Leaders UAE 2016: Meet the speakers
Now in its seventh year, the Construction Week: Leaders in Construction UAE Summit 2016 will see the region's biggest decision makers discussing current challenges and future opportunities
The low oil price may have dominated the headlines since its 2014 peak, but the Middle East’s construction community has responded in the best possible way: by diversifying operations and identifying novel avenues for growth.
Construction Week: Leaders in Construction Summit UAE 2016 will see more than 200 regional decision makers gather in Dubai to take part in high-level strategic discussions about imminent challenges and future opportunities. Check out the high-profile industry figures who will be speaking at this year’s summit.
When and where
Tuesday, 20 September, 2016
Conrad Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Yu Tao, president and CEO, CSCEC Middle East
Yu Tao, president and chief executive officer of China State Construction Engineering Corporation Middle East (CSCEC ME), has 20 years’ experience managing corporate affairs and construction projects across the globe. Under Tao’s leadership, CSCEC ME has grown to become one of the largest players within the region’s construction sector. Today, his firm offers a full range of contracting, design and build, and project financing services.
Wael Allan, COO, Drake & Scull International
With more than 26 years of global management experience, spanning the fields of engineering, procurement, and construction, Wael Allan left Arcadis to become Drake & Scull International’s (DSI) chief operating officer earlier this year. Throughout his career, Allan has achieved strong results in both operations and business development. His specialisms include project delivery, project and programme management, risk management, quality and documentation, and commissioning.
Bishoy Azmy, CEO, ASGC CEO of Al Shafar General Contracting
Bishoy Azmy, chief executive officer of Al Shafar General Contracting (ASGC), has a BSc in construction engineering from the American University in Cairo, an MSc in international construction management from the University of Bath, and an EMBA from London Business School. Azmy is a member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO), and an associate of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. His management style revolves around innovation, technology, and empowerment.
Tom Hasker, MEA MD – property, Atkins Global
Atkins’ managing director for property in the Middle East and Africa boasts more than 18 years’ experience within the fields of client and design management, project management, property development, and construction. He has delivered major projects and programmes across the hospitality, healthcare, retail, and commercial segments in both the Middle East and Australia. His key regional focus at Atkins include the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Oman.
Campbell Gray, MD – Middle East, Faithful+Gould
Campbell Gray, Faithful+Gould’s Middle East managing director, has two decades of project and cost management, and technical advisory experience across the segments of property, infrastructure, energy, hospitality, health, and education. Prior to joining his company’s Middle East business, Gray held the position of public-private partnership director at Faithful+Gould. In his current role, Gray oversees project, programme, and cost management for a diverse array of regional projects.
Dominic Thasarathar, thought leader and evangelist, Autodesk
As Autodesk’s primary thought leader and evangelist for the sectors of construction and natural resources, Dominic Thasarathar is focused on how digital technology can enable companies to achieve a competitive advantage in a fluctuating market. A chartered electrical engineer and technology executive, Thasarathar joined Autodesk in 2011. He boasts more than 20 years of experience within the fields of international construction and capital projects.
David Merritt, senior VP and regional MD – MEA, Hill International
As Middle East and Africa senior vice president and regional managing director of Hill International’s Construction Claims Group, David Merritt has more than 25 years of industry experience. Merritt’s areas of expertise include construction claims, quantity surveying, and industrial arbitration. In addition to his work in the Middle East and Africa, he has assisted in claims and arbitration cases in Europe and the Far East, working with stakeholders from across the spectrum of construction.
Mark Andrews, MD, Laing O’Rourke Middle East
As managing director of Laing O’Rourke’s Middle East operations, Mark Andrews is responsible for driving the development and delivery of the contractor’s regional growth strategy. Andrews joined Laing O’Rourke from Arabtec Holding, where he was chief operating officer. An alumnus of Imperial College London, Cranfield University, he is the recipient of an OBE for services to apprenticeships, education, and training in the construction industry.
Chris Seymour, regional development director, Mott MacDonald
With more than 25 years’ experience in property and construction, Chris Seymour, Mott MacDonald’s head of markets and regional development director for the Middle East and South Asia, has worked across the region. His expertise spans a diverse range of market segments, including commercial, retail, hospitality, infrastructure, and oil and gas. Seymour is co-chairman of the Middle East Council for Offices, and a member of the RICS MENAT Market Advisory Panel and CoreNet.
