Eng. Atef Helmy
Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Egypt
In January 2013, Eng. Atef Helmy was appointed as the Minister of Communications and Information Technology.
As Minister of CIT, Eng. Helmy Chairs the Board of Directors of the National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (NTRA), the Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA) and the National Telecommunication Institute (NTI). He also chairs the Board of Trustees of the Information Technology Institute (ITI) and the Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (TIEC), and oversees the supervision of Egypt Post.
Eng. Atef Helmy has more than 30 years of solid experience in Information Technology, Executive Management and Business. During his long career, he assumed numerous executive management and leadership positions, including 24 years in managing two of the top 100 Fortune Multinationals covering the United States of America, Europe, Middle East and Africa regions.
Eng. Helmy worked for NCR/AT&T for 13 years (from 1983 to 1996) where he held several Sales, Marketing and Executive positions. From 1992 until 1996, he was the United Arab Emirates Managing Director, leading the organization to a tremendous growth in terms of revenue, profit margin and customer and employee satisfaction.
In 1996, Eng. Helmy worked at Oracle Egypt as Managing Director, achieving outstanding success by growing the operation and the business significantly as well as expanding partnerships with more than 80 Egyptian companies. He also participated in launching the professional training initiative for the engineering and computer science students, in cooperation with the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and the Egyptian universities. Within the framework of this initiative, more than 5000 students were trained; enabling them to step in the marketplace.
In 2005, he launched in Egypt one of the largest Global Support Centers for Oracle Corporation to serve Oracle customers worldwide. This Global Support Center has become one of the most successful references that contributed to position Egypt as one of the top destinations in outsourcing and off-shoring.
From 2008 to 2013, Eng. Helmy was a member of the Board of Directors of the Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA) . He was also a member of Egypt Post Board of Directors from December 2011 till January 2013, a Chairman of the Board of Directors CIT chamber from September 2009 to May 2010, a member of the Consultant Council of the Minister of ICT for Incubators and Innovation from September 2008 to September 2009 and a member of the Board of Directors of the Egyptian Council for IT Exports from 2005 to 2006, he was also a Board Member in a number of ICT Organizations.
Eng. Helmy honorably served in the Egyptian Military Forces for ten years in the field of communications and information technology from 1973 to 1983.
Eng. Atef Helmy awarded his Masters degree in 1981, a Diploma in Computer Science from Ein Shams University in 1979, and B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering (Distinction with Honor) from the Military Technical College in 1973.
Eng. Helmy is a major contributor in developing, supporting, implementing and promoting “Egypt Strategic Master plan of the Information Technology Sector” on both local and international levels. This is in addition to his effective contribution in developing the IT exports industry in a way that positioned Egypt in top ranks worldwide, winning several global prizes for being one of the promising outsourcing destinations.
Eng. Yasser Elkady
ITIDA’s Chief Executive Officer
Yasser Elkady is the CEO of the Egyptian Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA). Since his appointment in October 2010, Elkady has been leading ITIDA efforts to develop the IT industry in Egypt, achieving export revenue of USD 1.4 billion and maintaining healthy growth margins for local IT vendors in the economic downturn following the revolution.
Elkady is a 25+ year veteran in the IT and Telecom industry with solid experience in strategic planning, technology integration, business development, and organizational transformation.
Drawing from his experience in leading Multinational and developmental institutions, Elkady led a large-scale organizational transformation for ITIDA, whereby he managed in few years to build world-class organizational and Human Resource practices within the organization, and to stabilize its financial position, while amplifying its role as a catalyst for development. He planned and executed a number of turnaround initiatives focusing on increasing the IT industry exports (40% growth), improving access to finance (SFD, NileEX projects), enhancing SMEs competitiveness and market reach (MSE initiative worth EGP 30 million), and supporting market development (Export IT Phase II worth EGP 29 million).
Elkady has been instrumental in building on his strong relationships with key local, regional and international stakeholders. He utilized his wide network of relations to crystallize ITIDA’s role as a developer, enabler and promoter of the Egyptian ICT sector. He led several international trade missions, and hosted top level government and Multinational delegations to propagate Egypt as the regions’ ICT hub. In addition, he advocated with different government and private sector stakeholders to avail alternative funding sources for ITIDA’s developmental programs.
Throughout his career, Elkady spearheaded a number of national developmental initiatives. As a first deputy to the Minister of Investment, he led Egypt’s Investment promotion efforts, and supervised strategic investment projects worth USD 16 billion; he also contributed to developing the national ICT and innovation strategy, as a board member in ITIDA, and a member in the Ministry’s advisory board. In addition, he has been acting as an advisor to the former Minister of Transportation.
