and her job in 2010 as head of arts and education at Elephant Family to become a director START, a non-profit organisation founded by Art Dubai and the Al Madad Foundation, providing art education for refugees, orphans and children with special needs. Dizadji currently manages over 40 workshops per week across countries including the UAE, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine. The organisation now reaches over 700 disadvantaged children per week. Dizadji, a qualified chartered accountant, previously worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers.
16 of 42
29. Safi Qurashi, Chairman, Q Group
\nBritish property developer Safi Qurashi won his freedom last year after being found not guilty of cheque fraud charges, and was released from jail after serving a two-and-half-year sentence. Qurashi went on hunger strike for seven weeks last year before being released from jail, and used the verdict to call on UAE authorities to amend regulations regarding bounced cheques. He now heads up Q Group of Companies, a new Dubai real estate holding company, which plans a series of new development projects and investment vehicles worth around $200m.
17 of 42
28. Michael Wright, CEO, Spinneys Middle East
\nMichael Wright is the CEO of Spinneys in the Middle East, a firm he first joined in Dubai in 1987 before the chain expanded regionally. Wright previously worked for Argyll Foods (Safeway/Presto) and at Tesco in the UK. The Middle East grocery chain was established in Alexandria, Egypt by an ex-British Army serviceman to supply provisions to Palestine Railways. However, the crisis in Lebanon in the 1970s forced the high-end retailer to pare back its operations before the brand came back with a bang in the 1990s and 2000s. In the years since, the firm has aggressively snapped up market share in its home turf of Lebanon, as well as moving into new markets including Egypt, Qatar and Jordan. Wright has been spearheading the brand’s next stage of growth with an eye to open outlets in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq in addition to North African countries like Libya, Tunisia and Algeria.
18 of 42
27. Jonathan Morris, CEO, Standard Chartered Bank UAE
\nJonathan Morris has been chief executive of Standard Chartered bank in the UAE since 2011. He steers the overall country strategy and direction of the bank, which employs about 2,500 staff and contributes more than $1.25bn in revenue to the banking group. He previously headed the bank’s franchise in Bahrain and has worked extensively across the Standard Chartered footprint (Asia, Africa and Middle East), including previous experience in the region, where he was responsible for corporate banking clients in the UAE and Oman. Prior to joining Standard Chartered, Morris, a Loughborough University graduate, worked at Paribas and HSBC.
19 of 42
26. Karl Hamer, Managing Director, Al Habtoor Motors
\nAs managing director of Al Habtoor Motors, Karl Hamer oversees the import and distribution operation of one of the most prestigious car dealerships in the UAE and an icon of the prominent Habtoor merchant family. Hamer directs the business agenda of the company, which employs about 1,400 people and has been growing market share for brands like Bentley, Bugatti, McLaren, and Mitsubishi. Al Habtoor Motors was recognized in 2011 by Bentley as ‘Dealer of the Year’ and for achieving the highest Middle East and North Africa & India sales. Prior to joining Al Habtoor Motors in 2008, Hamer was at Casey Motor Group. Hamer has 35 years of industry experience and started his career on the showroom floor.
20 of 42
25. Graham Honeybill, CEO, RAKBANK
\nGraham Honeybill has been chief executive of National Bank of Ras Al Khaimah (RAKBANK), and will remain as a non-executive director of the Abu Dhabi listed lender after he retires in July and will be replaced by Lloyds banker Ian Larkin. The bank reported a thirteen percent increase in first quarter profit this year which reached AED368m ($100.19m) from the year earlier period. Honeybill joined RAKBANK in 1996, when it was one of the UAE’s smallest banks; in the time since then, he has helped transform RAKBANK into one of the Gulf’s top retail lenders, with increasingly popular credit card, home finance and consumer finance offerings.
