Speakers

H.E. Abdulla Abdulqader Al Maeeni

H.E. Abdulla Abdulqader Al Maeeni

Director General

Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA), UAE
H.E. Dr. Abdulla Salem Al Katheeri

H.E. Dr. Abdulla Salem Al Katheeri

Director General

Federal Transport Authority - Land and Maritime, UAE
H.E. Mohammed Ben Sulayem

H.E. Mohammed Ben Sulayem

President

Automobile and Touring Club - UAE

Mohammed Ben Sulayem is the Arab world’s leading motor sport figure. A successful event organiser and record-breaking former international rally driver, he is a role model to young people across the Middle East.

In a rallying career spanning three decades, he became the most successful Arab driver in motor sport history with 14 FIA Middle East Championship titles, and established himself as a sporting ambassador for the region.

In 2008, he became the first Arab named as Vice President of the FIA, and the first to be elected to the FIA World Motor Sport Council. In his FIA role he pioneered teaching, research and knowledge transfer initiatives in motor sport, as well as research into key areas such as volunteerism, hydration and safety.

As President of the Automobile and Touring Club of the UAE since 2006, he has built the organisation into one of the world’s leading national motor sport and motoring authorities, with acknowledged expertise in associated training, research and education.

With 61 international victories in the Middle East overall, he won more FIA rallies, and more FIA championships, than any other driver prior to retiring from competitive rallying in 2002.

Under his guidance, a multi-national team of experts has established the ATCUAE as one of the world’s most progressive FIA clubs in both the sporting and mobility fields.

Alexej Luecke

Alexej Luecke

Product & Pricing Manager

Mercedes-Benz Cars Middle East, UAE

Current job is energy Demand side director in Dubai Supreme Council of Energy looking after the whole energy demand management spectrum of emirate of Dubai. Served previously in oil and gas industry for many years as project division manager / Project Manager, handled mega feed and EPC projects and worked as general manager in glass manufacturing company as well. Alexej Luecke is a veteran of the automotive industry, leading a team that focuses on compact cars and SUVs for Mercedes-Benz in the Middle East and Levant markets. Alexej plays an active role in developing and rolling out a regional strategy for hybrid and future electric vehicles. With automotive experience in product and sales, across the Middle East and globally, Alexej brings extensive experience in devising comprehensive product and sales strategies.

Christian Braun

Christian Braun

On-Demand Mobility

BMW, Germany
  • Works for BMW’s On-demand mobility team in the Munich headquarter
  • Part of the roll-out team piloting new mobility models:
    • Project Lead for a Sharing model in Seattle, USA, within BMW’s startup company ReachNow LLC
    • Project Lead for a Peer-2-Peer car sharing model in a European market
  • Background in consulting and co-founding a start-up in the hospitality industry
Christian Soemmer

Christian Soemmer

Managing Director

Cadillac Middle East, UAE

Christian Soemmer is the Managing Director of Cadillac Middle East following his appointment in October 2016.

As such, he is responsible for leading the luxury brand’s strategy and vision in continuing its transformation plans across the company’s eight Middle Eastern markets.

Prior to joining Cadillac, Soemmer spent a total of seven years with Audi Middle East. He most recently served as the Sales Director, responsible for the design and execution for all sales strategies and operations for the brand. He also held the role of Dealer Development Director and Regional Sales Manager for the Middle East.

Soemmer comes from an extensive sales and operational background in the premium automotive industry, having started his career with Daimler AG in Germany.

Soemmer holds the German equivalent of a Bachelor of Arts with Honors in International Business Administration from the University of Cooperative Education Stuttgart & Daimler AG.

Faisal Ali Rashid

Faisal Ali Rashid

Director-Demand Side Management

Supreme Council of Energy, UAE

Faisal Ali Rashid, U.A.E national, a degree holder of Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Dayton, Ohio University, U.S.A 1991. Also, a certified PMP (Project Management Professional). Has a wide and solid experience in energy management including supply, strategy and demand. Has strong background in process industrial plant including oil & gas, power & water generation process, material handling process, glass manufacturing process, etc.

Current job is energy Demand side director in Dubai Supreme Council of Energy looking after the whole energy demand management spectrum of emirate of Dubai. Served previously in oil and gas industry for many years as project division manager / Project Manager, handled mega feed and EPC projects and worked as general manager in glass manufacturing company as well.

