Wharton MENA Conference 2014

Destination MENA: Unlocking the Region’s Potential

Saturday, April 12, 2014 - Wharton Campus

Panels

Impact Investing

For such a nascent field, impact investing has gained impressive momentum over the past decade. A JP Morgan report describes it as an emerging asset class expected to attract between $ 400bn and $1tn in invested capital over the next 10years on a global level. As, impact investments are defined based on their intent to create positive impact beyond, but not in lieu of, financial returns, there are many challenges faced in balancing both. The panel will focus on the impact investing trends and future possibilities in the Middle East and North Africa thus far. The discussion will highlight the industries where impact investing can be most effective and lucrative while showcasing the key players in the region.

Panelists:

Ahmed Amer - Investment Coordinator, Mercy Corps
Ahmed Amer

Ahmed Amer

Investment Coordinator
Mercy Corps

Ahmed (Tony) has five years of experience in the US, Europe and MENA region in investment banking and financial management, SME development finance and international development. In addition, his experience in entrepreneurship and e-commerce ventures culminated in the launch of a successful Middle East e-commerce venture revolutionizing the shopping industry in Egypt. His deep belief in sustainable development led him to initiate a series of panels in Egypt titled “Choices for Change: For-Profit Development, Non-Profits and Hybrids”. Ahmed now leads the launch of MC Egypt in the US, a Mercy Corps subsidiary investing seed capital in early stage start-ups. Ahmed is a Business & Economics graduate of the American University in Cairo.

Mona Mowafi - President, RISE Egypt
Mona Mowafi

Mona Mowafi

President
RISE Egypt

Mona is the co-founder and president of RISE Egypt, an organization that is mobilizing the global Egyptian diaspora and its networks to invest in social entrepreneurship for development in Egypt. Its mission is to find, support, and scale social enterprises that create positive social impact, are financially sustainable, and address policy challenges of national significance. Mona was also co-founder and president of Egypt NEGMA from 2011-2013, and was Chair of its 1st Annual NEGMA Conference and Impact Egypt! Social Innovation Competition. She was awarded a global health research award for emerging leaders by the Global Health Council in 2011, and was recently awarded the Judith O’Connor Award for emerging nonprofit leaders from Boardsource. She has published numerous peer-reviewed articles and book chapters in her field, and has frequently lectured on the role of people-driven development in Egypt since the January 2011 revolution. Mona holds a doctorate in Social Epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health, where she currently remains affiliated as a Research Scientist.


Politics and Business Policy

The MENA region has remained in the spotlight over the past few years because of political changes brought on by the Arab Spring. Although the dust has started to settle in certain areas, the final outcome remains unclear. To unlock the region’s true potential we must first understand what these political changes mean for the region. Moreover, the panel will address the key policies required to encourage investment and promote trade in the region. Our panelists will discuss nascent political issues in relation to stability and progress of the MENA economies. How has business policy adjusted during this time? What is the region's economic outlook? What risks are still looming? Where do the opportunities lie?

Panelists:

Prof. Nihat Bülent Gültekin - Finance Department, The Wharton School (Moderator)
Prof. Nihat Bülent Gültekin

Prof. Nihat Bülent Gültekin

Finance Department
The Wharton School
(Moderator)

Professor Gultekin has been on the faculty of the Finance Department of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania since 1981. He was the Academic Director for the Wharton MENA Center in Abu Dhabi during 2011-2013.

He taught at the Amos Tuck School at Dartmouth College and University of Chicago before he joined the Wharton School. He was a visiting professor of finance at Koc University, INSEAD, Bosporus University, and University Paris at Dauphine. He received B.Sc. in mechanical engineering from Robert College, MBA from Bogazici University, and Ph.D. from the Wharton School.

He held the following official positions in Turkey:

  • Governor of the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey;
  • Chief Advisor to Prime Minister Turgut Özal;
  • Undersecretary of Mass Housing and Public Participation Administration, a state agency in charge of housing and urban development, large scale infrastructure projects, and the privatization program of the Turkish Government;
  • Director General for Research and Planning at the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey.

He also served as an advisor for Turgut Ozal when he became president.

He served as the Chief Advisor to the Minister of Privatization in Poland during 1989-1991. He was a policy advisor to the governments of Indonesia, Egypt, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Belarus, Russian Federation, and to the presidents Nursultan Nazerbaev, and Islam Karimov.

He served as a senior advisor to the many agencies in the public sector such as: USAID, European Bank of Restructure and Development, International Finance Corporation, the World Bank, Istanbul Stock Exchange, OECD, UNDP, and Capital Markets Board of Turkey, Institute of Banking of the Saudi Monetary Agency,. He was a consultant for many international firm including Charles River Associates, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley & Co., Rothchild & Cie, IBM, Merck and Co., Citicorp, Chemical Bank, Barclays Bank, Merrill Lynch, Namura Securities, Arab National Bank in Riyadh, and the Dubai World.

He was the Chairman of the Board of Sumerbank, a state owned conglomerate with 35,000 employees and a director on the boards of Emlak Bank, Westergaard Fund, and Bell Atlantic Mutual Funds.

He is currently on the boards of Limak Yatirim in Turkey, QFS Funds in the USA, and Oasis Capital in Geneva.

He is a founding trustee of the Koc University, Foundation of Ownership Changes in Warsaw, and a former trustee of the American University in Bulgaria. International Business School in Moscow, and International Institute of Business in Kiev.

Prof. Gultekin published extensively in scientific journals.

Dr. Adel Iskandar - Media Scholar and Lecturer, Georgetown University
Dr. Adel Iskandar

Dr. Adel Iskandar

Media Scholar and Lecturer
Georgetown University

Dr. Adel Iskandar is a scholar of media and international communication. He is the author and coauthor of several works including Al-Jazeera: The Story of the Network that is Rattling Governments and Redefining Modern Journalism (co-authored with Mohammed el-Nawawy, Basic Books, 2003). Dr. Iskandar’s work deals with the intersections of media (print, electronic, and digital), culture, identity, and politics, and he has lectured extensively on these topics at universities worldwide. His latest publication is the authored anthology Egypt In Flux: Essay on an Unfinished Revolution (OUP/AUC Press, 2013). Other works include two coedited volumes titled Edward Said: A Legacy of Emancipation and Representation (co-edited with Hakem Rustom, University of California Press, 2010) and Mediating the Arab Uprisings (Tadween, 2013). His forthcoming book is a coedited volume (with Leila Hudson and Mimi Kirk) entitled Media Evolution on the Eve of the Arab Spring. Dr. Iskandar has taught graduate and undergraduate courses at the University of Kentucky, American University, the University of Texas-Austin, and is currently a Fellow at the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies (CCAS) at Georgetown University.

