5 March 2018, Roda Al Murooj Hotel



Kumar Prasoon
Group CIO

Kumar Prasoon is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for a prominent retail chain and honored as one of the Global Topmost CIOs in the Middle East and Africa (MEA), Asia and also at the international level. In this prominent role, he makes technology recommendations for the group’s executive management on the aspects of Fuzzy Analytics, Business Intelligence; BigData, IoT /IIoT, BlockChain, cloud computing, enterprise 2.0, integrated systems architecture and virtualization.

Kumar Prasoon is an ICT Industry Process Centric seasoned Enterprise Architect and Business Process Management Expert. Kumar Prasoon excels at leading cross-functional teams across Americas , Europe and Asia ; coordinating multiple projects with exceptionally strong understanding of the business issues driving software development based on experience both as a seasoned Enterprise Architect as well as Interface Manager with solid approaches towards Integration Technologies / Service Oriented Architecture using external interfaces concerning Systems Integration / Systems Architecture / System Infrastructure support for Mission Critical Applications and a prominent International Speaker on many conferences like Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) , Computer News Middle East , Innovation Enterprise (USA) , International Retail Summits , Forrester Research , Nielsen , International Data Corp (IDC), Arabian Computer News (ITP Publishing), CAXTON GROUP(USA) , SmartData , Expo Trade and Real Time Communications (RT-COM) by Fleming Gulf to name a few.

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Abid Butt

I am a Senior Operation & Management Professional, with MBA qualification, having 25 years of rich and extensive experience, including over 8 years of International (US & Kuwait) tenure. Managed and transformed Technology units of multiple sectors including Telecom, Finance, Healthcare, Academic, and FMCG in utilizing technology as a competitive advantage. Last assignment as Chief Information Officer for a Pan-Arabian organization with a footprint in 8+ Gulf Countries based in Kuwait.

During my tenure took Strategic initiatives in developing Road maps, Implementing Simplification, and produce Operating excellence. The Digital and Social strategy had brought synergies and innovation in unifying the diverse regional cultures. Organized and guided Cross Cultural teams across the Gulf region in implementing Change Management process.

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Karthikeyan Gunasekar
Solutions Architect

Karthikeyan Gunasekar is the Consulting Systems Expert for Verticals & Solutions, EMEA at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company. He holds an MBA in Information Technology Management from MK University-India and has been active in the area of IT for over 15 years. Mr. Gunasekar worked with some of the biggest service providers, including Reliance Communication, during the evolution of MPLS in 2002. He is currently involved with articulating SD-Branch Solutions for the education and healthcare verticals in EMEA.

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Taimoor Dar
Security Architect

Taimoor Dar is a Cyber Security Architect with a decade of focused work in the Telecom sector. He acquired an expertise in Cyber Risk Management Strategy via design and implementation of a SOC and CERT. At present, Taimoor serves as a Cyber Security Specialist at Batelco Bahrain and manages versatile contribution to Cyber Security, Information Security, network security infrastructure and security risk consultancy.

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Joseph Nettikaden

Dr. Nettikaden is responsible for setting the technology vision and strategy for Esol Education. He oversees the integration of technology into Esol's schools' curricula, with a strong focus on the administration, operations and implementation of technology programs. As part of his mandate, Dr. Nettikaden also explores new, innovative technologies to enhance teaching and learning at all Esol Education schools. He oversees the technology departments at all of Esol's schools, which strive to provide an exceptional user experience to students and teachers, by taking advantage of organizational synergies and the standardization of operational processes.

Prior to joining Esol Education, Dr. Nettikaden was Vice President for Information for a market research company focusing on qualitative research. He was instrumental in providing a common technology services platform and integrated services model for standardizing technology operations at Fieldwork Inc. Prior to this, he has played key roles at leading software companies (Infor and CA), in the implementation of customer relationship management software and web-based technologies.

His educational qualifications include a Doctor of Education from Rossier School of Education, University of Southern California, MBA from Northern Illinois University and MS in Information Technology from Northwestern University. Apart from spending time with his family, he is passionate about new technologies and understanding the impact of these technologies on the daily lives of people.

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Rajat Arora
Lead, Global IT - Converged Infrastructure Services

Rajat serves Diebold Nixdorf as the Global Lead for Converged Infrastructure Services. A seasoned IT leader with 14+ years of rich and diverse experience in Global IT Infrastructure Delivery, Network Consulting & Architecture, Bringing Digital transformation to enterprises, and maintaining highly complex Networks at the world's most preferred companies including Microsoft, Telstra (Australia) and Cisco. 