Francois Guichard

Francois Guichard

ITS and Automated Driving Focal Point

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), Switzerland

François is a road transport and road vehicle expert dealing with pollution, energy and automated driving. He studied mechanical engineering in a double master degree program in France (ENSAM) and Germany (KIT), started his career in the Internal Management Associate Program of Daimler AG which led him to work in various locations in Germany, in the USA and in South Africa.

He then specialized in the field of vehicle testing and vehicle regulations for the Type Approval of road vehicles. He has advised national and international bodies dealing with safety and environmental regulations linked to the automotive industry.

He has been involved in policy processes in the EU and also in other countries, e.g. Australia, USA, China (Mainland and Taipei) and Japan. In total François has worked more than 7 years in the field of external affairs. Since 2012, François is working for the United Nations in the world of multilateral agreements, as the Secretary of the Working Party on Lighting and Light Signalling, the Working Party on Pollution and Energy and then the Working Party on Brakes and Running Gear, focusing to date on automated driving.

Gary D. West

Gary D. West

Urban Active Operations Manager

GM International, UAE

Gary D. West was named Urban Active Operations Manager across Asia Pacific, Africa and the Middle East in August 2016. In this role, West oversees the strategic planning, implementation and operations management of GM International’s mobility business. Based in Dubai, he works with the Urban Active group – GM’s mobility incubator, and leads the company’s Connectivity, Autonomous, Sharing and Electrification (CASE) efforts in the region.

West brings extensive business-to-business fleet management experience, working in diverse locations in the USA, China and Singapore. A member of the GM Global Fleet Governance board, GM Global Fleet Sounding Board and the GM Global Export Compliance leadership, he was responsible for channel growth, commercial sales, business-to-business strategy and best practice implementation for the region.

West has over 25 years of global automotive vehicle sales, service, and marketing experience, managing teams in emerging, developing and mature markets.

Hamid Iravani

Hamid Iravani

Transportation Planning Director

Parsons, UAE

Mr. Iravani is a Transportation Planning Director, and a member of Fellow Board of Director in Parsons. He has more than 30 years of experience designing, managing, and executing a wide variety of transportation projects. As a transportation planner, he specializes in state-of-the-art strategic multimodal travel demand forecast model development, microsimulation, traffic engineering, routing, logistics, database management, the linkage between land use and transportation, and geographic information systems.

He has developed innovative solutions such as an intersection delay function algorithm that is part of TransCAD Transportation Planning Software under his name. In addition, he has authored numerous publications on subjects such as the concept of New Urbanism, intersection operation, public transit, and the linkage between land use and transportation in peer-reviewed journals, including Journal of the Transportation Research Board and The Journal of Transport and Land Use.

During his undergraduate career, he double majored in psychology and urban studies, ultimately receiving a bachelor’s degree and a certificate, respectively. He also holds a master’s degree in urban planning from Portland State University with a specialty in urban design. He is based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Ismail Makhlouf

Ismail Makhlouf

Managing Director - Middle East and Africa

Bright Box, UAE

Ismail Makhlouf is the Managing Director for the Middle East & Africa branches at Bright Box.

Ismail has been working in the Automotive industry since 2002, involved in many different roles from sales, marketing, product management to network and business development. A professional team player with over 15 years’ experience in the Automotive industry throughout the Middle East and Africa region. He has created for himself a proven and highly successful track record on both the dealership/distributorship side, as well as the manufacturing side.

During his last designation as Deputy General Manager for product marketing in Nissan Middle East, Ismail lead the project on to develop and deploy Nissan SmartCar (REMOTO) in GCC region in collaboration with Bright Box.

In 2017 Ismail joined Bright Box team as Managing director for Dubai office, leading the company’s growth strategy and operations in Middle East, Africa, India, and Turkey.

His key focus is to asset OEM’s in ramping up their regional connected car strategies aligned with their global intelligent mobility vision by bringing a turnkey solution that can be designed and catered for their customer’s needs, while addressing the varies local governments compliance requirements for over 60 countries across this region.

Jan Hellaker

Jan Hellaker

Program Director

Drive Sweden, Sweden

Mr. Jan Hellaker is the Program Director of Drive Sweden, a national strategic program launched by the Swedish government. Prior to this, Jan spent 25+ years in advanced vehicle research within the Volvo Group, most recently as the VP of Transport Solutions & Services. He was also the founder and first CEO of WirelessCar, a leading telematics service provider. Jan earned his M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from Chalmers University of Technology.

