Recent Executive Moves in Banking & Financial Services – MENA

Contact RRA consultant | Kanu Rajguru


December 2023

  • BANK OF SINGAPORE has appointed Shovit Sahai as Head of Product Management Group for its DIFC branch. He reports functionally to Singapore-based Vivienne Chia, Head of Investment Advisory Solutions, Alternative Investments and Managed Solutions as well as locally to Ranjit Khana, Global Head, Middle East Chief Executive, DIFC branch. Sahai joins OCBC’s private banking arm from BNP Paribas Wealth Management in Singapore, where he worked for the last six years as its Asia Head of Structured Products and Derivatives. Prior to that, he spent 14 years in Citibank’s London and Singapore offices serving in various capital markets, advisory and product management roles.
  • BURGAN BANK has promoted Fadel Mahmoud Abdullah to Chief Executive Officer - Kuwait effective immediately. Abdullah will continue to play an integral role in steering the new strategic direction of the bank in his new role. Abdullah is a long-serving member of the bank’s management team, bringing 34 years of finance, investment, and corporate banking experience to his new appointment. He has held multiple key leadership roles during his 25-year-long career with Burgan Bank since 1998.
  • DOHA BANK has appointed Fawad Ishaq as Chief Treasury and Investment Officer. Fawad was previously a Financial Advisor at Investcorp. Before this he was Group Head of Treasury and Financial Market-Sales and Syndicate Group at Bank ABC where he spent over 8.5 years. Prior to this Fawad was the Head of Sales at BNP Paribas for 4.5 years having spent 6 years at JP Morgan in New York. Fawad holds a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D) in Economics from Georgetown University, US, and Bachelor of Engineering (B.E.), Electrical and Electronics Engineering from Washington University in St. Louis, US.
  • JANUS HENDERSON INVESTORS announced it had bolstered its business in the Middle East with the appointment of Marwan AlSaleh as Senior Advisor to the firm. Marwan, based in Dubai, will provide expert guidance and advice leveraging his deep understanding of the investment landscape, including his extensive sovereign wealth experience. Marwan was previously at the Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), where he was Head of Fixed Income and responsible for managing KIA’s Fixed Income asset allocation from 2016 to 2021. Prior to this he spent 16 years at the Kuwait Investment Office (KIO) in London where he held several senior positions and was Member of the Investment Policy Committee. He began his career in the Treasury Department of KIA in 1985 and held several board positions in the GCC, Europe and Africa including Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait, CITA (France), Gatehouse Bank (UK), Kuwait Egyptian Investment Company, Kuwait International Fair and Securities Group (Kuwait). 
  • KPMG has hired Damian Grice as Chief Operating Officer - Lower Gulf. Grice is a Partner and oversee all operations across the UAE and Oman. He becomes a member of the firm’s 8-strong leadership team, which is headed by CEO, Emilio Pera. Grice brings a wealth of experience in leadership to the firm, gained across his 22 years. He has been based in the UAE since 2013, holding several COO roles at Barclays and First Abu Dhabi Bank. Prior to KPMG, Grice was COO at Greenstone Equity Partners in Dubai. Before moving to the UAE, Grice held leadership positions at Barclays in London, among others serving as Chief of Staff for the Global COO and Global Head of Innovation for the Corporate Bank. His earlier career was shaped at consultancies – he worked at PwC in the United Kingdom and as an internal consultant at the Queensland Government in Australia.
  • OMAN ARAB BANK (OAB) announced the promotion of Zahra Abdulamir Saied as its Acting Chief Risk Officer, effective from 1 February 2024 from her current role as Assistant GM – Head of Credit Review, a post that she had held since November 2022. Zahra has been appointed to take over the responsibilities of Amith Singh, who has served as the bank’s Chief Risk Officer for almost two years. As the first Omani woman to be certified in Financial Risk Management (FRM) from GARP, Zahra brings her expert knowledge in the field to her new role. Prior to joining OAB, Zahra gained more than 12 years of experience in the field of risk management. Holding various roles in risk management including Head of Risk Analytics roles with Bank Dhofar and HSBC in Oman.
  • SANTANDER PRIVATE BANKING has established a branch in DIFC as of 1st December and hired Masroor Batin as Regional Head. He’s the former Head of Middle East and Africa at BNP Paribas Wealth Management, and an experienced professional in wealth management. Batin left the French bank in August after his nine-year stint in Dubai and Singapore. Before joining BNP Paribas, he was the Singapore and Malaysia market head for Merrill Lynch. He also spent ten years in New York as an NRI market Director for Citibank and Merrill Lynch, before moving to India, where he led Merrill’s onshore platform for around three years.
  • SHUAA CAPITAL has appointed Hamda Eid AlMheiri to its Board of Directors effective 13th December. Mrs AlMheiri joins the SHUAA Board with extensive experience in the UAE investment industry including through her current position with ADQ, where she currently heads the Government Affairs function with responsibility for interactions with senior government stakeholders and collaboration with industry advocates. She previously led ADQ’s Corporate Planning and Performance Department. Her professional track record includes roles with the Abu Dhabi Executive Office and Etihad Airways. In addition to her role with SHUAA, Hamda also sits on the Board of Presight, the region’s leading big data analytics company powered by generative AI. 