Moustafa Murad - President, One Global Economy
Moustafa Murad

Moustafa Murad

President
One Global Economy

Moustafa Mourad is the President of One Global Economy, which he founded as the international arm of One Economy in 2005. Under Mr. Mourad's leadership, One Global Economy helps provide technology training and relevant content in 18 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East. In 2010, Mourad served as Interim President of One Economy during a period of great expansion in the organization. Previously, he was the principal of Mourad, Warnke & Associates, an international community development consulting firm with projects in Oman, South Africa and Honduras among others. Mourad was also the Director of Planning, Design, and Development at the Enterprise Foundation, the second largest national community development intermediary in the United States. Prior to his tenure at Enterprise, Mr. Mourad held positions as Senior Planner with the City of Boston, and City Planner for the City of Cambridge, Massachusetts. He also consulted for USAID, the Ford Foundation as well as the governments of Egypt, Sri Lanka and the Sudan on a number of development issues ranging from affordable housing policies to economic development and employment.

Aaron Reese - Deputy Research Director, ISW
Aaron Reese

Aaron Reese

Deputy Research Director
ISW

Aaron Reese is the Deputy Research Director at ISW.  He previously served as the Managing Editor of the Middle East Journal at the Middle East Institute in Washington, DC.  He holds a B.A. in Political Science and Religious Studies from Rice University, and an M.A. in Arab Studies from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service.  He has lived and studied abroad at the American University in Cairo.


Venture Capital

The Arab Spring and its impact, in addition to the increase in technology penetration are some of the trends that are reshaping the MENA region. Without an understanding of the current situation in the region, it is difficult to predict the economy’s potential in the following years. However, for successful venture capitals these unique conditions facilitated the opportunity to distinguish top-notch funds with superior investment viewpoints and enhanced the innovation in the venture capital ecosystem.

The panel is proud to host some of the most successful and strategic venture capitalists from the region. What are their key strategies when identifying potential investments? Who are the key players in the region? What is the impact of technology and its increased penetration?

The panel will discuss the key issues faced by venture capital in the MENA region:

  • Lack of series A funding leaves startups hungry for cash. What are VCs intending to do about this?
  • With lack of funding, startups are not developed enough to cross the chasm and scale.
  • The ecosystem needs many more good exits to inspire entrepreneurs and bring back some angel money into the system.
  • The current blurring between VCs and angel investments. What are the implications of too much angel money being pushed into the system? What are the profiles of current angel investors in the region: HNWI vs. serial entrepreneurs?
  • What are the “attractive enough” markets for investment?
    • Obviously there are the startups offering global solutions and have a broad customer base.
    • Are GCC populations big enough?
    • What challenges are faced in investing in Saudi?
    • Is Jordan a big enough market?
    • Are Egypt and Lebanon too risky?
    • Is there more integration between Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia and the rest of the Arab world?
  • What are the big investment themes in the region?
    • Global solutions
    • Arabic content
    • E-commerce
    • Gaming

Panelists:

Shawndra Hill - Assistant Professor, Operations and Information Management, The Wharton School (Moderator)
Shawndra Hill

Shawndra Hill

Assistant Professor, Operations and Information Management
The Wharton School
(Moderator)

Shawndra Hill is an Assistant Professor in Operations and Information Management at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Generally, she studies data mining, machine learning and statistical relational learning and their alignment with business problems. Specifically, she researches the value to companies of mining data on how consumers interact with each other—for targeted marketing, advertising and fraud detection. Here current research focuses on the interactions between TV content and Social Media. Her past and present industry partners include AT&T Labs Research, Mass Relevance, and Siemens Energy & Automation. Her work appears in IEEE Transactions on Data and Knowledge Engineering, Journal of Computational and Graphical Statistics, SIGKDD Explorations, and Statistical Science. Her research is funded, in part, by the Office of Naval Research, Google, and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Shawndra holds a B.S. in Mathematics from Spelman College, a B.E.E. from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. in Information Systems from NYU’s Stern School of Business.

Hanan Abdel-Meguid - CEO, Kamelizer
Hanan Abdel-Meguid

Hanan Abdel-Meguid

CEO
Karmelizer

Hanan Abdel Meguid is an icon in the Middle East Internet World – A prominent female entrepreneur and an active angel investor based in Cairo. Hanan established OTVentures, as an Orascom Telecom Media and Technology Subsidiary. OTVentures is one of the largest Internet players in the Middle East region operating in 17 offices across the region, with 700+ talents pioneering innovative solutions and services in digital advertising, Online publishing and mobile value added data services. Early 2014, she stepped down to establish Kamelizer that aims to accelerate and energize the startup scene in the Middle East. Leveraging on her 25+ years of experience in the technology field, Kamelizer is a an incubator and a company factory launching startups, build them into solid businesses and eventually exit them. Her passion of building winning ventures and her experience in bringing together all key elements required to create companies with great potential makes her determined to take the Middle East entrepreneurship scene from Hype to Reality.

Hanan long journey of success started in 1996, she helped establish LINKdotNET, one of the largest Internet Solutions Provider in the Region, where she as Chief Solution Officer contributed immensely to the company’s success and growth, becoming a “star” company and an Egyptian start-up success story.

Hanan then went on to become the CEO of LinkDevelopmet, Egypt’s foremost software and solutions Company. LinkDevelopment is both a regional and international player in the software development domain and one of the main services consultants in most prominent EGovernment solutions across the Middle East region.

Besides her Middle East region experience, Hanan is a board member of Joyent, a San Francisco based provider of cloud computing software and services and Dada, an Italian based leader in professional online services such as domain name registration, brand protection and online visibility.

As a key figure in her own domain she always believed in the role of technology to improve quality of life in the Middle East. Her desire to sustain and grow talent led to her involvement in the establishment of various communities projects that promote growing Egyptian talent, as well as inspire young developers and promote knowledge sharing outside of business by acting as a mentor in prominent incubators like Flat6Labs and TahrirSquare.