El Kady’s expertise has been the reason for his selection as a board member in key economic and developmental institutions including Egypt’s General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI), Credit Agricole Egypt, the advisory board of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), the Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (TIEC) and the Information Technology Industry development Agency prior to his appointment as the CEO.
Prior to joining the government sector, El Kady led several notable, highly successful enterprises through periods of significant growth. He started Cisco Egypt from ground up and grew the business by 70-fold, following he led Cisco’s strategy and business development efforts in MEA and Emerging Markets to realize 40% Y-to-Y growth and a business worth USD 750 million. He managed to establish Orascom IIS as the first communication supplier in Egypt, and led Jeraisy Co. to double its market share in a year time.
El Kady has been recognized for his regional achievements. He was awarded the Algerian Government Country Transformation Award (2006), the Jordan Education Initiative certificate of excellence (2005), and The Palestinian Telecom Organization reform recognition (2005). Throughout his career at Cisco, he has been recognized as the Country Manager of the year for 2 consecutive years, in addition to a number of other rewards for Team Building, Thought Leadership, and Outstanding performance.
After earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Electronics and Data Communications Engineering from Cairo University, Elkady received a number of professional Degrees in computer design and communication networks from USA.
Dr. Ahmed Darwish
Board Member, ITIDA
Dr. Ahmed M. Darwish was born in Egypt in 1959. He received his B.Sc. in Electronics and Communication Engineering and M.Sc. in Computer Engineering from Cairo University, in 1981 and 1984 respectively. He received his Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of California, Davis in 1988.
His last public occupation was the Minister of State for Administrative Development (2004-2011). This included three major portfolios; the first was the preparation of the National Policy and Strategy Document on e-government in addition to the planning, administration and coordination of the implementation efforts of the four subprograms, namely; Basic Infrastructure, Services Delivery Over New Channels, State Resource Planning and Integration of National Databases). The second portfolio was the design and execution of the Institutional and Human Resources Development Program. Last but not least, the third was Governance institutionalization including transparency and integrity in government and public sector.
The work done by Dr. Darwish and his team was internationally recognized. Egypt’s Government electronic and web services rank is 23 out of 192 countries on the last UN-PAN report and the program received the best service award both from the UN in New York (2009) and the African Union in Johannesburg (2008). Dr. Darwish was selected by Singapore to receive the Middle East Eminent Persons Award (MEEP)-2007 in recognition for his work and he was an invited speaker to numerous international events, the last was in December 2010 in Paris by OECD on “Making Reform Happen”.
His academic career started in 1988 as a lecturer and post-doctoral researcher with the Department of Electrical and Engineering and Computer Science at the University of California, Davis. In 1989, he joined Cairo University as an assistant professor, where later, he became an associate professor then a professor with the Computer Engineering Department in 1994 and 1999 respectively. During the year 96/97 he was on sabbatical leave with the Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering Virginia Tech; He cooperated on several research projects with the Mobile and Portable Radio Research Group.
He received the Egyptian National Engineering Award for the year 1999. He is a member of few scientific and professional societies and on the editorial board and a reviewer for a number of publications. He shared in the design and development (and hold 50% of the IP) of 2 wireless simulation tools. He supervised 10 PhD Dissertations and 26 MSc Thesis. He has over 64 publications in peer reviewed journals and scientific conferences, 11 invited papers, shared in 4 books, numerous invited talks and few sponsored research programs.
Dr. Darwish was a consultant to a number of international organizations (UNESCO, FAO, ESCWA, European Union and World Bank), government organizations and companies both in the United States and Egypt.
Board Member, ITIDA
Hisham Sanad co-founded egabi Solutions in 2006; an Egyptian IT Services Organization with clients in more than 15 countries in the Middle East and Africa (www.egabi.com). As Chairman and CEO, Mr. Sanad managed to lead egabi to a lucid mission of becoming a leader in the IT services arena within the region.
With a successful 23 years of field experience in technical, sales, management and executive disciplines and the distinguished merit of extensive knowledge and insight into the CIT in banking and CIT technology & market trends at large; Hisham led egabi to a remarkable productivity and healthy KPI’s, becoming a first level partner for major multinational technology vendors and a recognized award winner year after year. Mr. Sanad’s clear-cut vision will continue to lead egabi in the right track to achieve further growth on all fronts of business management and organizational effectiveness.
Hisham Sanad is the chairman of the Industry Chamber for Communication and Information Technology (CIT) - a member of the Federation of Egyptian Industries (www.cit-fei.org), also a Board member of the Egypt Software Testing Board (ESTB) www.estb.org.eg –an affiliate of the ISTQB (International Software testing & Quality Board), a member of the Egyptian Junior Businessmen Association (EJB) and a member of the Core ICT committee at the American Chamber in Egypt. His acknowledged contribution led him to be an appointed member representing the CIT community to several ITIDA initiatives & programs.