Dr. Kathrin Dudenhoeffer

Dr. Kathrin Dudenhoeffer

Rollout-Manager, On-Demand Mobility

BMW, Germany
  • Rollout-Manager for On-Demand Mobility at BMW in Germany with focus on new market development and piloting.
  • International work experience in Strategy and Digitalization as well as market research.
  • PhD about acceptance of electric vehicles in Germany and China.
Kaushik Madhavan

Kaushik Madhavan

Director, Mobility Practice

Frost & Sullivan, India

Kaushik Madhavan heads the Automotive and Transportation Practice (A&T) for the MENASA region. In his role, he will be spearheading the Automotive team and will be responsible for managing the research and consulting Practice. Kaushik comes with an in depth understanding of the growing passenger and commercial vehicle business sectors and on the growing aftermarket opportunities for OEMs in India and the Middle East.

With more than 15 years of experience in the automotive industry, especially in strategic consulting and market research, Kaushik’s expertise lies in competitive intelligence and benchmarking, new market entry and diversification strategies, new business model analysis and evaluation and end consumer analysis of automotive technologies.
Kaushik headed the Powertrain program area globally within A&T Practice, managing and delivering strategic projects for European, Asian, and North American OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers. Kaushik managed a global team of analysts and consultants working on strategic and emerging technology trends in Powertrain including advanced engine, transmission, hybrid and electric vehicle technologies. Kaushik also held the position of Director for the Global Innovation Centre (GIC) in Chennai. As part of this responsibility he was involved in mentoring senior analysts and managers in GIC across various business units.

Over the past 10 years Kaushik has been a regular at various Automotive conferences and symposia in Europe and North America. He has moderated several panel discussions at Engine Expo in Germany over the years apart from presenting at engine and transmission symposia organized by CTI.

A mechanical engineer from the R.V. College of Engineering, Bangalore, Kaushik completed his MS in Automotive Systems Engineering from the Institut fuer Kraftfahrzeuge, University of Technology Aachen in Germany.

Klaus Theml

Klaus Theml

Head of ITS-Middle East

Siemens LLC, UAE

Mr. Klaus Theml holds a Master of Engineering degree from the University of Limerick/Ireland in the area of power electronics. Since 1995 Mr. Theml is working for Siemens in Germany.

Mr Klaus Theml has over 20 years experience in various positions in IT/Telecommunication and Electronics industry, out of these 15 years in leadership positions.

For more than 15 years Mr. Theml is associated to the Middle East, where he has worked and lived from 1999-2005 and now again since 2014.

Since 2008 Mr. Theml is responsible as Director Sales for the Intelligent Traffic Solution business for Siemens in the Middle East.

Marine Gorner

Marine Gorner

Transport Analyst

International Energy Agency, France

Marine is a transport analyst at the International Energy Agency in Paris where she focuses on data and policy analysis for efficient transport systems. She is involved in the development of the IEA Mobility Model that is the source of transport-related data and projections for the Energy Technology Perspectives annual publication, as well as many other reports by the IEA. She works closely with member countries of the Electric Vehicles Initiative, a platform under the Clean Energy Ministerial providing data and knowledge-sharing with the objective of implementing effective policies to promote electric vehicles. She co-authored the Global EV Outlook 2017, which introduces the latest technology, market, and policy trends in the electric vehicle field. Marine is an engineer and holds an MSc in sustainable energy from Imperial College London.

Martin Tillman

Martin Tillman

Director of Transport Planning

AECOM, UAE

Martin Tillman is Director at international engineering consultancy Aecom leading Strategic Planning and Advisory for the UAE and Oman. He leads the disciplines of transport modelling, planning, transport technology, road safety, parking and freight. Martin has been based in the UAE for ten years, beginning with the management of the policy and planning work on the Abu Dhabi Surface Transport Master Plan for the Department of Transport. Previously, Martin has lived and worked in the UK, Puerto Rico, Hong Kong, and Qatar. He is currently working on transit master planning projects as well as providing transport input to Emirate and city wide master planning projects. Martin enjoys the challenge of providing innovative and value added advice for clients and consulting with stakeholders. His key aims are to encourage sustainability, future proof concepts through appropriate measures, and to create truly connected and liveable communities. Martin is a Fellow of the Institute of Transportation Engineers, Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, and the Institute of Highways and Transportation.

Matthew Eglinton

Matthew Eglinton

Senior Policy Advisor and Consultation Manager

Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV), UK

Matt is a Senior Policy Advisor in the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV). He works in designing and implementing policy changes needed to ensure the safe deployment of CAV technology in the UK, thus helping improve road safety, mobility and the UK car industry. Prior to working with CCAV, Matt worked for successive Transport Ministers as a Private Secretary, advising Ministers on complex policy decisions, coordinating the development of their policy remit and ensuring that Ministerial aims were clearly and fully implemented by the department.