21 of 42
24. Jennifer Bibbings, Partner, Trowers & Hamlins
\nJennifer Bibbings is a partner in Trowers & Hamlins’ Dubai office, which she joined in 1993. She specialises in many aspects of UAE corporate and commercial work, including mergers and acquisitions, distribution and franchising, and incorporations. Bibbings has acted for many household names in retail, fast food, hospitality and entertainment sectors, including McDonald’s, Walt Disney, Marks & Spencer, Hilton Hotels and Harvey Nichols. She is acknowledged as a legal expert by Chambers & Partners’ Global Guide to the World’s Leading Lawyers for Business and The Legal 500 Guide to Europe, the Middle East and Africa in the field of corporate and commercial law. Bibbings was selected for inclusion in the peer-review publication, Best Lawyers International, in the specialities of corporate and hospitality and tourism law. She is honorary legal advisor to the British Consul General.
22 of 42
23. Francis Matthew, Editor at Large, Gulf News
\nA University of Exeter graduate, Matthew is a regular commentator on the region on TV and radio, and has contributed to a variety of international conferences on Gulf affairs. Fluent in Arabic, he has played a large part in the development of Gulf News, the Gulf’s biggest-selling English-language daily. Matthew has worked in the Middle East as a journalist for 30 years, with occasional spells in Europe. He previously worked as managing editor of Al Nisr Media and spent time in London, Dublin and Brussels, with Lafferty Group, EMAP, and the Economist Intelligence Unit. Matthew is the co-editor of two pictorial histories of the UAE, Building a Nation and The Rise of a Nation.
23 of 42
22. Mark Beer, Registrar, Dubai International Financial Centre Courts
\nAs the registrar of the DIFC Courts, Mark Beer is the senior administrative officer of the judicial authority of the DIFC, and is responsible for the overall administration and management of the DIFC Courts. He also has various judicial functions such as handling urgent applications and ensuring the delivery of efficient justice by actively managing the progress of cases. Prior to joining the DIFC Courts, Beer, a University of Oxford graduate, spent five years with MasterCard Worldwide in Dubai where he served as the company’s regional legal counsel for South Asia, Middle East and Africa (SAMEA), handling legal and regulatory matters across the region, and later as vice president, heading the company’s government relations and corporate services initiatives across SAMEA. Previously, Beer worked in the corporate finance team of Man Investments in Switzerland, and prior to that worked for Clyde & Co and Edge & Ellison.
24 of 42
21. Margaret Atack, Group Senior Director for Education, GEMS
\nMargaret Atack is an education professional with over 35 years of experience in both the public and private sectors. She joined GEMS in 2005, since then she has gained extensive experience in the private school sector through her role as a Principal, Director of International Schools, Senior Director of Quality Assurance and now GEMS Group Senior Director – Education. She is committed to providing quality education that is effectively led and managed across all GEMS schools. She has a successful track record of ensuring that schools fuel the GEMS constant search for excellence. At the same time Margaret has developed a set of processes and procedures that ensures the delivery of quality outcomes, against a clearly defined set of performance indicators and standards. Margaret also provides support to schools in optimizing financial performance to ensure educational sustainability and improvements over time.\nAfter achieving her degree, Margaret Atack taught in range of schools across a number of UK Local Education Authorities. She served as a Principal for Birmingham schools, the largest urban education authority in Europe. Margaret’s consultancy expertise was recognized by her appointment as one of the first Consultant Leaders in the UK, attached to Birmingham LEA, working with serving Principals to improve standards and outcomes within their schools. She has also served as an assessor for various UK Quality Marks. Following on from her role as Principal, Margaret was appointed as a School Improvement Advisor for a Local Education Authority. She was responsible for monitoring, supporting and improving the quality of education in a number of schools across the Authority, with a particular focus on the use of assessment and analysis of data to support improvement across all school phases. Her responsibilities also included leading on focused intervention strategies for schools in challenging circumstances in order to bring about rapid and sustained improvements.
25 of 42
19. John Brash, CEO, Brash Brands
\nJohn Brash is the CEO of Brash Brands, a consultancy that helps clients build strong brands that facilitate greater commercial value. Brash has more than two decades of experience in the branding industry, advising clients from major global corporations to ambitious start-ups. In 2003, he moved to Dubai to head up Landor Associates’ creative department for the MENA region. He founded Brash in May 2007 and has a who's who of clients in the Middle East, which comprises or has included Emaar Properties, Emirates, Batelco, Armani Residences, the Abu Dhabi Film Festival, Savola Investments, Masdar, Mubadala, Blackstone, Aabar, Msheireb Downtown and Abu Dhabi Investment House among many others. The company also operates in Bangalore, London, Salzburg, Shanghai and Singapore.