An MBA from IMT, Ghaziabad in International Business, Certified as CCIE#21679 (R&S/DC), TOGAF, Prince 2 Practitioner and ITILv3. He has contributed in varied roles ranging from Global Network Lead, Pre-sales Lead, Technology Domain Expert to Leading Network Engineering Service Operations. In his current role, he is managing and Leading global teams comprising IT Network and Server Architects/SMEs spread across equidistant Geographies, running Network Operations and Managed Services Business for Diebold Nixdorf.


Sivakumar Venkatraman


Jawad Abbassi
Head of MENA

Jawad’s career experience in ICT and Media spans 21 years. Before joining the GSMA as head of MENA in October 2015, he managed the Arab Advisors Group which he founded in 2001. Jawad’s previous career experience includes working as a senior telecommunications and technology consultant with the Yankee Group in Boston, USA. Between 1998 and 2000, he was a Senior Analyst with the communications research arm of the Economist Intelligence Unit in Boston. In March 2013, Jawad acted as Chairman of Jordan’s information technology association. He is also a Member of the Arab Business Forum for Information and Communication Technology ABFICT, and a Member of the steering committee for the UN ICT Task Force of the “Wireless Internet and the Arab-World” series. Jawad holds an MSc in Information Systems from the London School of Economics, and a BSc in engineering from the American University in Cairo, Egypt (1993). In 2010, he attended Harvard Business School Executive Education.

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Ronald van der Breggen
Chief Commercial Officer

Ronald van der Breggen, Chief Commercial Officer of LeoSat Enterprises, has more than 20 years of experience in the telecom and satellite sectors.  A native of the Netherlands, van der Breggen began his telecom career at Dutch Telecom incumbent KPN, rising to the position of VP IP Services.  From 2003 to 2013, he served as Vice President Customer Account Management at SES, one of the world’s leading satellite operators.  Having worked in both the fiber and satellite industries, Ronald knows first hand the traditional limitation for data on satellites as compared to fiber.  With LeoSat’s unique constellation network this will now change as it brings opportunities for customers they never had before.  Ronald holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Nijenrode University as well as a Masters in Business Telecommunications from the Technical University of Delft, both in the Netherlands.  

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Kevin Vachon

As MEF COO since 2006, Kevin leads a team that builds, supports and scales the MEF’s ever-increasing mix of global programs activities.  During Kevin’s tenure, membership has tripled to over 210 companies, representing 43 countries, service provider membership has increased ten fold and MEF certification programs have become globally adopted and widely recognized.

Kevin is a frequent speaker at conferences, a senior MEF representative to the press and analyst community and oversees MEF relationships with open source projects and standards organizations. Kevin is also the founder and Executive Director of MEF’s annual flagship industry conference, entitled MEF18.

Prior to joining MEF, Kevin held the position of CEO of DIATEM Networks Inc., a Carrier Ethernet software company from 2003 to 2005 and was President and CEO of NUVO Network Management, a network management outsourcing firm, from 1996 to 2002. Previously, he held other senior management positions with NUVO and spent 10 years in a wide variety of capacities with Gandalf Technologies, a network equipment manufacturer.

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Omid Mahboubi

Omid is a community builder, a visionary entrepreneur & a cloud evangelist. He focuses on disruptive technologies & is considered a subject-matter expert whose opinion on digital transformation is frequently sought by major stakeholders in the industry. Omid is also a recognized international speaker contributing to many IT forums in diverse geographies. He has founded the MENA Cloud Alliance – an industry body focused on growing the cloud market in the Middle East & North Africa & serves as cloud/big data consultant for a number of technology companies.

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Ajay Rathi
Senior Director, IT

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Mahmoud Yassin
VP, Data Center Management, Group Information Technology

Mahmoud Yassin is manager of the Group Data Center Manager  for System & Security also responsible for Operation Assurance.

Amongst his professional networking groups are the (ISC)² UAE Chapter and he holds the seat of Chapter President elected and hired by ISC2 board members. Mahmoud initiated the chapter in UAE membership of the ISACA COBIT 5 review member group and he has had articles published with InfoSec Island; a reputable group for information security community. Mahmoud has also had many articles published in ISACA like mobile Security, BYOD hacking 9 magazine.

He has contributed to several Information Security related events in the UAE and he is member of various security groups such as the UAE AAA, ISACA, (ISC)² and the Identity Management Institute just to name a few. Mahmoud has 16 years of experience in the Infrastructure Field, having worked over 10 years as Infrastructure Security Architect for multinational organizations such as Microsoft and Fujitsu.

Mahmoud owns a BSE from the University of Cairo and a Master’s degree in Information Security from the University of Fairfax. During his extensive career Mahmoud has obtained professional certificates such as , C| CISO ,CISSP, CISA, CRISC, PMP, COBIT, ITIL, MCSE.