Matt is currently working on the Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill, legislation to provide a framework for compulsory motor vehicle insurance to cover the use of automated vehicles on British roads.

Dr. Miklós Kiss

Dr. Miklós Kiss

Head of Predevelopment Driver Assistance Systems

Audi AG, Germany
Dr. Mohamad Talas

Dr. Mohamad Talas

Deputy Director - Systems Engineering (Intelligent Transport System)

New York City Department of Transport, USA

Mohamad Talas is currently working as a Deputy Director-Systems Engineering in New York City Department of Transport, USA from August 2015 up to present.

Mohammed Rizvi

Mohammed Rizvi

Head of Digitalization and Customer Service

Siemens LLC, UAE
Dr. Oualid Ali

Dr. Oualid Ali

Director of Training and Smart Solutions Center

German University of Technology in Oman (GUtech), Oman; President, FutureCitiesCouncil.org

Dr. Oualid Ali has obtained a PhD degree in Computer Science in 2006 from Laval University Canada. After his PhD study, in 2006, he moved to UK to work as senior research assistant in York University and Hull University. In 2008 he moved to the University of Sharjah (UAE) to work in the MIS Department in the College of Business Administration. In 2010, he became the Head of the MIS Department in the College of Business Administration, University of Sharjah. In 2015, he has moved to Muscat to hold the position of Director of the Training and Smart Solutions Center (TSSC) in the German University in Muscat, Oman and he has become responsible of research, innovation training and consultancies. In the field of Smart, Sustainable and Future Cities, Dr. Oualid is considered as one of the international well-recognized expert. He has participated in several smart (future) cities projects as a researcher or as a consultant. He was involved in the planning and implementation of future cities in many domains such as Smart mobility and transportation, smart tourism and destination, smart energy, smart healthcare, smart logistics, smart waste management, smart parking, smart water management, smart education, smart security, smart policing and law enforcement, etc. He has given several training and capacity building courses related to that field. Moreover, he is a member of several organizations related to the area of Smart Cities or Urban technologies. He has been invited in several occasions in local, regional and international events as a guest or keynote speaker in order to deliver talks about future cities and its domains. Recently he founded two organizations: The FutureCitiesCouncil.org and the ArabFutureCities.org where he is the president (http://www.futurecitiescouncil.org/).

Ralf Zimmermann

Ralf Zimmermann

Managing Director

Al Futtaim Automotive, UAE

As Managing Director Automotive Services at Al-Futtaim Automotive Group, Ralf Zimmermann, a German automotive veteran, is actively involved in the launch and implementation of low emission technologies and Fuel Cell Electric vehicles in the UAE. Coming from an engineering background, Zimmermann started his automotive career with Toyota Motor Corporation in Germany occupying various positions in sales, service and marketing. After having held senior managing roles with Toyota in Europe, he joined Al-Futtaim in 2013 and has been since working on creating recycling systems for the organization, as well as overlooking aftersales services for the Group’s automotive brands.

Rubal Dua

Rubal Dua

Senior Research Associate

King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Centre (KAPSARC), KSA

He is a researcher at KAPSARC leading vehicle regulatory policy and shared mobility research using the consumer perspective. He holds a Ph.D from KAUST, KSA, a M.S. degree from the University of Pennsylvania, U.S. and a B.Tech degree from IIT Roorkee, India.

Sachin Chandna

Sachin Chandna

Vice President-Auto Loans, Personal Loans and OD

Emirates NBD, UAE

An architect turned banker, from designing living spaces to financial landscaping. Sachin is an experienced banking professional with a successful track record in key leadership roles within Emirates NBD. He has been instrumental in developing strategy and executing the business plans for the bank’s personal loans and auto loans business with focus on Digital Innovation.  He forefronts integration of technology with conventional banking and has created an amalgam of products that herald digitalization and innovation.

Dr. Shane Rooney

Dr. Shane Rooney

Executive Director

GSM Association, UK

Shane Rooney is an Executive Director at the GSMA on the IoT Programme. Bringing together strategies and synergies across the M2M verticals and the wider IoT ecosystems. Shane had previously led the GSMA’s initiative in developing mobile solutions in Smart Cities and collaborating with cities like Barcelona, Dubai and Shanghai. His team has developed a wider range of Smart City Indicators, Case Studies and Business Cases demonstrating the importance of mobile technology. They also have developed enablers in IoT Security and embedded SIM.  Previously he has been a Group Vice President with Etisalat developing solutions for Energy, Security and Transport M2M solutions for Middle East, Africa and Asia. Before that he has worked with other Mobile Operators, Vodafone, Hutchison and 3 UK as well as launching and divesting of his own M2M company. Shane pioneered early telematics and connected car solutions for Ford Motor Company in the USA and Europe. He has extensive Global experience. He holds a PhD in Communications Systems specialising in Location Based Services and studied Business Marketing at IMD Switzerland.