26 of 42
18. Simon Cooper, Deputy Chairman and CEO, HSBC Bank Middle East
\nSimon Cooper is in charge of global bank HSBC’s highly profitable regional operations. He has served as: CEO and president of HSBC Korea of HSBC Holdings plc; head of corporate and investment banking in Singapore at HSBC Bank and deputy CEO in Thailand at HSBC. Cooper has served as head of Middle East Operations at HSBC Holdings since March 2009 and group general manager of the UK market from June 2008 to March 2009. He joined HSBC in 1989. He served as CEO and president for South Korea Operations of HSBC Holdings Plc from April 2006 to March 2009. Cooper has also been a non-executive director of The Saudi British Bank since 2009. He served as a director at British Arab Commercial Bank between 2009 and 2010. In his present role, Cooper has overseen the purchase of Lloyds’ local retail business in the UAE, and the merger between HSBC and Oman International Bank.
27 of 42
17. Paul Rayner, Special Advisor, Khalaf Al Habtoor
\nPaul Rayner came out of retirement to assume his present role as special advisor to the chairman of the Al Habtoor Group in 2012. Rayner has travelled extensively throughout the Middle East, dealing with ultra-high net worth clients for more than 30 years and has an in-depth understanding of the region. The former vice chairman of Credit Suisse UK left the world of banking in 2007, having amassed a wealth of banking experience through having worked in the industry for nearly 40 years. Prior to his vice chairman role at Credit Suisse he was senior advisor and head of offshore private banking with the bank. He previously held positions at Barclays Private Bank Ltd, with his last position being regional director, Middle and Far East. Rayner is involved in several British charities — particularly Help for Heroes, a British charity to help provide better facilities for wounded servicemen and women.. He is also an active member of several British establishments including Guards Polo Club, National Farmers Union and Greenfields Shooting Club.
28 of 42
16. Isobel Abulhoul, Founder, Magrudy’s
\nA long-term resident of Dubai, Isobel Abulhoul began her career in the emirate as a primary school teacher, before founding Al Ittihad School with her husband. Not satisfied with that achievement, she went on to launch Magrudy’s, one of Dubai’s biggest bookstore chains. Her love of books did not end there; Abulhoul was also the driving force behind the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature — now the biggest event of its type in the region. The 2014 event played host to some of the planet’s top authors, including historian Antony Beevor, travel writer William Dalrymple and biographer Simon Sebag Montefiore. Abulhoul, who is also founder of Jerboa book publishers, was awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in recognition of her years of service to education and British literature in the UAE.\nAbulhoul was also presented in 2011 with the Cultural Personality Award by HH Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah.
29 of 42
15. Sir Maurice Flanagan, Former Executive Vice Chairman, Emirates Group
\n“I learnt a lot from Sir Maurice. Indeed, when you see some good in me, you see what Maurice taught me. My bad habits are my own.” So said Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum on the retirement of Sir Maurice Flanagan in April this year. Legendary Emirates vice chairman Sir Maurice helped found the airline 28 years ago. He was a key architect in the phenomenal growth of Emirates Airline and Group, having overseen dnata's operations and subsequently every stage in the airline’s remarkable rise from regional carrier with two aircraft to global giant with a fleet of more than 170 aircraft. Sir Maurice first arrived in Dubai in 1978 when he was appointed director and general manager of dnata. Six years later, he led the ten-man team that hatched the plan to launch an airline in five months on a budget of just $10m. He was the managing director for the inaugural Emirates flight in 1985 and his pivotal role in the company’s development was recognised in 1990 when he was appointed group managing director of Emirates Group.