For a period of 3 years starting 2003, Mr. Sanad held the title of Managing Director, Raya Software & Regional Director Raya International Services, (www.rayacorp.com) leading it to achieve CMMI level 3 certifications to become one of the first SW firms in Egypt. His contribution to major achievements did not stop here; furthermore he managed several successful projects in e-Government such as TE Billing. Under his management, Raya Saudi and Raya Gulf branches were established. Operational practice and management procedures formed through successful efforts orchestrated by Mr. Sanad enabled the management and resources pool, both administratively and technically, to meet the satisfaction of stakeholders.
Mr. Sanad was General Manager of Raya Integration; the System Integration arm of Raya Corporation starting 2000 till 2002 and a member of the executive team at Raya Corporation. He successfully led operations to grow 100% over the year 2000. Moreover, he established the Solutions and SW Services Division which grew to contribute 30% of Raya’s turnover in comparison to 4% in the years before.
In 1997, Mr. Sanad, co-founded & managed STS (Solutions and Technology Services), which was later acquired by Raya Holding, STS was a successful and very promising startup that introduced relatively new solutions to the Egyptian market at that time, such as Business Intelligence Solutions.
Mr. Sanad joined NCR in 1989. By the year 1994, he held the title of Sales Manager Banking Sector where he was selected “Sales Target Achiever” award for 8 consecutive years, and one of only two selected for the “Early Identified Leadership Team - Corporate Global Program” from the Egypt Team. He was a member of the regional task force for “Branch Automation” Banking Solutions.
Moreover, Mr. Sanad was an active member and contributor of a national committee (sponsored by Central bank of Egypt) for standardizing checks, remittances and automation of the check clearing process in 1995.
Back in 1988 and after one year as Senior Field Engineer at Xerox Corporation, his team was announced "Team of the Year". He was member of a Specialists Team for heavy duty electronic machines and a member of the Egyptian first task force for implementing the transformation into the “Document Company”.
His unsurpassed achievements are based not only on his managerial talents and leadership skills, but are supported by a clear training and education foundation; Mr. Sanad attended Harvard Business School Strategic Executives Program in 2004. He received extensive Training Programs at NCR Business School, Daytona, Ohio - USA, as well as numerous Banking Industry vocational training courses. Mr. Sanad holds a B.Sc. with High Honors from Ain Shams University, Faculty of Engineering; Communications and Electronics section, class of 1987.
Dr. Sherif Hashem
Board Member, ITIDA
Dr. Sherif Hashem is the Senior Advisor to the Minister of Communications and Information Technology for CyberSecurity, and the Executive Vice President of the Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA), Egypt (2004-present). He is also an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Engineering, Cairo University, Egypt (2001-present).
Dr. Hashem received a B.Sc. in Communication & Electronic Engineering (Distinction with honor) and an M.Sc. in Engineering Mathematics from Cairo University (Egypt – 1985&1988), and a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University (USA – 1993). He also completed the Senior Executive Program at Harvard Business School (USA – 2001).
Dr. Hashem authored and co-authored more than fifty articles and book chapters in the areas of information technology, e-commerce, computational intelligence, and operations research, with applications in engineering, energy, environment, and computer sciences (with over 800 international citations).
Dr. Hashem held research positions at Purdue University (USA, 1992-3), West Virginia University (USA, 1997), Honeywell Sensor and Systems Development Center (USA, 1991-2), and was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow of the US-Department of Energy working at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory - PNNL (USA, 1994-5).
Dr. Hashem is currently responsible for e-Signature, cyber security, and Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) protection for software and databases. Dr. Hashem’s responsibility includes setting the framework for establishing and operating the Egyptian Computer Emergency Response Team (EG-CERT) at the National Telecom Regulatory Authority, the Egyptian Root Digital Certificate Authority (Root-CA) and the Software IPR Office at ITIDA. Dr Hashem was the Chairman of the national committee to draft Egypt’s cyber security, data protection, and privacy law; the Chairman of the MCIT committee on CyberSecurity; the Chairman of the High Level Committee for the Egyptian e-Content Competition (2005, 2006); the Chairman of the steering committee of the ITAC initiative that foster the cooperation between ICT companies and R&D institutions; and a member of the technical committee for enhancing the National ID card. Prior to joining ITIDA in December 2004, Dr. Hashem was the Director of Information Society Development Office (ISDO) and the manager of the E-Business Program at the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT). He headed the national committee that prepared Egypt’s electronic signature law, which is Egypt’s first cyberlaw. Dr. Hashem was also the Director of the Egyptian Focal Point for the EUropean MEDiterranean Information Society (EUMEDIS) Initiative (2000-3).
