SPEAKERS

Eric Modave

Chief Operating Officer | Arab Bank

Eric Modave is chief operating officer at Arab Bank, a position he has held since July 2014. Mr Modave has 24 years of experience in the financial services industry. Before joining Arab Bank, Mr Modave was chief operating officer of Barclays Africa, where he was based in Kenya and Johannesburg, covering 12 African countries. From 2006 until 2009, he was head of global payment operations at Barclays, in London. Before this, Mr Modave held various positions at Citibank, including head of consumer bank operations at Citibank EMEA from 2003 until 2006 and head of operations and technology at Citibank International Personal Banking, Europe between 2001 and 2003. He was chief financial officer of Citibank International Personal Banking from 1999 until 2001. Mr Modave graduated as a commercial engineer from HEC University of Liège in 1989 and became a certified chartered accountant in 1996. He also completed the Advanced Management Programme at INSEAD Business School, Fontainebleau, in 2014

Ramana Kumar

SVP & Head of Payments | First Abu Dhabi Bank

Ramana Kumar is currently the SVP & Head of Payments for First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) responsible for building lifecycle solutions for corporates encompassing Merchant acquiring, Government solutions, Prepaid solutions, Remittances and UAE’s first fully featured digital wallet -Payit.

Previously, he was Head of Global Transaction Banking (GTB) and was instrumental in building Middle East regional proposition for the Bank including products and channels across cash, trade and cards.

Ramana has special interests around innovation/ fintech/ financial inclusion /blockchain and the impact on the payments space. He was instrumental in first live implementation of Blockchain with Ripple for cross border payments. He has participated in many forums focusing on future of payments, financial inclusion, digital wallets, KYC and Identity, fintech / blockchain.

Sonny Zulu

Managing Director, Retail Banking, UAE | Standard Chartered

Sonny Zulu, Managing Director, Retail Banking, UAE, Standard Chartered Bank

Sonny Zulu is the Head and Managing Director of Retail Banking business at Standard Chartered Bank, UAE. He is responsible for driving Wealth Management, Retail Products, Distribution/Branch Banking across Priority, Premium, Personal and Islamic segments.

Prior to this role he was the Regional Head of Strategic Transformation, Alliance and Performance Management for Africa and the Middle East at Standard Chartered Bank. Before relocating to Dubai, Sonny was the Head of Retail Banking for Standard Chartered Bank Zambia and Southern Africa. He took up senior leadership responsibilities at a very young age and he has held a number of senior executive roles in the Bank which include; Head of Retail Clients, General Manager for Distribution for Zambia and Southern Africa and Head of Corporate Affairs.

As an entrepreneur, Sonny is a joint owner of Air Mafuta Aviation services. He founded this company in 2009 together with two other Directors. The company supplies aviation fuel to both local and international clients.

Craig Ramsey

VP, Head of Real-Time Payments | ACI Worldwide

Craig Ramsey, VP, Head of Real-Time Payments, ACI Worldwide

Craig has over 25 years' experience working with banks throughout EMEA with their corporate payments and banking needs. He has been with ACI for over 12 of those years, providing specialist consulting to wholesale banking customers. Through the initiatives of the Euro, SWIFTNet, CLS, TARGET, TARGET2, SEPA, and UK Faster Payments (amongst others), Craig has helped customers leverage the power of the ACI solutions to ensure that the business needs are met.

Craig is currently VP, Head of Real-Time Payments. Working with customers, prospects and industry players alike, he helps to ensure that ACI's products are industry-leading and provide pre-packaged flexible solutions that enable institutions to quicken time to market, reduce risk and lower the cost of real-time operations.

ACI has been partnered with SWIFT for over 30 years and was the first SWIFT gpi certified solution on the market. ACI won ‘Best use of emerging or innovative technology’ at the MEFTECH awards for its SWIFT gpi launch of National Bank of Kuwait.

Nihal Abughattas

MarketPlace Community Director, MEA and APAC | Temenos | Mentor | Startopbootcamp FinTech

Based in Dubai, Nihal Abughattas is a Founding Board Member of the MENA Fintech Association; an inclusive, not-for-profit body that fosters an open, cross border dialogue for the region's Fintech community.

Nihal held a number of roles over the span of six years in Temenos; the top banking technology vendor serving 41 out of the top 50 banks globally. She was the Marketplace Community Director for Middle East, Africa and AsiaPacific. In her role, Nihal drove collaboration between Fintechs and financial institutions and forged strategic partnerships that enable ecosystem players to foster innovation in the financial technology space. Nihal assumed other responsibilities such as the Head of Marketing for MEA and Head of Global Campaigns during her tenor at Temenos.