30 of 42
14. Nick Maclean, Managing Director, CBRE Middle East
\nAfter joining real estate firm St Quintin as a graduate in 1987, Nicholas Maclean was appointed head of the firm’s professional services department in 1995, becoming partner in 1996. Following St Quintin’s merger with Insignia Richard Ellis — which created CBRE — he became head of the rating and taxation department and a member of the city business team management board. In 2001, Maclean left the CBRE London office to take up an international role within the firm, concentrating on the development and expansion of cross-border European valuation advisory services. In 2004, he was appointed managing director of CBRE Middle East and he currently is leading the firm’s initiative to grow operations in the Middle East.
\nMaclean is a fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and of the Institute of Rating, Revenue and Valuation (IRRV). Headquartered in the US, CBRE is widely considered to be the world’s biggest real estate services firm, offering asset services, brokerage, speciality services and projects advice to its global portfolio of clients.
31 of 42
13. Jonathon Davidson, Chairman, British Business Group
\nJonathon Davidson is a dispute resolution lawyer and managing partner at Davidson & Co. He has acted in all manner of disputes for institutions, developers, investors and public and private companies and individuals. Davidson previously worked for Clyde & Co, the international law firm, based at its Dubai offices and, more latterly, associate legal director of Sama Dubai, the international real estate arm of Dubai Holding. He has litigation experience in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) Courts and the Dubai World Tribunal (DWT) and acted as counsel for the claimants in the ground-breaking case of Diamond Developers & Ors versus Nakheel PJSC & Jumeirah Village LLC. Davidson is also chairman of the British Business Group of Dubai and the Northern Emirates, co-chairman of the Joint Committee of the British Business Groups of the UAE and is as an official observer to the UK-UAE CEO Forum, a ‘think tank’ established jointly by the UK and UAE governments to promote bilateral trade and commerce.
32 of 42
12. Ayman Asfari, Chairman, Petrofac
\nThe boss of oil services giant Petrofac, Syrian-born Ayman Asfari sits at the helm of one of the fastest growing FTSE 100 businesses. By any measure, Asfari is a success story. He took his first role in construction in Oman in his early 20s in a bid to fund an MBA at Wharton. It turned out to be unnecessary; less than a decade later, he was a millionaire with his own firm. Since buying out Petrofac in 2001, Asfari has turned it into one of the leading players in the oil market. It listed in 2005 and today employs more than 17,000 people worldwide, with bases spanning the UK, Sharjah, India and Malaysia. In 2006, Asfari launched his eponymous foundation, which funds education for young people. In 2011, Asfari won the UK category of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.
33 of 42
11. Lucy Bruce, Founder, Harmony House
\nResiding in the United Arab Emirates since 1999, Lucy Bruce holds a BA (Honours) in Education. In 2003, she co-founded Insignia along with her husband Gaurav Sinha. Today, Insignia is the region’s leading brand marketing firm in the luxury, travel and hospitality sectors and offers its services to over 60 hotels and resorts across eighteen countries. In recent years, Bruce has become increasingly devoted to charity work and in 2009 she established Harmony House, a day-shelter for destitute children in India. The charity is registered in the UK as well as India and provides food, shelter, education and medical care for over 200 children as well as giving social support and vocational training to underprivileged mothers and young women. In 2011, Bruce partnered with Beverly Jatwani to launch Home Grown Children’s Eco Nursery, the UAE’s first and only ecological and socially responsible children’s nursery. The nursery aims to develop a strong social conscience in all its children by pairing children at the nursery with those at Harmony House.
34 of 42
10. Steven Lamprell, President, Lamprell Group
\nSteven Lamprell has played a prominent role in the development of the offshore energy industry in the Gulf for over 30 years, more recently providing specialised services to the onshore and offshore oil and gas industry, and amassing a personal fortune estimated at $450m. The British businessman founded Lamprell in the late 1970s, which expanded to include three sites in the UAE and a facility in Thailand. Lamprell commenced its first accommodation jackup rig conversion in 1989 and the refurbishment of its first jackup drilling rig in 1992. The company continued to focus its efforts on this business activity until the late 1990s, when it began to diversify into the new build construction market for the offshore oil and gas sector. The company was successfully listed on London’s Alternative Investment Market (AIM) in October 2006, at which point Lamprell became company president, tasked with bolstering relationships with individuals, companies and governmental bodies important to the ongoing success of the group. In 2008, it moved to the UKLA official list of the London Stock Exchange.