Hanan served as a board member in Egyptian government Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (TIEC), the Egyptian Government’s Center to incubate and stimulate technological innovation and creativity. Hanan is an active member in many academic and business alliances and associations, including acting as Chairwoman for the Egyptian Information Telecommunications, Electronics and Software Alliance (Eitesal), an independent industry body, member of the ICT Core Committee Board of The American Chamber of Commerce (Amcham), member of Advisory Board of the computer science department in the American University in Cairo, and also served as a member of the Egyptian government Information Technology Academia Collaboration (ITAC).

Shayan Habib - Partner, Ideavelopers
Shayan Habib

Shayan Habib

Partner
Ideavelopers

Shayan Habib is a Partner at Ideavelopers, one of the largest venture capital funds in Egypt. The fund invests in early stage technology start-ups and currently has 18 active portfolio companies. Habib serves on the board of a number of portfolio investments including companies addressing online games, e-commerce, healthcare, and finance. Previously Habib served as Senior Analyst at Arrow Capital, a multi-strategy hedge fund based in New York. Prior to Arrow Capital Habib was a Vice President at Lehman Brothers where he led his team in managing a number of client relationships and completing sizable transactions for the bank. Habib has also been a part of a number of entrepreneurial ventures including Taxila, a provider of alternative energy solutions to regions with unreliable power resources.

Khaled Talhouni - Principal, Wamda Ventures Fund I
Khaled Talhouni

Khaled Talhouni

Principal
Wamda Ventures Fund I

Throughout his career, Khaled has been involved in over 30 regional venture investments and has been responsible for vesting and managing over $50m in Series A and Series B investments. His portfolios have included leading regional and international startups such as Rubicon Group Holding, SmartCube, Equinox, Jawaker Games, Akhtaboot, Istikana, Tahadi Games and Nibras.

Khaled began his career as a founding team member at the MENA region’s first institutional early stage and angel investment fund the Arab Business Angel Network (“ABAN”) The core portfolio of ABAN has since been spun out to form Middle East Venture Partners (“MEVP”) one of the region’s most prolific VC Firms.

After ABAN, Khaled joined Accelerator Technology Holdings (“ATH”) the region’s largest venture firm that at the time. ATH was focused on investing in category defining early and growth stage technology businesses in the region.

Prior to joining Wamda Ventures Fund I, Khaled served as Head of Strategy and Investments at Twofour54, an Abu Dhabi government backed entity tasked with developing a media and technology ecosystem serving the region and anchored in Abu Dhabi. Khaled’s responsibility included leading all investment of twofour54’s investment activity. Under his leadership, twofour54 built the region’s leading portfolio of early to growth stage digital and media businesses.

Khaled is currently Principal at Wamda Ventures Fund I, a new $75m Venture Capital Fund targeting the MENA region created by Fadi Ghandour, the founder of Aramex of MENA Venture Investments.

Khaled attended Duke University graduating with a BA in Economics.


Privatization

The privatization panel is going to focus on three industries in the oil producing countries of the gulf region. Power and water and telecommunications used to be industries dominated by the government. More recently, governments in the region have shifted to public private partnerships and privatization models. The power and water industry in the gulf has shifted from a model where the government tenders a construction contract on a build and transfer-to-government basis—the government operates and manages the facility—to a model where private entities are invited to a tender to bid for the financing, building, owning and operating of power and water facilities which the government purchases power and water from.

On the telecommunications side, operators moved from a traditional government owned and operated model to a private sector owned and operated model. Telecommunication services licenses are owned by private entities and are operated by them. This has also led to increasing competitive dynamics within each industry and presence of international firms.

These privatization initiatives have profound economic implications on the countries of the gulf. Privatization of the power and water and telecommunications industries has led to a more efficient, cheaper, and economically better outcome for the states.

Panelists:

Arthur van Benthem - Assistant Professor, Business Economics and Public Policy, The Wharton School (Moderator)
Arthur van Benthem

Arthur van Benthem

Assistant Professor, Business Economics and Public Policy
The Wharton School
(Moderator)

Arthur van Benthem is an Assistant Professor of Business Economics and Public Policy at Wharton. His research specializes in environmental and energy economics. His recent work focuses on unintended consequences of environmental legislation and natural resource taxation.

He received his Ph.D. in Economics from Stanford University in 2012, a masters degree in Management Science & Engineering from Stanford, and his undergraduate degree from the University of Amsterdam.

Before pursuing his doctoral studies at Stanford, he worked in various roles at Royal Dutch Shell, most recently in corporate strategy as an energy economist in the Long-Term Energy Scenarios Team. During his undergraduate studies, Arthur enjoyed working as an evening stock trader at IMC Trading in Amsterdam.

Dr. Saad Al Barrak - Ex-CEO, Zain Group
Dr. Saad Al Barrak

Dr. Saad Al Barrak

Ex-CEO
Zain Group

Dr. Al Barrak is distinguished engineer and businessman of international repute. He has been a pioneer of the Arab renaissance as the most prolific catalyst of private enterprise in the Arab world over the past 15 years.

CEO of the Zain Group from 2002 until his resignation in February 2010, Al Barrak in seven years transformed a moribund, state-controlled telecoms operator (known then as MTC) with 500,000 customers in Kuwait into the international giant Zain, a company that reached over 72 million customers across 23 countries. Over the same period, revenues leapt from $570 million to $8 billion, while the company’s market capitalization went from $2.5 billion to peak at $32 billion, creating enormous wealth for many stakeholders.

Al Barrak also masterminded the creation of the Zain brand, which 2 years after its launch in 2007 was valued at $2.9 billion, the 2nd most valuable brand in the region. Zain became the sweetheart of the telecommunications industry through innovative and appealing media campaigns and ground-breaking customer services.

Al Barrak has received many distinguished leadership awards throughout his professional career: in 2009, he was ranked the 20th most influential telecoms executive worldwide by Global Telecoms Business Magazine. His entrepreneurial taste for risk and his understanding of emerging markets led Zain to expand rapidly across the Middle East and in a single breath-taking and multi-billion dollar takeover to expand into sub-Saharan Africa, where other CEOs were afraid to invest.

At the end of 2010, Al Barrak founded “ILA”, an advisory firm capitalizing on the emerging opportunities arising from the convergence between IT and telecoms.

Al Barrak earned a double major in Electrical Engineering and Industrial and Systems Engineering from the University of Ohio; he undertook Harvard Business School’s Program for Management Development (PMD) in 1999; and completed his PhD in IS/IT Management from the University of London in 2001.

