Welcome to ACT Middle East
ACT Middle East is the network
ACT Middle East is the network for treasury, risk and finance professionals committed to the development and sharing of treasury knowledge and expertise across the Middle East. The ACT Middle East was established to support and nurture the development of the treasury profession across the Gulf.
Chaired by Matthew Hurn, Executive Director – Finance, Emerging Sectors at Mubadala Development Company, the ACT Middle East Committee was developed to provide the ACT team with on the ground intelligence and guidance. The Middle East Committee consists of treasury professionals from some of the largest and most influential organisations across the GCC. These volunteers dedicate their free time to supporting the development of the profession and ensure that the ACT is supporting the local needs of the community.
Meet the Committee
ACT Middle East is supported by treasury representatives from countries across the Middle East and has members and students across the region.
ACT Middle East Chairman
Matthew Hurn, Executive Director – Finance, Emerging Sectors, Mubadala Development Company
Matthew is the Group Treasurer with responsibility for treasury, financial risk management, tax and insurance. Prior to joining Mubadala, Matthew was the Group Treasurer of DSG International (formally Dixons Group) where he was instrumental in developing the company’s treasury framework and strategy to accommodate its overseas expansion into 28 countries.
Matthew has worked extensively in the treasury industry for over 20 years in both the public and private sectors. His previous treasury experience also includes several years at Otis, with responsibility for the UK treasury operations of United Technologies Corporation, a Fortune 500 company.
Board positions: Chairman of MDC Re; Chairman of the Association of Corporate Treasurers (ACT) Middle East and Immediate Past President; Advisory Board member of OMFIF (Official Monetary Financial Institution Forum); Board member of EMI Music Publishing, SR Technics and Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies.
Abu Dhabi (UAE) team
Adam is the Deputy Treasurer at Etihad Airways. Prior to joining Etihad, Adam was the Senior Vice President and Group Head of Global Markets Operations where he was instrumental in centralizing the global wholesale operations team and building out a large multi-location global team. His previous Treasury experience also includes several years at Tesco Plc. with responsibility for managing the Treasury Front office team, offshoring the Treasury support function to India, various financial system implementations and managing Tesco’s financial risk portfolio including liquidity and cash management, hedging and banking relationships. Adam has also spent time working for Kimberly Clark, Marex Spectrum and The Royal Bank of Scotland. Adam holds various professional qualifications and an executive MBA.
Alastair Fiddes is Head of Treasury at Mubadala Development Company with responsibility for the company’s treasury, financial risk management and insurance activities. Alastair has been at Mubadala since 2009 and prior to that worked in Abu Dhabi for InvestAD as head of Balance Sheet Management. The majority of his experience was gained in the UK Financial Services sector where he held a number of positions with a focus on risk management, asset management, treasury, finance and internal audit. He has overseen the creation and development of a number of treasury teams, implemented several instances of treasury systems and their ecosystems and has a wealth of experience in structuring, advisory and execution across a variety of asset classes.
As well as being a qualified member of the Association of Corporate Treasurers, Alastair is also a qualified member of the Association of Chartered Management Accountants, holds an honours degree in Business Studies as well as Investment Management qualifications.
Riyad Joined Arabtec in 2013 as Treasury Director, after gaining 17 years’ experience in Banking , Contracting & Real Estate sectors in the UAE & Gulf. He holds an MBA in Finance and various Financial , Banking and Treasury Management related qualifications.
Ricky has been with Etihad Airways since 2007 and oversees the Group Treasury, comprising of the corporate treasury, corporate investment, corporate and structured finance, and insurance functions.
He holds a Master’s Degree in Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering and various financial and business management related qualifications. Ricky was voted Global Corporate Treasurer of the Year 2010 by the readership of gtnews and is an Honorary Fellow of the Association of Corporate Treasurers.
Senior Executive Positions Held
- Group Treasurer – Etihad Airways
- Group Treasurer - South African Airways
- Managing Director - Andisa Treasury Solutions
- Managing Director - Standard Risk and Treasury Management Services, a subsidiary of the Standard Bank Group of South Africa
Dubai (UAE) team
Laura Ford is Senior Treasury Manager at Majid Al Futtaim , one of the largest developers and operators of shopping malls and hypermarkets in the MENA region. She has led a number of financial system implementations and cash management initiatives and is currently responsible for funding. Prior to joining MAF in 2008, Laura was based in the UK, in the European Treasury Centre of Cargill Plc, a multinational producer of food and agricultural products.