Scott Lambert, regional head of construction and infrastructure, Tamimi & Company
Tamimi & Company’s Scott Lambert has more than 25 years’ experience as a lawyer within the fields of construction and infrastructure. A former partner at one of Australia’s leading construction outfits, Lambert has assisted developers, contractors, and consultants to manage and overcome legal issues that span the entire industry spectrum. He is an expert in the structuring and documentation of projects, and is also able to provide guidance on managing and resolving disputes.
Sachin Kerur, head of Middle East region, Pinsent Masons
Sachin Kerur, a partner in Pinsent Masons’ Dubai office, has extensive experience in the Middle East and Europe. Kerur advises government and the private sector on privatised and publicly procured infrastructure and development works, particularly in the GCC and India. During his career, he has advised on major projects across multiple fields, including roads, airports, rail networks, commercial, residential, oil and gas, utilities, hospitality, and education.
Riad Nashif, executive VP – Middle East and MD – UAE and Oman, Aecom
Aecom’s Riad Nashif boasts more than 36 years’ industry experience in construction, engineering, consultancy, development, and project management. Nashif has worked on several of the region’s landmark buildings, infrastructure, and multi-disciplinary projects, and is responsible for the overall management of his Aecom’s operations in the UAE and Oman. He is also responsible for developing stronger client relationships across the Middle East’s construction community.
Ian Tempest, director, Faithful+Gould
During his time as a director at Faithful+Gould, Ian Tempest has been directly responsible for the leadership of teams that have delivered technical and consultancy advisory services since the earliest days of public-private partnership (PPP) procurement in the UK. Tempest has extensive experience of channelling private sector investment into public sector infrastructure. He has also undertaken a range of due diligence commissions on behalf of funding institutions in Europe and North America.
Steve Jolley, senior director – project delivery, Bentley Systems
Steve Jolley, Bentley System’s senior director for project delivery, has more than 35 years’ experience of design and construction practices, and boasts a broad knowledge of computer systems specific to the building, infrastructure, and industrial segments. Before joining Bentley, Jolley held directorial positions at Carillion plc. Today, he is actively involved in industry steering groups, and has firmly positioned himself as a leader within the fields of project delivery processes and technologies.
Daniel Xu, senior legal consultant, DLA Piper Middle East
Daniel Xu is a senior legal consultant at DLA Piper Middle East’s Litigation, Arbitration, and Investigations Group. Xu, who has been based in the UAE since 2010, advises Chinese state-owned enterprises, listed companies, and major corporations across the Middle East and Asia Pacific regions. He specialises in international arbitration and cross-border dispute resolution, with a particular focus on construction, engineering, and infrastructure-related disputes.
Nabil Kobrosly, VP for business development, Parsons
Nabil Kobrosly, vice president for business development at Parsons, has more than 15 years of infrastructure and transportation experience in the Middle East and Australia. During his eight years with Parsons, Kobrosly has developed and managed new business opportunities within regional land development and transportation, including Dubai Expo 2020 infrastructure, Dubai Tram, and the Dubai Marina Interchange. In Australia, he worked on several freight and passenger rail projects.
Asif Shafi, senior VP of strategy – Middle East and India, Aecom
As Aecom’s senior vice president of strategy in the Middle East and India, Asif Shafi’s focuses include the identification and development of business opportunities across both regions, with an emphasis on large-scale strategic pursuits. Shafi boasts almost 20 years of experience working across a diverse range of complex projects, including highways, railways, airports, buildings, and mixed-use developments. He has a proven track record of winning megaprojects across the Middle East.
Kez Taylor, CEO, ALEC
Before relocating to the Middle East, Kez Taylor, chief executive officer of UAE-headquartered contracting giant ALEC, gained experience working on projects in South Africa, Mauritius, Zambia, and Namibia. After joining parent company Al Jaber in 2001, Taylor played an instrumental role in transforming ALEC from a small contracting outfit into a multi-disciplinary construction firm with an annual turnover of more than $1bn. Today, he is responsible for more than 9,000 employees. Taylor consistently ranks in the top 10 of Construction Week's Power 100, achieving the runner-up spot in the 2016 list.
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