She also has startup growth experience, having been the Marketing Manager of Fawry; a fintech company that Mashable named among the top 15 startups to watch in Africa. In 2015, Fawry became one of the top five international acquisitions in the MENA Fintech industry.

With 16 years of experience in various leadership roles, Nihal participated in advisory and and mentorship programs to early stage fintech startups in the MENA region.

Connect with her on www.linkedin.com/in/nihalabughattas

Rahul Jayakar

GTS Trade Head | Noor Bank

Rahul Jayakar, Global Transaction Services Trade Head, Noor Bank

Rahul Jayakar is Global Transaction Services Trade Head at Noor Bank. In this role, Rahul is responsible for developing the bank's Trade business.

Prior to joining Noor Bank, Rahul worked as Head of Global Transaction services, Products & Trade at Mashreq Bank PSC. Earlier, Rahul completed a successful tenure at Standard Chartered Bank, holding a number of roles including that of Executive Director – Transaction Banking for Strategic Clients Coverage Group, and Director and Head of Transaction Banking for South India.

Rahul has worked in wholesale banking for the majority of his career in the client coverage, sales and products domain, as well as in distribution at leading Financial Institutions.

Rahul was featured in Global Finance’s Who’s Who in Treasury & Cash Management list. He is also Vice Chairman of International Chamber of Commerce’s (ICC) UAE chapter, and continues to be associated with its steering committee.

Rahul holds an MBA from Sydenham Institute of Management Studies, Research and Entrepreneurship Education, Mumbai, India, and a B Sc in Physics & Electronics from R. D. National College, Mumbai.

Peter Tavener

CFO & COO | Beehive UAE

Peter is part of the founding strategic management team at Beehive where he is the Group COO and CFO. Beehive is the GCC’s first digital marketplace for SMEs that connects creditworthy businesses with smart investors. It is the only regulated P2P platform in MENA (regulated by the DFSA and now the CBB). Beehive has written $100m of financing across the platform and has 10,000 registered investors since it launched in November 2014. Peter is now focused on opening the business in Saudi and Bahrain in 2019 and strategic partnerships across the region.

Prior to Beehive, Peter was Managing Director at BDO Corporate Finance in the DIFC which he co-established in 2009. He advised SMEs and business owners across the GCC and led a broad range of Middle East and International transactions. Prior to that, Peter was in London where he focused on cross-border M&A and International IPOs.

Peter is a recognised speaker on fintech and regulatory frameworks and is a mentor to a number of tech start-ups in the UAE.

Peter is a fellow of the Chartered Accountants of England & Wales.

Arup Roy

Head of Transaction Banking | SABB

Arup Roy, Head of Integration & Transformation, Saudi British Bank, Corporate & Institutional Banking

Arup Roy is responsible for doing over all transformation for wholesale banking of Saudi British bank. Prior to this role he was responsible for the Transaction Banking business for The Saudi British Bank (SABB). Which covered management, product, development, sales and support of payments and cash management services, guarantees, trade and supply chain and e-business solutions. He took up this role during the end of 2009 and has since taken SABB to become one of the key players within the KSA Transaction Banking space. He has more than 20 years of experience in banking and has worked in a number of corporate banking roles for HSBC across Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.

Prior to moving to Riyadh, Arup was the Regional Head of HSBC's Transaction Banking business responsible for nine countries spread across Sub-Saharan, Africa. Based out of Johannesburg, he also functioned as the Head of Corporate & Institutional Banking and was responsible for the entire Operations for HSBC Africa between 2004-2008.

Arup was the Head of Cash Management Operations for India based out of Mumbai and was responsible for PAN India Cash Management Operations & Client Management of HSBC India. Arup is a graduate and holds a Banking and Management degree.

Max di Gregorio

Partner | A.T. Kearney

Max Di Gregorio, Partner, A.T. Kearney

Max is a Partner in the Digital Transformation practice at A.T. Kearney Middle East. He has 20+ years of experience in management and technology consulting as trusted advisor to CxOs, executive teams and public sectors officials. Max has deep expertise in market and segment entry strategy, digital business models, front-office transformation, operations automation, payments, blockchain, emerging technologies and large scale system integration fully acquired in international projects across +15 countries including emerging markets (UAE, KSA, Egypt, Russia, Eastern Europe and Turkey).

Max collaborates with major regional and international business magazines (Forbes, Arabian Business, Middle East Insurance Review) and is a guest speaker at primary conferences on topics related to digital innovation and financial services transformation.

Prior to joining A.T. Kearney Max was a Partner, Digital and Technology Consulting FS MENA leader, at PwC and a Managing Director at Accenture Strategy.