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Catherine Lucas

Engineer graduate of Telecom ParisTech, Catherine has more than 25 years of experience in the field of infrastructures, networks and telecommunications.

Catherine has occupied various positions in large international firms, including within the Daimler Benz group in the IT function, the France Télécom group in the Large Accounts Division or the Elf Aquitaine group where she took the responsibility of the Networks and Telecommunications field at group level. 

She quickly realized that large companies had a strong need for specialized and independent IT consulting and naturally founded Navigacom end of 1998. She has practiced her job as a CEO passionately ever since. 

Within Navigacom, Catherine shares her time between the development of new fields of expertise and offers, the organization of the customer community and the management of the projects on the ground.   

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Srinivas Rao
Senior Manager, IT Infrastructure

Proactive, adaptable & conscientious professional with over 17 years’ international experience in the IT Industry across multiple
streams of business verticals ranging from Manufacturing to Trading, Logistics & Shipping, Printing, retail and Services Industry.

Ability to energize, lead & deal with the speed of change while accepting challenges through a tenacious & questioning approach
drawing on wide-ranging technical expertise. Design business focused IT Strategies to maximize opportunities, interconnect
information management to deliver value based program with commitment to achieve enterprise goals.

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Andrew Grenville
Chief Executive Officer

With over 25 years’ experience across Europe, Asia and the Middle East in telecoms and tech industries, Andrew has a successful track record of holding senior leadership roles at Racal, British Telecom, StarHub and du (EITC). He has been involved in starting up 6 businesses, including 3 as the CEO/Leader. Out of work he enjoys spending time with his family, singing in Dubai Chamber Choir and keeping fit, particularly road running and other physical challenges, most recently successfully taking on Mt. Kilimanjaro.


Mubarik Hussain
Head of IT

As Head of IT for Petroserv Limited I am responsible for all aspects of the IT Infrastructure, telecoms and hosted services for Petroserv Limited and Petroserv Group Companies. I have led large scale corporate business and IT transformation programmes and projects which have enhanced and modernised all aspects of our corporate environment. 

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Mohammad Shahzad
Chief Information Officer
RDK Commercial Investment LLC

Mohammad Shahzad is the CIO of RDK Group. Shahzad is a Technology/Business Process Management leader with extensive experience in ERP, Enterprise IT Strategic Planning, IT Operations, Business Transformation & Process Automation, Business Intelligence, IoT, Cloud Computing across a variety of industries including Real Estate, Construction, Hospitality, Government Services, Financial, Commercial Investments etc.  

He is responsible for IT & Digital Strategy in alignment with corporate strategic objectives which includes ERP Systems and various other systems for very diversified business verticals including real estate development, tourism and hospitality, construction, civil and architectural engineering, and number of exclusive distribution agencies and Joint Ventures with internationally recognized multi-disciplinary companies.

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Dr. Dhrupad Mathur
Associate Professor IT

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Raju Ved
Former Regional Manager Network Operations

Raju Ved , senior networking professional with more than 25 years experience in middle east.

Previous experience : Regional manager , computer network operations for Standard Chartered Bank in Dubai.

Senior network engineer at Dubai office of CASE COMMUNICATIONS (UK)

Education : Bachelor of Engineering from University of Mumbai

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Erik Kreifeldt
Principal Analyst

Senior Analyst Erik Kreifeldt tracks the global market for enterprise and wholesale network services. He manages product development and forecasting for TeleGeography’s bandwidth pricing research, specializing in European and Middle Eastern markets. Before joining TeleGeography in 2006, Erik was an optical networking industry analyst with RHK. Prior to that, he held editorial roles at Fiber Optics Online, Fiber Optics News, and the Optical Society of America—where he covered the first commercial DWDM systems. He holds an MBA from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University and a B.A. from Penn State.


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Ahmad Manzur
Specialist Transport Network Operations, Network Development

Over 10 years of experience in Transport networks with a diverse experience in MPLS, Fiber Optics, Microwave, Network operations center, Quality assurance & Network Performance Management. I had been Associated with Leading telecom players in the market like Orascom, Mobilink, and Currently in Vimplecom Group as Expert Consultant of Transport Network Development.

Major projects in delivering turnkey network rollout for Vimplecom. Recently modernized MPLS-TP Network for Vimplecom. Have a great passion to transform customer needs into workable solutions. Proficient in devising business process frameworks.

I also work as a professional trainer and engaged in different projects voluntary. My area of study include Bachelors in Electrical engineering & M-Phil in Total Quality Management. I am also Cisco certified & ITU sector member “



If you are interested in speaking opportunities, please contact:

Claire Tranah, Conference Producer
Tel. +44 (0) 7747 012 119