Shafic Ali - Group Head, Principal Investments, Gulf Investment Corporation
Shafic Ali

Shafic Ali

Group Head, Principal Investments
Gulf Investment Corporation

Shafic Ali is the Group Head for Principal Investments at Gulf Investment Corporation. He is responsible for a portfolio of over thirty equity investments with a book value of about $2.7 billion and a market value well in excess of that figure. These investments cover a range of sectors including power generation, water desalination, telecoms, financial services, steelmaking and chemicals, with a total asset base of over $30 billion.

Gulf Investment Corporation (GIC) is a financial institution wholly and equally owned by the six countries (Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, the UAE and Oman) that make up the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC.) It acts on a purely commercial basis, despite its status as a multilateral. It often acts as a co-developer and usually takes minority stakes of 20%-50%.

In his ten years at GIC, Shafic has developed projects for over $10 billion. This includes five independent power and water projects with a combined capacity of 6,600 MW of power and 1.4 million cu m. per day of water desalination, making GIC the largest GCC financial investor in that sector. He has also co-developed GIC investments in telecoms and the largest re-insurer in the GCC, specializing in the re-insurance of large industrial assets.

Shafic was previously an investment banker for almost 20 years in London at Schroders and Citi, and had worked in private equity and industry, principally in France and Spain.


Entrepreneurship

To many, the MENA region is considered an unlikely location for thriving entrepreneurialism, but it is increasingly producing startups that are impacting lives in the region – and the world. New dynamics are reshaping the MENA region; the Arab Spring, increased technology penetration, and a booming generation of youth are some of the trends the region has been encountering. In addition to these changes, entrepreneurs have faced a number of challenges from a bureaucratic economy based on insider connections to political instability that is hindering their growth.

The panel is proud to host some of the most influential and inspiring entrepreneurs to talk about their stories on how they made it to the top. What are the political, financial, and technological obstacles and challenges that startups have been facing and continue to face in the region? What are some of the creative ways that MENA entrepreneurs are utilizing to overcome those challenges? What is the potential of entrepreneurship in the MENA region? Which industries are most attractive for MENA entrepreneurs? Which countries have the best ingredients for success? Are universities and the public sector playing the right role needed to support startups? What should be done to attract and retain the best talent from universities into startups, instead of joining financial and consulting institutions, or even emigrating?

Panelists:

Stephen Sammut - Senior Fellow, Health Care Management, Lecturer, Entrepreneurial Programs, The Wharton School (Moderator)
Stephen Sammut

Stephen Sammut

Senior Fellow, Health Care Management, Lecturer, Entrepreneurial Programs
The Wharton School
(Moderator)

Steve has a career that is both commercial and academic. Outside of Wharton, Steve is Venture Partner, Burrill & Company, a merchant bank and venture capital fund focused on the life sciences and health care. His role there is general management of overseas venture capital funds, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region.

Academically, he currently holds an appointment as Lecturer, Wharton Entrepreneurial Programs and Senior Fellow, Wharton Health Care Management. During his 18 years at Wharton, he has created eight courses throughout the University that he has taught to over 5000 students. Steve’s primary areas of research coincide with his venture activity: health care and biotech capacity building in the emerging markets; private equity and venture capital approaches to economic development; and, the role of the private sector in addressing needs in global health.

During his private sector career, Steve has been involved in the creation or funding of nearly 40 biotechnology, Internet, and information technology companies globally. He is on numerous Boards of Directors including HealthRight International, the Center for Medicine in the Public Interest, Dynamis Therapeutics, Combinent BioMedical Systems, and serves as a senior advisor to Mitsubishi Corporation’s Life Science Business Unit, and the Royal Bank of Canada Strategic Technology Fund. He is also a member of the publications board of the European Venture Capital Association and the Journal of Commercial Biotechnology. He is also lead editor of Scientific American Lives, a new magazine on innovation in global health.

Steve is founder and chair of the International Institute for Biotechnology Entrepreneurship, a non-profit organization that offers intensive training programs throughout the world. His activity with the World Bank/International Finance Corporation (IFC) includes co-authorship of their Bioindustrial Investment Ethics Framework, leader of a major project on global academic technology transfer, the pilot project of which is focused on India. In addition, he is lead contractor on a World Bank project addressing the design of Chinese government-backed venture capital fund.

Steve previously held the positions of Vice President of Development of Teleflex Incorporated and Vice President, S.R.One, Ltd., GlaxoSmithKline’s venture fund. During his career he was Managing Director of the Center for Technology Transfer at the University of Pennsylvania, and held a similar position at Thomas Jefferson University. At the start of his career, Mr. Sammut co-founded and served as CEO of the Delaware Valley Organ Transplant Program over an eight year period building it into one of the largest organ banks in the world.

He holds graduate and undergraduate degrees from Villanova University in biological sciences and philosophy, attended Hahnemann Medical College for two years, and holds an MBA from the Wharton School.

Amine Chouaieb - CEO and Founder, Chifco
Amine Chouaieb

Amine Chouaieb

CEO and Founder
Chifco

As a young entrepreneur Amine Chouaieb shows a lot of talent leading his young innovative company to the top of the international start-ups and winning a large number of awards worldwide. Graduating from a business school and an engineering school, Amine worked as a consultant for two major French corporations before launching his own business Chifco.

Based between Paris and Tunis, Chifco is a customer engagement platform that reinvents the way utilities, telecommunications companies, and facility managers interact with customers in order to reduce energy demand.

He is member of the global shapers Tunis hub, board member of the Symboles foundation and member of the organizing team for the coming PNB NAPEO Tunisia event. Amine is a young active entrepreneur who is involved in technology and innovation and tries to setup a new ecosystem in the MENA region.

Amine is a member of Global Shapers Tunisia (World Economic Forum), winner of Maghreb UC Berkley Intel Global Challenge, winner of the best Tunisian company in terms of energy savings (Tunisian government), 3rd place award of the African Social venture by Orange (Africom), ranked top 100 business man in Tunisia by Entreprise magazine and ranked top 10 young leaders in Middle EAST by Elan magazine.