November 2023

  •  AL RAMZ CORPORATION announced the appointment of Yazan Abdeen as Chief Executive of its asset management business. Yazan’ track record spans over 20 years in the MENA markets. His roles have included CEO of Abu Dhabi Investment Management, Head of MENA Capital Markets at SEDCO Capital, and Fund Manager at ING Investment Management Middle East. Notably, Yazan was instrumental in launching and managing the first MENA equities long/short hedge fund in the Middle East. Yazan has been recognized for his contributions and awarded prestigious titles, including Saudi Asset Manager of the Year, Top-Performing MENA Fund, and Best MENA Fund Launch. He has also been listed multiple times on the MENAFM Power 50 Fund Managers.
  • CITI has appointed Carmen Haddad as Vice Chair for Middle East Wealth and Banking business. Haddad transitioned her role as Citi Country Officer (CCO) of Saudi Arabia to Fahad Aldeweesh, CEO Citigroup Saudi Arabia at end of 2023. Haddad will focus on providing senior level dialogue and coverage of key sovereign/government and private banking clients; acquire and deepen business with institutional and private bank prospects; and spearhead the Middle East family offices initiative for banking and wealth. This is in addition to her current involvement in key institutional relationships in the region, including SWFs and other public sector clients. She will, in an advisory capacity, also continue to play a key role in expanding Citi’s presence in Saudi Arabia. One of Citi’s most senior bankers in the Middle East, Haddad has more than three decades of banking experience and has played a significant role in the building of Citi’s franchise in the region having joined the firm in 2000.
  • EMIRATES NBD ASSET MANAGEMENT has appointed former BNP Paribas Wealth Management Saudi head, Michail Samawi, as Chief Executive Officer. Samawi joined BNP Paribas Wealth Management in May 2022, and was responsible for the Saudi business. He led a team of bankers covering the Kingdom. Prior to joining BNP Paribas, he was the Head of Private Banking at Credit Suisse Saudi Arabia for more than three years. With more than 16 years of experience in the wealth management industry, Samawi has held multiple board memberships, including in Jordan SME Private Equity Fund and HBTF Equity Mutual Fund.  Previously, he also worked with Jordan-based Housing Bank for Trade and Finance as an Executive Manager – Head of Investments and Financial Advisory Department for more than 12 years.
  • HSBC has hired Karim Tannir in a newly created role of Vice-Chairman of Global Banking - MENAT. He will report to Middle East head Stephen Moss as well as Greg Guyett, CEO of Global Banking and Markets. In June 2023, Tannir became Vice Chair of JPMorgan’s Europe, Middle East and Africa Investment Banking division after returning from a sabbatical. Before that, he’d been one of the Wall Street bank’s two Senior Country Officers for the MENA region. A JP Morgan veteran of 25 years, Tannir was involved in many of the bank’s major transactions in the region including the IPO of Saudi Aramco. He will commence his new role in Q1 2024.
  • HSBC announced the appointment of Aladdin Hangari as Head of Global Private Banking - MENA, succeeding Sobhi Tabbara who announced his departure with effect from January 2024 having led Global Private Banking in the MENA region since 2012. Aladdin joins HSBC from Credit Suisse, where he spent 20 years, most recently as CEO of Credit Suisse (Qatar LLC) and CEO of Aventicum Capital Management Holding AG. HSBC also strengthened its coverage of Qatar with the appointment of Patrick D’Amico as Global Market Head of Qatar, joining from Credit Suisse. Christian Hiller, Thomas Schaad and Simon Aeschlimann are joining as Relationship Managers from Credit Suisse as well. They will be based in Switzerland and integrated with HSBC’s established Qatari desk based onshore in Qatar.