Mohamed Damak

Global Head of Islamic Finance | S&P Global Ratings

is a Senior Director within the Financial Services at S&P Global Ratings. He covers financial institutions in the Middle East and Africa region. Mohamed is also the Global Head of Islamic Finance within S&P Global Ratings, leading a global team of Islamic Finance analysts. Before re-joining S&P Global Ratings, Mohamed worked as a Principal Credit Risk Officer for the African Development Bank in Tunis. From 2006 to 2010, Mohamed worked for S&P Global Ratings covering conventional and Islamic financial institutions in the Middle East and North Africa region. Mohamed holds a PhD in Finance and Master in “Money, Banking and Finance” from University of Paris 2, Pantheon Assas and a Master degree in Financial Institutions Management from Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Tunis.

Shridhar Iyer

Head of Marketing and Head of Mashreq NEO | Mashreq Bank

Sridhar Iyer, Head of Mashreq Neo and Head of Mashreq Bank Marketing

Sridhar Iyer was appointed Head of Mashreq Neo and Head of Marketing for Mashreq Bank in February 2018.

Sridhar held a number of senior positions with Citibank and Lloyds Bank in India and the UK. He first joined Citibank in 1996, where he was responsible for setting up their e-commerce business before becoming the Digital Banking Head for Citibank India in 2003. He has also worked for Citibank in London, where he undertook a variety of senior roles for EMEA before joining the Lloyds Banking Group UK. Subsequently, he re-joined Citibank India as head for Digital Banking and Innovation Council.

Sridhar is senior banker with over 25 years of experience particularly in the areas of Digital Banking, Innovation and Online Sales & Marketing.

Sridhar has been a consistent champion of digitalization in the banking industry and drove growth in online customer acquisitions in his previous roles. He has extensive experience across the suite of retail banking products and customer-focused innovations in the digital and mobile space.

Motasim Iqbal

Head, Transaction Banking, UAE | Standard Chartered

Motasim Hasan Iqbal, Managing Director & Regional Head Transaction Banking – Middle East & North Africa, Standard Chartered

Motasim Iqbal is the Regional Head and Managing Director, Transaction Banking for Standard Chartered Bank MENA as of December 2015. In this role he is responsible for the Bank’s Cash Management, Trade Finance and Securities Services Business for the MENA region.

Prior to this, Motasim was the Head of Transaction Banking for Standard Chartered Bank Singapore since January 2013. He was previously the Regional Head for Transaction Banking for the banks segment in the Middle East North Africa and Pakistan (MENAP) region.

Motasim joined the Wholesale Banking business at Standard Chartered in 1997 and was appointed the Head of Transaction Banking for Pakistan in 2003. In 2006, he moved to Dubai to head the Financial Institutions segment within Transaction Banking across MENAP. Prior to joining Standard Chartered, Motasim began his career as an Assistant Manager in the Treasury Division of Shell Pakistan Limited.

George Stoyanov

Partner, Transformation Advisory | Grant Thornton UAE

George is a Partner for Operational Advisory at Grant Thornton UAE. He has over 18 years of professional experience within advisory gained across projects in the United States, Europe and the Middle East. He has worked previously for Ernst & Young, PwC, Arthur Andersen and Kraft. He has extensive experience in Corporate Governance, Risk Management and Internal Audit. He has serviced the financial services industry, including banks, regulators, private equity and insurance companies, in addition to clients in the real estate, telecom and oil & gas sectors.

George led the risk transformation governance of a major Islamic bank with over 40 projects and managed several Internal Controls Review engagements for major financial institutions including insurance companies. He has also managed the implementation set-up and training for corporate governance at major banking clients and investment company association, in addition to internal audit management systems implementation and trainings across various industries and clients. Moreover, he has performed the review and update of insurance company organizational structure. Given his extensive experience in the financial services industry, he can bring value to the company by improving performance, enhancing efficiency, helping in growth and expansion, and maximizing profits.

Throughout his career, George has helped clients develop their policies, procedures, delegation-of-authority matrices and organizational structures, including operating models and governance frameworks. In addition, he has performed finance benchmarking and improvement solutions, feasibility studies, stakeholder management, corporate governance, and risk management across industries and clients.

Veenu Mittal

Partner | Grant Thornton UAE

Veenu Mittal is an Audit Partner at Grant Thornton UAE. She has over 19 years of experience in providing Audit and non-Audit services, of which 14 years is at servicing a wide variety of Banking and Capital Market institutions in London and 5 years is in Dubai and India servicing both Financial Services and non Financial Services clients.