Cornelius Donnel - Entrepreneur in Residence, Hindawi Foundation / Venture Partner, Wamda
Cornelius Donnel

Cornelius Donnel

Entrepreneur in Residence, Hindawi Foundation
Venture Partner, Wamda

In his 18 years in Egypt, Con has worked in editorial, graphic design, publishing, sales & marketing, advertising, TV production, and website & application development & design. He is best known as the co-founder and CEO of Sarmady Communications. Sarmady pioneered much of the Arabic internet content in Egypt, with online media brands like FilGoal.com, FilFan.com, ContactCars.com, Mujaz.net & FilBalad.com (all highly successful publications in their own right). Sarmady was also the first digital media company to go totally mobile, starting with WAP and followed by media apps for all its flagship publications. Con sold Sarmady to Vodafone in 2011, and has, since then, been very active as a mentor to many of Egypt’s start-ups through organizations such as Flat6Labs, The Egypt Competitiveness Program, and Start with Google. He is now an advisor to Mercy Corps (MC Egypt), a fund for direct investment in start-up businesses in Egypt, which also provides significant entrepreneur eco-system support. Con is passionate about supporting entrepreneurs who are solving real problems in Egypt, and especially interested in a market-driven approach to social problems (impact investing).

Anthony Rabih Kory - CEO, Spreengs, PIM and PIMtech
Anthony Rabih Kory

Anthony Rabih Kory

CEO
Spreengs, PIM and PIMtech

Serial entrepreneur with Lebanese roots, Anthony Rabih Kory created several companies in his native Lebanon in the fields of advertising, marketing and multimedia production. Subsequently, Anthony moved to the US and created Spreengs and PIM becoming the international market leader in retail and corporate video cards technology. Anthony is currently working on his latest startup, PIMweddings, which provides his video card technology to the wedding industry.

Muhammed Mekki - Founding Partner, Astrolabs
Muhammed Mekki

Muhammed Mekki

Founding Partner
Astrolabs

Muhammed Mekki caught the entrepreneurial bug while studying for his MBA at Stanford University and working with the founding team of a venture-backed Silicon Valley tech startup. As an Iraqi-American, he has always been interested in bridging between the US and the Middle East to encourage a mutually beneficial exchange of people and ideas. After building his foundations in the US, he decided to move to Dubai.

Muhammed co-founded Namshi and served as Managing Director from its inception. He developed deep expertise in operations, managing a team of over 40 professionals in logistics, production, and customer service. A former McKinsey consultant, serving clients across the GCC, he was featured in Gulf Business among Arabia’s most powerful “30 Under 30.”

Muhammed studied economics at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and is a Fulbright Scholar with expertise in Islamic Finance.


Infrastructure

Throughout the MENA region there has been increasing difficulty in expanding existing infrastructure and with population growth being amongst the highest in the world, an infrastructure gap has emerged. How can we close this infrastructure gap? Infrastructure—whether in the form of roads, bridges, tunnels, passenger rail, pipelines or power lines—is critical to sustained economic growth and quality of life. Our panelists will explore macro and demographic trends highlighting the infrastructure demands required, possible opportunities for private sector involvement and regulatory barriers which need to be addressed.

Panelists:

Dr. Marja Hoek-Smit - Director/Founder, International Housing Finance Program, Zell/Lurie Real Estate Center, The Wharton School (Moderator)
Dr. Marja Hoek-Smit

Dr. Marja Hoek-Smit

Director/Founder, International Housing Finance Program, Zell/Lurie Real Estate Center
The Wharton School
(Moderator)

Marja Hoek-Smit is the Director of the International Housing Finance Program of the Wharton School Zell/Lurie Real Estate Center, and an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Wharton Real Estate Department and Department of City and Regional Planning of the University of Pennsylvania. Her work focuses on housing and housing finance policies, particularly for low–income groups, housing demand and affordability analysis, the development of monitoring and evaluation systems for urban housing programs, and training in housing finance, housing market development, and urban development.

She has consulted with clients including the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, USAID, the United Nations, the Inter–American Development Bank, and directly for several governments and private financial institutions. Recent consulting activities include the development of a comprehensive housing strategy and subsidy system for the Government of Indonesia, urban housing market studies in Thailand, South Africa, Botswana and Tanzania, the development of participatory approaches for urban and housing development for the governments of Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and South Africa, and the analysis and/or design of alternative housing finance and subsidy programs for the governments of Brazil, Mexico, Indonesia, Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago, and Suriname. She has also prepared national strategies for housing finance training for the governments of Pakistan and India.

Dr. Hoek-Smit is on the editorial board of Housing Finance International and a member of the Working Group on Housing Research of the World Bank. She has made numerous presentations to academic and professional organizations and has published widely. She completed her doctoraal degree at the University of Amsterdam in 1971. Prior to teaching at the University of Pennsylvania, she taught at the University of Nairobi, Kenya.

Omar Darwazah - Senior Manager, OCI N.V.
Omar Darwazah

Omar Darwazah

Senior Manager
OCI N.V.

Omar Darwazah is a Senior Manager at OCI N.V. based in New York City. Previously, he was Head of Investor Relations at Orascom Construction Industries based in Cairo, Egypt for over 6 years. Omar has 8 years of international experience in corporate finance, corporate communications, management consulting, strategy and investor relations. Prior to joining OCI N.V., Omar was a Transfer Pricing Consultant for Deloitte Tax LLP based in Chicago and a Leveraged Finance Analyst for Deutsche Bank in London.

In his current role, Omar manages investor relations for the company’s North American shareholders as well as for OCI Partners LP, a NYSE-listed subsidiary of OCI N.V. Omar also does strategic planning and business development for OCI N.V. in the United States.

In his previous role in Cairo, Omar worked on over US$ 25 billion worth of transactions including mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, share buybacks and various corporate restructurings. Omar has won the “Best Investor Relations in Egypt” award for four consecutive years. The award is based on votes from global investors and sell-side analysts conducted through Extel Surveys by Thompson Reuters on behalf of the Middle East Investor Relations Society. In 2012, Omar and his team also won the “Best Investor Relations Team in the Middle East for Crisis Communications” award.

Omar holds a BA in Economics and Political Science with Honors from the University of Chicago. He is currently obtaining his Masters of Business Administration for Executives at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Laurie Mahon - Managing Director, Global Head of Infrastructure Finance, CIBC
Laurie Mahon

Laurie Mahon

Managing Director, Global Head of Infrastructure Finance
CIBC

Laurie joined CIBC as Managing Director and Global Head of the Infrastructure Finance Group in August 2013. She has had a multifaceted career as a banker, public sector manager, infrastructure executive, consultant and developer focusing on the development and financing of large infrastructure projects around the globe.