  • HSBC has promoted Nabeel Albloushi to Head of Markets & Securities Services for MENAT. As a core member of HSBC’s regional leadership team, Nabeel will help to execute HSBC’s growth strategy in MENAT, leveraging the bank’s competitive strengths in capital financing and complex solutions to support clients who wish to invest and expand internationally. Since 2015, Nabeel has led the successful development of HSBC’s regional corporate sales platform and increased MENAT connectivity across key business and investment corridors.  Nabeel has built deep market knowledge and strong client relationships over his 27 years with HSBC.
  • JULIUS BAER has promoted Kunal Sumaya to Market Head Global NRI effective 1st  January 2024. He will continue to be based in Singapore.  In his new role, he will cover NRI markets across Singapore, Dubai and Zurich. He will report to Rahul Malhotra who will assume the role as Member of the Executive Board, Julius Baer Group Ltd and Head Emerging Markets from 1st January 2024. Kunal is currently the Group Head Global India and Japan Singapore. During his 13-year tenure at Julius Baer, Kunal has significantly contributed to the expansion of the Global India & Developed markets businesses from the main hubs in Singapore and Dubai. 
  • NATIXIS CORPORATE & INVESTMENT BANKING has promoted Omar Ben Hallam to Head of Investment Banking - Middle East & CCA. He was previously Managing Director - Transport & Environment at the firm for 2 years. Before this he was Chief Executive Officer and Board Member at Attijariwafa Bank Middle East Ltd for almost 8 years. Omar has also held roles with Arqaam Capital, EFG Hermes and Credit Agricole over an 11 year span. 
  • SHUAA CAPITAL has appointed its current Head of Investment Banking, Wafik Ben Mansour as Acting Chief Executive Officer. The appointment follows the resignation of CEO Fawad Tariq Khan after nearly 18 months in the role for personal reasons and had been instrumental in steering the company through a restructuring. Formerly a Managing Director at Credit Suisse for 15 years, Wafik  joined Shuaa in May 2023 to lead the company’s advisory and capital markets platform, which serves institutional clients across the MENA region. Wafik will look to take advantage of market opportunities in the UAE and the surrounding markets and oversee the next stage of SHUAA’s capital optimisation process.
  • STANDARD CHARTERED formally announced the appointment of Mohammed Gad as Chief Executive Officer of Egypt, effective immediately. Mohammed is the first CEO of Standard Chartered's branch in Egypt. Prior to this, the Bank had operated a representative office. With over 22 years of experience, Mohammed joined Standard Chartered in 2012 and has since held senior roles at the Bank including CEO of Qatar. He was also Country Head of Corporate, Commercial and Institutional Banking (CCIB) responsible for delivering the Bank's strategy. A seasoned banking professional, prior to joining Standard Chartered Mohammed held multiple leadership roles at Mashreq Bank and Arab Bank. Standard Chartered Egypt received its full banking license in November 2022, where it will provide banking services to sovereign and government related entities, large corporates, financial institutions and multinational companies operating in the country. 