Prior to joining Grant Thornton UAE, Veenu headed the Financial Benchmarks and Indices Assurance Practice at EY London. She specialises in regulatory compliance. Her portfolio of clients included major UK and global SIFIs who are benchmark and indices contributors, administrators and users, including indices publishers and exchange group. Veenu sat on the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales’ (ICAEW) Benchmarks working group and on the Bank of England Risk Free Rate – Communications & Outreach work group.

Veenu was on a long term secondment at t e UK Regulator (FSA and then the PRA) from October 2011 to July 2013 in their Policy Division, where she was the Policy Lead on internal audit, external audit and IFRS 9 accounting work streams. She represented the UK regulator at external forums including international bodies, and supported the UK regulator’s Leadership as subject matter expert.

Sam Quawasmi

Co-CEO & Co-founder | Eureeca

Sam Quawasmi is the Co-CEO and Co-founder of Eureeca. Along with his co-founder Chris Thomas, Sam launched Eureeca in Dubai in 2013, and it has since grown into a cross-continent platform globally, having received regulatory approval from the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (with a Branch Office in the Netherlands authorized by the Netherlands Authority for Financial Markets and a Representative Office in Dubai authorized by the Dubai Financial Services Authority) and the Malaysian Securities Commission.

From its offices in Dubai, London, Kuala Lumpur, and Holland, Eureeca offers high-yield potential investment opportunities from the Middle East, Europe, and Southeast Asia to its investor network who range from casual and angel investors to institutional firms. Businesses raising funds can leverage this network for capital, strategic connections, and expansion into new markets.

Eureeca was recently ranked #18 in the Forbes “Top 100 Startups in the Arab World 2017” and won “Innovator of the Year” by Forbes in 2017. Other accolades include “Innovator of the Year” at the 2014 Gulf Business Awards and “Most Innovative Online Platform” by Frost and Sullivan in 2015.

Sam has 14 years experience working for international investment banks in London and MENA-region investment banks in Dubai. Prior to founding Eureeca, he served as Director for MENA Equities at Arqaam Capital, and Vice President of Equity Capital Markets at SHUAA Capital. Sam received an MSc in International Capital Markets from the University of Brighton in the United Kingdom in 2001.

Abdulla Almoayed

CEO | Almoayed Technologies

Abdulla Almoayed is the founder and CEO of Almoayed Technologies, a privately owned investment and digital infrastructure provider, serving governments and banks in the Kingdom of Bahrain and across the MENA region.

Abdulla’s career started as an investment banker with a focus on asset management across different asset classes particularly real estate, private equity and most recently venture capital.

Being a technologist at heart, Abdulla returned to Bahrain in 2016 to establish Almoayed Technologies - with a clear vision to drive and accelerate the region’s digital transformation into a world leading digital economy.

By combining 15 years of investment management experience with a host of global partnerships with technology innovators, Abdulla is cultivating an unparalleled digital infrastructure in the region, in an effort to support and attract the world’s most advanced skills to enable positive social and economic change in the MENA region.

Almoayed Technologies invests in transformative companies, which address important issues in different sectors, including Fintech, Healthcare, Education, Logistics, and Cybersecurity.

Abdulla holds an MBA from the London Business School and a BABM with Honours from the University of Westminster, London.

Mark Chahwan

Co-founder & CEO | Sarwa

Mark Chahwan co-founded Sarwa after years of consulting for Canada’s largest financial institutions, as part of Accenture Strategy’s Financial Services practice. Prior to Accenture, Mark worked in asset management at Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec (CDPQ), one of Canada’s largest pension funds with $270B+ in AUM. Mark earned his BComm. from McGill University where he studied finance and entrepreneurship. He was recognized as a Forbes Middle-East 30 under 30 Entrepreneur in 2018.

Krishnakumar Duraiswawmy (KK)

Head of Trade Finance, Transaction Banking | Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, UAE

Krishnakumar known as “KK” in the Trade Finance fraternity has been with Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) since mid-June 2012. KK is the Head of Trade Finance managing both Sales and Product functions within Transaction Banking in ADCB. Prior to this, KK was Head Corporate Product Management, UAE at Standard Chartered. KK has been a trade finance professional since 1995, having started his career at HSBC and has helped clients in structuring trade solutions which optimize working capital requirements, providing risk mitigation structures for Open Account trade and efficient working capital solutions for Supply Chain financing.

Abdullah Al Tuwaijiri

DCEO | Boubyan Bank

Mr. Al-Tuwaijri joined Boubyan Bank in December 2011 and has more than 29 years of banking experience, including 23 years at NBK. During his time with NBK, he held different leadership roles in retail banking in Kuwait and London. Mr. Al-Tuwaijri got his bachelor’s degree in Finance from Kuwait University, and attended several executive development programs at Harvard Business School, INSEAD, and other reputable institutions.