35 of 42
9. John Ferguson, Head, Darley Stud
\nAs the head of Darley Stud, John Ferguson splits his time between Dubai and the UK, where he manages the biggest bloodstock empire in world racing. Founded by HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, in 1981, Darley Stud currently has stallions in seven countries around the world. Kildangan Stud in County Kildare, Ireland, was purchased in 1986, and Darley’s global expansion continued in 2001 with the purchase of Jonabell Farm, located in the famous bluegrass state of Kentucky in the United States.
\nDarley also has a stud in Japan, and established Darley Australia in 2001. It comprises several properties (studs and training facilities) located in the leading thoroughbred areas of New South Wales and Victoria.
36 of 42
8. Tony Douglas, CEO, Abu Dhabi Airports Company
\nIn March this year, former London Heathrow chief executive Tony Douglas was appointed as CEO of Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC). Douglas, also formerly CEO at Abu Dhabi Ports Company (ADPC), is leading the transformation of Abu Dhabi’s international gateway through one of the most ambitious multi-billion-dollar airport expansion schemes in the world. The airport is building up to a capacity of 40 million passengers a year and will be a critical element in Abu Dhabi's vision to become a global commercial hub and thriving destination for international tourism. Douglas’ track record of achievements includes delivering Heathrow Airport's award-winning Terminal 5 on time and on budget, as well as leading the programme management team in the build-up to the widely acclaimed London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. At ADPC, he was responsible for the on-time, on-budget delivery of Khalifa Port and its associated industrial zone, Kizad. Douglas was previously with airport operator BAA, where his roles included: managing director of the £4.3bn Heathrow Terminal 5 project; group supply chain director; group technical director and CEO of Heathrow Airport.
37 of 42
6. Giselle Pettyfer, CEO, Falcon & Associates
\nA s CEO of Falcon & Associates, which was established in 2009 by HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, Giselle Pettyfer has a wide mandate to craft, shape and influence the image of Dubai. The advisory company attempts to positively influence views in Dubai in both emerging markets and more established economies. The University of Cambridge graduate was previously the head of communications for the International Olympic Committee and head of corporate communications for the Jordan Grand Prix. Pettyfer has worked on Dubai’s twin bids to host the Olympic Games in 2020 (which has been put to one side as the city builds up its grassroots sports programme) and the emirate’s plan to host the World Expo in the same year.
38 of 42
5. Michael Tomalin, CEO, National Bank of Abu Dhabi
\nAnother Briton credited with building up a major local bank is long-serving National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) boss Michael Tomalin. Tomalin joined NBAD as chief executive in 1999 — a year in which the bank posted profits of AED311m ($84.67m). Since 1999, the lender’s net profit has grown each year to reach AED4.3bn at the end of 2012, an amazing fourteenfold fold increase in the bottom line. During Tomalin’s tenure, NBAD launched its brokerage arm, Abu Dhabi Financial Services (ADFS), ahead of the stock market boom in UAE. ADFS has become one of the largest brokerage firms in the country.
\nTomalin also correctly identified lucrative opportunities in Islamic finance and private banking. Under his direction NBAD began offering Islamic banking products and services in 2007. The bank set up Abu Dhabi National Islamic Finance (ADNIF) as a fully Sharia-compliant unit in 2009. From around 48 branches in 1999, NBAD achieved a milestone of 100 UAE branches by end 2009 (122 branches by the end of 2012). It now operates in nineteen countries on five continents. In 1991, Tomalin was awarded the OBE in recognition of his services to the British community in Japan. He helped launch the first British School in Tokyo, and served as the chairman of its board of governors. In 2012, the School of Finance, the leading provider of professional banking and financial qualifications, awarded Tomalin an Honorary Doctorate of Science in Banking and Finance in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the financial services industry. Tomalin will retire from the bank in June.