Before joining CIBC, she was a senior expert in the Infrastructure practice of McKinsey & Company. Previously, she spent 12 years as an independent advisor, helping numerous public and private entities developing transportation projects in the US, Latin America, China and the UK. From 1984 until 1999 she worked on Wall Street as an investment banker serving the infrastructure markets in both the US and abroad, concentrating on Latin America and the emerging markets; she started her banking career as a municipal banker. Before becoming a banker, she spent five years at New Jersey Transit, where she held various positions in planning and policy until becoming deputy chief financial officer; while there, she executed several innovative public/private financing structures.

Ms. Mahon holds a master’s degree in urban planning from Harvard University, and a BS summa cum laude from Boston University.

Joe Saddi - Senior Vice President and Middle East Managing Director, Strategy&
Joe Saddi

Joe Saddi

Senior Partner and Managing Director, Middle East Business
Strategy&

Joe Saddi is a Senior Vice President and the Managing Director of Strategy&’s Middle East business. He has over 25 years of consulting experience in strategic, organizational, and restructuring services.

Over the years, he has led major privatization programs in such sectors as oil and gas, mining, steel and electricity; advised Middle East governments on sector deregulation and sector policy; and led the reorganization of national oil companies and large corporations. He also works closely with large family-owned companies to help design governance and portfolio strategies.

Mr. Saddi holds an MBA from Cornell University, and a Bachelor of Business Administration from ESSEC in France.


Private Equity

The panel will focus on private equity investing in the MENA region. The panel will address how the asset class will aid in unlocking the region's potential. As markets continue to mature in more developed economies, private equity in MENA presents growth prospects for investors and industries. Private Equity is at a relatively early stage of growth in the Middle East, as the MENA economies are recovering from the financial crisis and the Arab Spring. The panel will attempt to answer some of the questions surrounding the trends and challenges of Private Equity in the Middle East: Do the back-to-back events (Financial Crisis, Arab Spring) present a good opportunity for PE firms to start deploying their money? Are PE firms finding good opportunities in the market? Is PE the best asset class to exploit the large potential the MENA region has to offer? How are PE firms fending off competition with Family Offices on deal opportunities, given the underdeveloped nature of the deal sourcing process? What special challenges do PE firms face in the MENA region? What is the future of Private Equity in the Middle East?

Panelists:

Stephen Sammut - Senior Fellow, Health Care Management, Lecturer, Entrepreneurial Programs, The Wharton School (Moderator)
Stephen Sammut

Stephen Sammut

Senior Fellow, Health Care Management, Lecturer, Entrepreneurial Programs
The Wharton School
(Moderator)

Steve has a career that is both commercial and academic. Outside of Wharton, Steve is Venture Partner, Burrill & Company, a merchant bank and venture capital fund focused on the life sciences and health care. His role there is general management of overseas venture capital funds, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region.

Academically, he currently holds an appointment as Lecturer, Wharton Entrepreneurial Programs and Senior Fellow, Wharton Health Care Management. During his 18 years at Wharton, he has created eight courses throughout the University that he has taught to over 5000 students. Steve’s primary areas of research coincide with his venture activity: health care and biotech capacity building in the emerging markets; private equity and venture capital approaches to economic development; and, the role of the private sector in addressing needs in global health.

During his private sector career, Steve has been involved in the creation or funding of nearly 40 biotechnology, Internet, and information technology companies globally. He is on numerous Boards of Directors including HealthRight International, the Center for Medicine in the Public Interest, Dynamis Therapeutics, Combinent BioMedical Systems, and serves as a senior advisor to Mitsubishi Corporation’s Life Science Business Unit, and the Royal Bank of Canada Strategic Technology Fund. He is also a member of the publications board of the European Venture Capital Association and the Journal of Commercial Biotechnology. He is also lead editor of Scientific American Lives, a new magazine on innovation in global health.

Steve is founder and chair of the International Institute for Biotechnology Entrepreneurship, a non-profit organization that offers intensive training programs throughout the world. His activity with the World Bank/International Finance Corporation (IFC) includes co-authorship of their Bioindustrial Investment Ethics Framework, leader of a major project on global academic technology transfer, the pilot project of which is focused on India. In addition, he is lead contractor on a World Bank project addressing the design of Chinese government-backed venture capital fund.

Steve previously held the positions of Vice President of Development of Teleflex Incorporated and Vice President, S.R.One, Ltd., GlaxoSmithKline’s venture fund. During his career he was Managing Director of the Center for Technology Transfer at the University of Pennsylvania, and held a similar position at Thomas Jefferson University. At the start of his career, Mr. Sammut co-founded and served as CEO of the Delaware Valley Organ Transplant Program over an eight year period building it into one of the largest organ banks in the world.

He holds graduate and undergraduate degrees from Villanova University in biological sciences and philosophy, attended Hahnemann Medical College for two years, and holds an MBA from the Wharton School.

Minoush Abdel-Meguid - Managing Director & Co-Founder, Union Capital Partners
Minoush Abdel-Meguid

Minoush Abdel-Meguid

Managing Director & Co-Founder
Union Capital Partners

Minoush is the Managing Director and cofounder of Union Capital Partners, the Investment Manager of Union Capital Private Equity one of Egypt’s first SME focused private equity funds. She leads the investment management team of Union Capital and also works on post acquisition value creation. She serves on the board of several investments as well as their executive committees.

Minoush served as Assistant to the Chairman and of the Head Corporate Finance Division within Egyptian Capital Market Authority between December 2005 and December 2007. In her capacity as corporate finance head, Minoush has been part of the team leading the introduction of a new takeover chapter as well as working on a comprehensive reform plan for the division. She was the CMA representative in the stock exchange Listing and Acquisitions committees was appointed CMA representative in the board of the Mortgage Finance Fund. Ms. Abdel Meguid managed a team of 10 people responsible for daily operations related to all corporate finance activities within the CMA.