Laura has 14 years of Corporate Treasury experience. She holds a Certificate in International Treasury Management from the ACT and sits on its Middle East Committee.
Lourie Kruger is Vice President, Treasury and M&A at Kingdom Hotel Investments, a leading international hotel and real estate investment company with a portfolio of hotel properties and industry-leading operators in upscale, upper-upscale and luxury market segment. Lourie has 14 years of emerging market banking, real estate and hospitality experience across 35 countries in Africa, Middle East and Asia. He started his career with Standard Bank in South Africa where he was co-founder of the African Real Estate team, a unit responsible for all the banks’ activities across Africa (excl. South Africa) in the commercial property arena. For the past six years Lourie has held the title of Vice President at Kingdom Hotel Investments where he has led the group’s treasury function and held responsibilities in corporate finance and M&A. Lourie is a member of the Association of Corporate Treasurers and sits on its Middle East Committee.
Currently Senior Manager Treasury at Dubai Properties Group (DPG), which is a member of Dubai Holding and is master developer of world class destinations that support the long-term development of Dubai including Business Bay, DUBAILAND and The Walk at JBR. The role is to lead and manage the Treasury function for DPG.
Working in Finance for around 15 years – a decade of which has been within Corporate Treasury. Worked previously at Travelex, Cable & Wireless Plc and AstraZeneca Plc in the UK and Limitless, Dubai World in the UAE. Qualified Management Accountant (ACMA & CGMA) and Treasury professional (ACMT) and a Committee Member of the ACT ME.
Paul has over 20 years' experience as an adviser in the banking and capital markets in Europe, India and the Middle East, having worked at Barings, Cazenove and, since 2005, Rothschild. He is a founder committee member of the Association of Corporate Treasurers (ACT) Middle East, an Honorary Fellow of the ACT and Chairman of the Middle East Investor Relations Society. As of September 2014, Paul has been principal adviser to governments, companies and bond trustees on 103 transactions in respect of over €209 billion of financing across the debt and equity product and credit spectrum since January 2003.
Raphael has over 12 years of Debt Capital Markets experience, most of which have been spent in the Middle East. Raphael joined Rothschild four years ago as Head of Islamic Finance, focusing primarily on providing financing advice to Shariah-compliant/minded corporates, financial institutions and governments. At Rothschild, Raphael has been working with clients such as Al Jaber, Dubai World, Nakheel, Kingdom Hotels, Emaar, Aayan, OIF, Etisalat, Dubai Aerospace, Amlak and the Ras al Khaimah Investment Authority. Prior to Rothschild, Raphael was at HSBC, Dubai, for three years where he was part of the Islamic Debt Capital Markets platform, originating and structuring Islamic fixed-income instruments (sukuk) as well as Islamic syndications. Before joining HSBC, Raphael worked for Credit Agricole Indosuez, the investment banking arm of Credit Agricole (now called Calyon) both in France and Saudi Arabia (with Banque Saudi Fransi where he was seconded from France). There, Raphael was part of the Structured Finance & Syndications team, focussing on structuring large Saudi transactions in the oil & gas, petrochemical, shipping and financial institutions sector. Raphael has been educated both in France (Sorbonne) and in the UK (SOAS, University of London). He holds a Masters in International Economics.
Andrew is a trusted business partner who provides independent financial counsel to public companies, multinationals, family firms and Government Organisations in a variety of industries. He has spent the past 30 years growing the business of KPMG through building relationships in North America, Oman and for past 18 years in the UAE.
Andrew inspires change to deliver profitability targets and maintain healthy working capital positions through expert project management leadership. He has significant experience in acquisition transactions and more recently on sustainability and has lectured several times on these topics.
He is accredited in the application of IFRS, US GAAP and SOX standards for reliable financial data, risk mitigation, & strong decision support.
Arun is the Corporate Treasurer at Aramex. He heads the responsibility of managing the global treasury operations of the Aramex Group that is present in 50+ countries. Prior to joining Aramex, he led Deloitte’s Treasury Advisory team in the Middle East. He also worked at Deloitte’s Treasury Advisory practice in the UK for a number of years before moving to the Middle East. Arun holds a number of qualifications that includes a Masters in Finance, Chartered Management Accountant and Chartered Treasurer.