39 of 42
4. Rick Pudner, CEO, Emirates NBD
\nRick Pudner heads Emirates NBD, Dubai's largest lender. Pudner joined Emirates Bank as chief executive in 2006 before it merged with National Bank of Dubai a year later. He led ENBD through Dubai’s boom years before the emirate's property market tanked escalating into a full blown financial crisis that required the restructuring of corporate and government debt. Having successfully managed both the merger and the financial crisis, Pudner is set to step down from his position by the end of this year. Pudner was previously with HSBC for 24 years, including as CEO of the bank’s unit in South Korea and head of corporate banking in the Middle East. He also held the positions of chairman of the Foreign Investors Advisory Council for the Mayor of Seoul, chairman of the European Union Banking Committee in Korea, and vice chairman of Foreign Bankers Group in Korea. Pudner currently holds board positions for Emirates Investment Service, the Economic Development Council, Emirates Fund Managers (Jersey) and Emirates Financial Services.
40 of 42
3. Paul Griffiths, CEO, Dubai Airports
\nAviation contributes around $40bn to the UAE economy, accounting for almost fifteen percent of GDP. Much of the country’s success in leveraging the benefits of the sector comes from the performance of Dubai International Airport, which has grown astonishingly quickly in the last two decades. Griffiths became CEO of Dubai Airports in 2007, and he has overseen the operations and development of one of the busiest airports in the world. He managed the airport’s successful launch of Terminal 3 in 2008 and is also at the helm of Dubai World Central, which will eventually be the world’s largest airport with capacity to handle 160 million passengers and 12 million tonnes of freight annually once fully operational. Right now, he is in the process of overseeing Dubai Airport’s $7.8bn expansion plan, as well as simultaneously coordinating the handover to Dubai World Central. Griffiths was previously managing director of London’s Gatwick Airport, the second largest airport in the UK. Before joining airport operator BAA in 2004, he spent fourteen years with the Virgin Group, working closely with Sir Richard Branson as a board director of the Virgin Travel Group, looking over commercial activities of both Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Trains. In the 1980s, he spent four years in Hong Kong developing the marketing, commercial planning and technology functions for the then start-up airline Dragonair.
41 of 42
2. Sam Barnett, CEO, MBC Group
\nA fter nine years as chief operating officer, Sam Barnett, once an NGO worker, became CEO of MBC Group in 2011 which operates under chairman Sheikh Waleed Al Ibrahim. Barnett, an INSEAD graduate, joined the group in 2002 after his former employer Arthur Andersen imploded during the Enron scandal. He supported the chairman in restructuring the commercial flow of the company into the largest media and entertainment group in the Middle East and North Africa region, with eleven channels including the Al Arabiya news outlet and two radio stations and three online platforms under its umbrella. MBC was the first private free-to-air satellite broadcasting company in the Arab world after its launch in London in 1991. Barnett has overseen the launch of several new channels and the enforcement of commercial and financial disciplines on all operations.
42 of 42
1. Tim Clark, President, Emirates Airline
\nAnother massive year for Emirates Airline has just seen the carrier’s net income rise by 52 percent — its 25th straight year of profits. Much of this growth is due to Tim Clark, an able assistant to Emirates Group chairman and CEO Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum and to the former vice chairman, Sir Maurice Flanagan, who retired earlier this year. During the carrier’s rapid expansion, Clark has been responsible for overseeing some of the largest plane orders in history.
\nClark joined Emirates in 1985 when the Dubai-based carrier was formed. Having previously worked at British Caledonian and Bahrain’s Gulf Air, Clark leveraged his experience in conjunction with Dubai’s strategic location, and oversaw Emirates’ expansion into the world’s largest airline by passenger traffic on the back of one the strongest international networks of any carrier. The London University economics graduate became president of the carrier in 2003 after spending eighteen years helping build an aviation empire.
\nClark is the chairman of the Emirates Airline Foundation, a non-profit charity that he helped found, which provides humanitarian, philanthropic aid and services for children in need around the world. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society. In November 2009 he was conferred an “Officier de la Legion d’Honneur” by the French government for his services to transport and aviation and was given the 2009 Gold Award from the Royal Aeronautical Society for his contribution to civil aerospace. In addition, he holds the 2011 Airline Business and Flight Global Achievement Awards.