October 2023

  • BARCLAYS has appointed Selima Mehiri as Head of Trade and Working Capital for Middle East & APAC. Mehiri previously spent five years at RAKBANK, most recently as Head of Energy and Natural Resources, and has also held roles at Natixis in both Europe and the Middle East, as well as at ABN Amro and energy giant Total.  Fatenah El Danab has also been appointed Head of Trade and Working Capital for the Middle East, after the region’s previous trade head, Sereen Ahmed, took up the same role for the Americas.  Reporting to Mehiri, El Danab joins after nearly 7 years at Bank of America, where she held the position of Director for MENA financial institutions and corporate trade sales.  Dubai-based El Danab previously spent more than 4 years as an Associate Director at HSBC, and has held roles at QInvest, Global Investment House and Gulf Bank. She also chairs the Middle East regional committee at the International Trade and Forfaiting Association. 
  • BNP PARIBAS has hired Jalal Al Marhoon as Managing Director in Saudi Arabia (he started in September). He will report to Ammar Pharaon, who heads BNP’s investment banking operations in the kingdom.  Al Marhoon previously spent 9.5 years at Societe Generale where he was Head of Corporate Coverage for Saudi Arabia. Before this Jalal was at Standard Chartered for 7 years where he was latterly the Head of Project and Export Finance for Saudi Arabia. He started his career with Saudi Hollandi Bank where he spent almost a decade. 
  • DEUTSCHE BANK announced the appointment of Waldemar Rotfuss as General Manager of the Abu Dhabi Branch. Based in Abu Dhabi, he will join Deutsche Bank’s UAE Executive Council. Mr.Rotfuss will have oversight over all activities regulated by the UAE Central Bank. He will work closely with divisional and infrastructure business heads to ensure a seamless delivery of the Bank’s products and services to clients and will continue his current responsibilities as Head of Distribution for Middle East & Africa where he is responsible for the de-risking and hedging of Deutsche Bank's Corporate Bank credit and market exposure in the Primary and Secondary Markets by working with the Middle East & Africa Investor base. Mr.Rotfuss has been with the Bank for over 13 years and managed various roles across the Trade Finance, Lending and Cash Management product suite based at various locations in Germany, Asia and United Kingdom. In his previous role, he was part of the Trade Finance & Lending COO team where he was instrumental for the successful execution of various strategic and regulatory projects and initiatives.
  • DOHA BANK has appointed Sheikh Abdulrahman bin Fahad Al Thani as Group Chief Executive Officer with immediate effect. The former Deputy CEO has more than 15 years of experience in the Qatar banking industry. In that time, he’s held a variety of diverse roles covering retail, corporate banking, international and governmental relations as well as holding senior positions at Dukhan Bank (Formerly Barwa Bank) for 13 years and Qatar International Islamic Bank and Islamic Bank of Britain.
  • EDMOND DE ROTHSCHILD ASSET MANAGEMENT has hired Fatima Asad-Bakhtiari as Managing Director, Head of Distribution Middle East. In this newly created function, her role is to develop and strengthen relationships across the GCC with institutional clients in an increasingly strategic area. She aims at providing access to a wide range of conviction-driven Asset Management expertise with an emphasis on Private Markets. Fatima will be responsible for setting up Edmond de Rothschild Asset Management presence across the Middle East and will report to Marie Jacot, Global Head of Distribution. Before joining Fatima worked for seven years as Sales Director Middle East for Wells Fargo Asset Management, raising AUM across Equity, Fixed Income and Hedge Funds. She previously spent five years at Franklin Templeton acting as Middle East Institutional Sales Manager covering SWFs and Family Offices having moved to Dubai in 2004. 
  • FRANKLIN TEMPLETON has appointed Muneera AIDossary as Chief Executive Officer for Franklin Templeton Financial Company – Saudi Arabia, a newly established entity in the Kingdom. The asset manager is looking to set up an office in Saudi Arabia in the coming months, once regulatory approval is granted. AlDossary will be responsible for expanding Franklin Templeton’s presence and business in Saudi Arabia. Based in Riyadh, she will report to Sandeep Singh, head of CEEMEA & India. With more than 20 years of industry experience, AIDossary joins Franklin Templeton from ANB Capital, where she was the Head of Asset Management. Before this, she served as the Head of Asset Management and CIO for HSBC Saudi Arabia. AlDossary has also held various leadership roles at Mulkia Investment, Saudi Fransi Capital and Banque Saudi Fransi.
  • MOELIS & CO has hired Moaath Alangari to lead its business in Saudi Arabia. Alangari was previously Vice President – Investment Banking at Saudi National Bank where he spent 6 years having started his career with the bank. He holds an MBA in Finance from Pepperdine University, US and a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Finance from the University of San Diego.
  • UBS GROUP AG has promoted Niels Zilkens to lead the firm’s wealth business in the Middle East. Additionally, Bruno Daher, who was originally promoted to be UBS’s top executive for the wealth management division in the Middle East three months ago, will now become Chairman of the division. Zilkens will announce his leadership team shortly. He will focus on the strategic aspects of the Middle East business and winning customers, something UBS CEO Sergio Ermotti said the bank is focused on. Daher had previously headed Credit Suisse’s business in the Gulf region.



Contact RRA consultant | Kanu Rajguru

Kanu Rajguru
Kanu Rajguru oversees Banking & Financial Services for Middle East & Africa and is a member of the global financial services practice. He has over 27 years executive search and recruitment experience and has completed searches in over 35 countries including for the past 17+ years across the Middle East & Africa, based in Dubai.
Mobile: +971 50 845 2830


Burak Gorbon
Based in our Dubai office, Burak Gorbon is a member of the Middle East leadership team and also heads the firm’s Turkey operations. He advises regional and global clients on their leadership teams and boards. Burak’s focus is on recruiting CEOs, other C-level executives and non-executive directors. He is a trusted advisor to a wide range of  Banks, and other  financial institutions.
Mobile: +971 52 646 5256


Nic Cutts
Nic Cutts is a senior member of the firm’s global Leadership & Succession Practice and Head of Financial Services Advisory Services for Russell Reynolds EMEA. He is a (UK) Chartered Psychologist with over 20 years international consulting experience, having assessed and coached many C-level executives. He has led several large scale M&A and transformation initiatives in the financial services sector, where his consulting services have focused on individual, team and organization-wide initiatives.
Mobile: +971 55 560 9820