Minoush has more than 15 years of experience in the field of investment banking and investment management. Prior to joining the CMA Ms. Abdel Meguid was Senior Transactor - Resident Vice President, Corporate Finance & Investment Banking North Africa Division at Citigroup in Egypt since April 2004 (nominated for a promotion in December 2005 to Vice President). She also served as a Manager, Investment Banking Division HSBC Investment Company Egypt from up to April 2004. Prior to joining HSBC she was a Financial Analyst at the Investment Banking Division of Goldman Sachs International, London, as part of the European Mergers & Acquisitions team covering M&A, Debt and Equity capital market transactions. She attended the Goldman Sachs International Analyst Training Program as well as the Principal Investment Area (PIA) Training during her work with Goldman Sachs in the UK. Minoush also attended the Chase Manhattan Bank Credit & Investment Training Program within the Commercial International Bank's training. Upon the completion of the program she worked as a Senior Investment Analyst, Private Equity Investments Division of Commercial International Investment Company managing the company’s portfolio in the cement and building material, financial services, food and agribusiness as well as real estate with a total portfolio under management exceeding EGP500 million. She was part of the team that acquired a minority stake in the Sidi Kreir Petrochemicals Company (SIDPEC) as well as a stake in the Egyptian Financial and Industrial Company, Housing & Development Bank, Egyptian International Pharmaceuticals Company and Al Watany Bank of Egypt. Ms. Abdel Meguid has also been involved in major corporate finance and investment banking transactions including: First cross border M&A in Egypt - Orascom Construction Industries (OCI) acquisition of Pakistani Cement Chakwal Cement, Sidi Krir Petrochemicals Company 20% Initial Public Offering (USD 250 million), the first IPO in the Egyptian market in five years and ADR offering for Portuguese government-owned Electricity Company (Electricidade de Portugal SA).

Minoush is the founding president of the Egyptian Young Bankers Association, an Egyptian non-governmental organization that caters for the progression of young bankers from 2003 until her resignation in 2008. She was the sole Egyptian participant at the State Department’s renowned International Visitors’ Leadership Program in 2005 with focus on “Women in Economic Development”. She was also selected by Business Today Magazine as the 2nd ranked Young Executive under 40 in Egypt in 2003 and was the Class Speaker at her graduation commencement at the American University in Cairo from which she holds a B.A in Economics and International Relations, magna cum laude.

Minoush has been on the Forbes list of the Most Powerful Women in Africa since 2011, the renowned magazine has cited her strong commitment to bring about change in the field of investment and entrepreneurship in Egypt as reasons for her selection.

She has participated in several international conferences and has lectured as a guest speaker at various leading universities and think tanks across the world on topics including Entrepreneurship, Women Empowerment, Economic Development, Investments and Finance including at the University of Georgetown, University of Kansas, University of Sydney, Australian National University, the London School of Economics, the World Bank, International Republican Institute and Girls Inc.

Hoda Abou Jamra - Founding Partner, TVM Capital Healthcare Partners
Hoda Abou Jamra

Hoda Abou Jamra

Founding Partner
TVM Capital Healthcare Partners

Hoda Abou-Jamra is Founding Partner of TVM Capital Healthcare Partners, the Dubai-based regional healthcare private equity investment operation of TVM Capital, a US$ 1.8 billion global private equity and venture capital firm. Major responsibilities include fundraising, investor relations, corporate development, and business development for portfolio companies.

Simultaneously, she is the Founder and CEO of the non-profit “think tank” organization The BioExec Institute, Inc., in Cambridge, MA, USA.

Hoda is also the Former CEO of Boston BioCapital, with representations in Cambridge, MA, USA and Dubai, UAE. Boston BioCapital and TVM Capital entered into a joint venture to establish TVM Capital Healthcare Partners.

She has, in recent years, been invited to speak globally on private equity in the Middle East as well as the role of women in business in the Middle East. Hoda has also been featured in articles in the New York Times and in the Gulf region.

Hoda is a current board member of Manzil Health Care Services, a provider of highly individualized home care services for adult and pediatric patients and The BioExec Institute, a non-profit biotech organization. Former board member of Gulf Healthcare International, Dubai, UAE, a regional healthcare services and medical laboratory company. Former manager sales, marketing, and business development for several biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies including Acumen Sciences, Incyte Genomics, Boiron Laboratories, and Bayer Corporation. Former member on several U.S. finance and fundraising committees, including Senator John Kerry's Campaign Finance Committee, the Massachusetts Women's Political Caucus and the BIO Business Forum Committee and the International Subcommittee. She graduated from the Bouve College of Health Sciences, Northeastern University, Boston, with a degree in Pharmacy.

Hossam Radwan - Partner, Abraaj Group
Hossam Radwan

Hossam Radwan

Partner
Abraaj Group

Hossam Y. Radwan is a Partner at The Abraaj Group and the Chief Executive Officer of Abraaj Partners Holding Company in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Based in Riyadh, Mr. Radwan heads the team responsible for making investments across a variety of asset classes. He is also a member of the group’s Risk Committee.

Mr. Radwan most recently served as CEO of EFG-Hermes in Saudi Arabia and as a member of the Executive Committee of EFG-Hermes Holdings.

Previously, Mr. Radwan worked at Goldman Sachs between 1997 to 2009, in both London and New York, where he held a range of positions, including Head of Middle East and North Africa Sales at Goldman Sachs Asset Management. He began his career with JP Morgan in New York and then moved to London where he spent almost four years between 1993 to 1997 in the Fixed Income and Credit Research Division.

In addition, Mr. Radwan served as the Chairman of the Investment Committee of BUPA Saudi Arabia between May 2009 till Jan 2013. He is also a founding board member of Endeavor Saudi Arabia. Endeavor is a US based organisation that supports high powered Entrepreneurs around the world.

Mr. Radwan received a Bachelors of Science degree in Finance from Georgetown University in 1993. He currently serves on the Advisory Council of the McDonough School of Business.


Education

The Middle East and North Africa has the largest youth population in the world, with over 30% of its population between the ages of 15 and 29. However, the region also has some of the highest youth unemployment rates, averaging above 25%. In order to unlock the MENA region’s full potential, what can the education sector do to help young people develop the skills they need to succeed and face the region’s social and economic challenges? How can the gap between the skills taught in educational institutions and the needs of the labor market best be addressed?

Panelists:

Deirdre Evans-Pritchard - Senior Program Officer, AmidEast (Moderator)
Deirdre Evans-Pritchard

Deirdre Evans-Pritchard

Senior Program Officer
AmidEast
(Moderator)

Dierdre oversees the placement and supervision of grantees from Jordan, Libya and Tunisia, and coordinates outreach to universities for placement of Fulbright Foreign Student nominees. Previously, she was Associate Director of International Programs and Exchanges at the University of the District of Columbia and taught for many years at the University of Southern California in Cultural Anthropology. Deirdre holds a B.A. in Modern Middle Eastern Studies from Durham University, UK, an M.Phil. in Social Anthropology from Cambridge University, UK, and an M.A. and PhD. in Folklore and Mythology from UCLA. She was a two-time Senior Fulbright Scholar to Lebanon and has undertaken research in Syria and the West Bank focusing on cultural translation.