Rob Farrow currently serves as Vice President for Alghanim Industries. Based in Kuwait, he is responsible for Alghanim’s global treasury and financial services businesses (insurance and consumer/trade credit). Rob is a fellow of the Association of Corporate Treasurers, having started his treasury career in 1985 with Ford Credit. He became the FX manager of Ford of Europe in 1992 before moving to GE in 1994. A very challenging and rewarding five years were spent in Singapore as GE’s risk manager during the Asia crisis. In 2001, Rob moved to Norway as GE Hydro’s chief financial officer, and his GE experience culminated with five years as group treasurer of GE Energy in Atlanta. He became treasurer of Alghanim in mid-2009, assuming his current role in August 2013. During his career Rob has been active in all key treasury areas. In 1995/96 Rob was the leader of GE’s working group to prepare for EMU and introduction of the Euro, and in 2012 led the Alghanim team that was awarded the ACT Middle East Treasury Team of The Year.
Andrew is the Group Treasurer for Agility, a Kuwait based, global logistics company with a turnover of around USD 5bn, operating in over 100 countries. After obtaining a degree in Chemistry and Business Administration in 1990 from Kingston University, he joined Unilever in the Treasury department and obtained his ACMA in 1994. He joined Ocean Group plc (later renamed Exel plc) in the treasury department in late 1994, and became Group Treasurer in 1998. He left Exel in 2004 and worked with a start-up company specialising in trade receivable financing, but has now returned to mainstream Treasury and has moved to Kuwait.
Andrew obtained his AMCT in 1995, and is a member of the ACT Programme Committee in the UK, and a founder committee member of the ACT Middle East.
Declan Sawey joined KIPCO as Group Treasurer in 2007 KIPCO is one of the largest holding companies in the MENA region, owning businesses in financial services, media, real estate and industrial sectors. His role includes funding, risk management and investor relations at group and at subsidiary level. The group has been active in the local and international bond markets, with an excess of $3.5bn issued over the last seven years. Declan was previously Head of Asset & Liability Management for HBoS Corporate in Edinburgh. He has held positions with Gulf Bank of Kuwait, the Kuwait Investment Authority, Ernst & Young, Kuwait and KPMG, London. He is a Fellow of the Association of Corporate Treasurers and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales. He is also a Chartered Financial Analyst.
Ravi is qualified Chartered Accountant and CPA and has over 26 years of experience in Treasury and Finance functions notably in Media and Telecom industries across GCC countries. Ravi is now with Oman Telecommunications heading the Treasury unit and is involved in providing and implementing strategic directions to the fast growing Treasury functions including cash management, investments and corporate finance
Gary is a fellow of the ACT and has over 27 years of finance experience of which 19 have been in treasury across a diverse range of companies, principally multinational, including retail, manufacturing, engineering, logistics and FMCG. Now with OCTAL Petrochemicals in Oman, Gary is centrally involved with financing the growth and development of a technologically and environmentally driven company.
Saudi Arabia team
A seasoned and qualified corporate treasurer, Mark spent many years in various senior treasury roles in FTSE 100 companies as well as running a specialist consultancy company. Appointed in 2009 as Treasurer of the Saudi based Rawabi Holding Company, a key achievement was the financing of a start up marine operation that now has substantial fleet working for Saudi Aramco. In 2013 Mark joined Dar Al Riyadh a specialist engineering and architecture consultancy and diversified holding/trading company. Throughout his career, Mark has been heavily involved in all aspects of treasury, but never forgets the key role of multi currency cash management.
Edward Collis is Corporate Treasurer, Head of Credit & Risk at Zahid Tractor & Heavy Machinery. Zahid Tractor is the leading heavy machinery distributor in Saudi Arabia having been distributing Caterpillar machinery and equipment to virtually all public and private sectors in the Kingdom since 1950. Edward joined Zahid Tractor in November 2010. Prior to working for Zahid Tractor, Edward previously held senior Treasury positions with Virgin Atlantic Airways Limited and Rentokil Initial plc. Edward is a Chartered Accountant and a member of the Association of Corporate Treasurers.