Stephen Severance

Stephen Severance

Head – Program Management and Marketing

Masdar, UAE

Steve Severance leads the Program Management and Marketing for Masdar City, a low-carbon sustainable city and clean-technology cluster in Abu Dhabi. He oversees numerous projects to ensure they meet program baselines that balance sustainability and economic requirements, as well as program controls guaranteeing each project meets sustainability, revenue, cost and schedule targets. Additionally Mr. Severance leads the development of the technology lines of business including district cooling, mobility, and smart city initiatives. He develops new business models, execution strategies and partnerships with leading global companies to implement the technology requirements. Mr. Severance has 20 years of experience in project and programme management, strategy consulting, financial analysis and economic development. He joined Masdar City from Booz & Company in Los Angeles, where he was an Engagement Manager. During nine years at Booz & Company, he led teams handling senior-level clients and their major projects in the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. He also headed the development of operating models, governance, organisation, processes, and tools required to improve the success of these projects. Additionally, he led project teams in growth strategy, cost reduction and economic analysis. Before joining Booz & Company, Mr. Severance served as Project Director for the nonprofit Citizen’s Network in Moldova and as a Business Consultant to the Peace Corps in Moldova. He has also worked for Sun Microsystems, Wyse Technologies and Amdahl Corp., all in California. Mr. Severance graduated with a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from San Jose State University in California, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in in Business Administration, emphasis Finance, from Cedarville University in the United States.

Tara Tariq

Tara Tariq

Sustainability Monitoring and Reporting Manager

SEE Nexus, UAE

Tara Tariq is a Sustainability Monitoring and Reporting Manager at SEE NEXUS. She is a LEED AP with over five years of experience in building energy efficiency, project management, and urban sustainability. At SEE NEXUS she works closely with local and international knowledge partners to develop systematic tools which enable carbon emissions management and behavior modification.

Prior to that, Tara supported the Energy Efficiency Program at the Emirates Green Building Council, where she led and completed several projects that promote the uptake of built environment sustainability. Her work led to the publication of the EmiratesGBC Technical Guidelines, the EEP online database, and the online Sustainability Toolkit. She also managed and finalized the curriculum of the Building Retrofit Training Program which is now delivered to industry professionals throughout the UAE.

She holds a Bachelors in Architectural Design from the University of California at Berkeley, and a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning, from the University of California at Irvine. In 2013, she was awarded the Don Owen Water Science and Policy Fellowship for her research in policy analyses related to water management for specific industrial processes.

Tim Piper

Tim Piper

Managing Director

Transpo Group, UAE
Dr. Tom van Vuren

Dr. Tom van Vuren

Divisional Director

Mott MacDonald, UAE

Dr Tom van Vuren is a Divisional Director in Mott MacDonald and a Visiting Professor at the University of Leeds.  As an internationally recognised specialist in travel demand forecasting, Tom cannot ignore the uncertainties that current transportation trends and emerging technologies  bring to transport planning. Tom’s @tvvuren Twitter profile states that he is passionate about transport modelling. Since 2006 he has organised the annual Modelling World conference, first in London and in more recent year also in Dubai. He is a past Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Association for European Transport. Currently, Tom is the driving force behind the development of Mott MacDonald’s Future Mobility strategy. He is a qualified Transport Planning Professional (TPP).

Prof. Zef Hemel

Prof. Zef Hemel

Strategic Planner

University of Amsterdam, Netherlands

Zef Hemel (1957) is urban planner. From 2001 to 2004 he was director of the Rotterdam Academy of Architecture and Urban Design. As a member of the board of the Urban Planning Department of the City of Amsterdam (2004-2014), he was responsible for the making of Amsterdam Vision 2040, awarded by ISOCARP, the International Society of City and Regional Planners in 2011. Since 2012 he is Professor Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Amsterdam (Wibaut Chair) and strategist at the Amsterdam Economic Board. Hemel studied human geography at the State University of Groningen and wrote his PhD in history of art at the University of Amsterdam, for which he was awarded the Prof. Ter Veen Prize 1994.