Dr. Sherif Kamel - Dean of the School of Business, The American University in Cairo
Dr. Sherif Kamel

Dr. Sherif Kamel

Dean of the School of Business
The American University in Cairo

Sherif H Kamel is founding dean of the School of Business at The American University in Cairo and professor of management information systems.

Kamel adopts a multiple-tier thematic approach that includes entrepreneurship, innovation, leadership and responsible business. He orchestrated the school’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation Program investing in young promising entrepreneurs and future leaders and led the establishment of the university’s Venture Lab focused on sustainable and scalable start-ups that can realize an impact on the community. Before joining AUC, he was director of the Regional IT Institute (1992-2001) and for the period 1987-1992, he helped establish and manage the training department of the Cabinet of Egypt Information and Decision Support Centre. His research and teaching interests include management of information technology, information technology transfer to developing nations, electronic business and decision support systems, his work is broadly published in IS and management journals. He is the editor of E-Strategies for Technological Diffusion and Adoption: National ICT Approaches for Socioeconomic Development (2010), Electronic Business in Developing Countries: Challenges and Opportunities (2005) and Managing Globally with Information Technology (2003). He is the associate editor of the Journal of Cases on Information Technology and the Journal of IT for Development. Kamel is an Eisenhower Fellow (2005) and was member of the Eisenhower Fellowships Alumni Advisory Council (2008-2011). He is a member of the World Bank Knowledge Advisory Commission, Executive VP of the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt, non-executive board member of the Commercial International Bank, board member of the Egyptian American Enterprise Fund, Egypt-US Business Council, RISE Egypt, Association of African Business Schools, and Junior Achievement-Injaz Egypt. He is a founding member of the Internet Society of Egypt. Kamel was Chairman of the Chevening Association in Egypt (2004-2009).

Kamel holds a PhD in Information Systems from London School of Economics and Political Science (1994), an MBA (1990) and a BA in Business Administration (1987) and an MA in Islamic Art and Architecture (2013) from The American University in Cairo.

Salah Khalil - Founder, Alexandria Trust
Salah Khalil

Salah Khalil

Founder
Alexandria Trust

Salah Khalil is founder of the Alexandria Trust, a London-based foundation dedicated to restoring world-class education in the Arab region. Salah formed the Trust, with support from a group of Arab business leaders, in response to the unprecedented opportunities that now exist to improve life chances across the Arab world, and to facilitate the development of a new generation of citizens across the region equipped to become active members of their societies. Underpinning this work is Salah’s vision for a new era of philanthropy in the Arab world – catalytic philanthropy to support a step-change in education – that grew out of his extensive experience in the areas of business, political reform, institutional change, and philanthropy.

Salah is founder and CEO of Macat International, a young company that is developing the world’s largest interactive digital library, across fourteen social sciences and through an integrated multimedia platform. Macat will put superior, user-friendly, and customizable content in the hands of teachers and learners worldwide. Macat's support funds the Alexandria Trust's core costs, enabling 100% of other donations to the foundation to reach their target. The Trust and Macat, which operate independently of each other, share a commitment to catalytic philanthropy: Macat’s investors are committed to advancing, through their financial support, the work of the Trust.

An Arab Egyptian born in Cairo, Salah attended the University of South Carolina for his undergraduate studies. He returned to Cairo after graduation and launched a successful career in business. He also became an active participant in Egypt’s political life, serving in key positions in the National Democratic Party (NDP), with particular emphasis on strengthening Egypt’s economic competitiveness and higher education sector. In 2004, he founded the Egyptian National Competitiveness Council. He also served as trustee of the Ibn Khaldun Center for Development Studies (ICDS), a non-governmental professional institution dedicated to issues of public policy. Salah resigned from the NDP in 2005.

In 2006, Salah took a position at the Westminster Foundation for Democracy, an independent political foundation in London, as consultant to the chief executive officer and the board of governors. In 2007 he obtained a master’s in political sociology from the London School of Economics.

Prof. Safwan Masri - Executive Vice President for Global Centers and Global Development, Columbia Global Centers
Prof. Safwan Masri

Prof. Safwan Masri

Executive Vice President for Global Centers and Global Development
Columbia Global Centers

Professor Safwan M. Masri is Executive Vice President for Global Centers and Global Development at Columbia University. In this role, he oversees a network of eight centers worldwide, located in Amman, Beijing, Istanbul, Mumbai, Nairobi, Paris, Rio de Janeiro and Santiago. The Centers promote and facilitate the engagement of faculty, students, and alumni with the world, address global challenges, and advance knowledge and its exchange. He has been Director of the Columbia Global Centers | Middle East since its founding in 2009.

His role includes extending Columbia’s reach to match the pressing demands of our global society. As an ambassador for Columbia globally, Professor Masri cultivates relationships with Columbia alumni abroad and with world leaders, essential to the continued development of a global Columbia. Professor Masri joined the faculty of the Decision, Risk, and Operations Division of Columbia Business School in 1988 and was appointed Vice Dean in 1993, a position he held for thirteen years.

He was Visiting Professor at INSEAD in 1990 and 1991, and has also held teaching positions at Stanford University and Santa Clara University. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University in 1982; his Master of Science in Industrial Engineering also from Purdue in 1984; and his Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management from Stanford University in 1988. Professor Masri was honored with the Singhvi Professor of the Year for Scholarship in the Classroom Award in 1990, the Robert W. Lear Service Award in 1998, and the Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence in a Core Course in 2000. He has also been honored with the 2003 American Service Award from the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee.

Professor Masri is Founding Chairman Emeritus of King’s Academy and of the Queen Rania Teacher Academy, Trustee of International College, Trustee of the National Children’s Museum in Jordan, Director of Endeavor Jordan, Director of the Luxury Education Foundation, and member of the advisory boards of the School of Business and the Gerhart Center for Philanthropy and Civic Engagement at the American University in Cairo. He has also served as Advisor to Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah, and as director of the Arab Bankers Association of North America, Aramex, and the Nuqul Group.

Professor Masri’s scholarly interests include education reform in the Middle East, and contemporary Arab geopolitics and society. His area of academic expertise has been in operations management, with a focus on supply chain management.

He has consulted and written on change management and operational efficiency in banking and finance. A few of his clients include: Merrill Lynch, Salomon Brothers, Deutsche Bank, Bankers Trust, and JP Morgan.