In 2001, Dr. Hashem initiated and managed the first multi-applications smart card project in Egypt. The 3-years project established a Visa-certified infrastructure for issuing and processing smart cards, over a network of Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) and Points of Sale (POS) covering 56 post offices in Greater Cairo and Alexandria. From 1995 to 1999, Dr. Hashem was as a senior consultant and senior project manager at the Egyptian Cabinet Information and Decision Support Center (IDSC), and at the Regional Information Technology and Software Engineering Center (RITSEC), where he managed several information technology projects in various sectors including electronic commerce, tourism, culture heritage preservation, healthcare, and community empowerment, including the award winning project: Egypt Information Highway, and led the team that established the first government website in Egypt, drawing over 3 million hits per month by mid 1999.
In 1997, Dr. Hashem initiated a project to establish the first community oriented IT centers in Egypt, funded by the UNDP and supported by IDSC and the Governorate of Sharkeya. This model was refined and included in Egypt’s National ICT plan adopted later in 1999.
Dr. Hashem carried out several consultation assignments for international organizations including: United Nations Development Program – UNDP, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia – ESCWA, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa – UNECA, United Nations Population Information Network – POPIN, International Telecommunication Union – ITU, World Health Organization – WHO, , International Development Research Centre – Canadian IDRC, and the Arab League Education, Culture, and Sciences Organization – ALECSO.
Dr. Hashem was an invited lecturer for the Regional Information Technology Institute / Maastricht School of Management (the Netherlands) joint MBA Program (1997-8). He was a Juror in the Global Junior Challenge (2000, 2002, 2004).
Dr. Hashem received several awards and recognition including: the Global Bangemann Challenge Award (from the King of Sweden: Stockholm – 1999), the International G7-GIP Information Society Award (G7/8: Warsaw – 1997), the Excellence in Teaming Award (PNNL – 1994), and the Spirit Award (Honeywell – 1992).
Dr. Hashem is listed in MARQUIS Who`s Who in the World (16th edition – 1999 & Millennium edition – 2000 ) and in Who`s Who in America – Science and Engineering (5th Edition – 2000). Dr. Hashem is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and Egyptian Syndicate for Engineers. Dr. Hashem was a member of the Board of Directors of Egypt’s National Postal Organization (2001-6).
Mr. Ahmed Kabeel
Board Member, ITIDA
Mr. Ahmed Kabeel (34) is the founder and CEO of OMS, a leading IT consulting services firm based in Cairo, Egypt. Ahmed started his career at the age of 18 as a sales person in a small computer company. Upon graduating in 1997, he started an IT services unit in his father’s company. In 2001 he spun-off OMS as a separate company with a capital of $5,000 and a 12 man team. Over the course of the following years and driven purely by organic growth, OMS grew to be a recognized regional IT solutions and consulting company. OMS today boasts over 200 employees serving clients in over 24 countries across the MEA region. OMS is one of Egypt’s top IT-services exporters and enjoys an impressive list of references and awards.
Mr. Ahmed is the full-time CEO of the OMS group of companies (including 2 in Egypt and 1 in UAE). He is also the Vice chairman of the ICT export council in Egypt. He is highly recognized by his partners and technology providers for his entrepreneurial drive, vision and attention to quality.
One of few in the MEA region, Ahmed was recently awarded a unique scholarship at IMD International to attend a prestigious executive program, Orchestrating Winning Performance.
Mr. Ahmed holds a B.Sc. in Accounting from the University of Ain Shams, Egypt.
Eng. Magda El Sabee
Board Member, ITIDA
Magda El Sabee is the Chairperson and the CEO of Summit Holding, an Information and communication technology solutions provider serving over 400 corporations in the Middle East, North Africa and South East Asia. Established in 2004, and operating out of Egypt with offices in Cairo, Dubai and Algeria, Summit is a joint venture between Orascom and Sumitomo Corporation in Japan making it the first Egyptian –Japanese Joint venture in ICT in the region.
Magda has 25 years of experience in the ICT field with focus on areas like strategic planning, general management, organizational development, sales and marketing, formulation and provision of technical services, corporate startups and turnarounds. She led the transformation and the restructure of the group from decentralized independent companies to one of the largest ICT groups in the region.
She also drove a double digit growth for Summit since its inception in 2004 till present time. A growth that was achieved organically as well as through the introduction of new services like IT outsourcing, Mobile Financial services, Mobile broadcasting and Telecommunication Infrastructure Solutions. Magda has joined Orascom Group in 1993 where she established and managed Opensoft, a software and services company offering a wide portfolio of high end software solutions.
In 2001 she moved to manage Orascom Technology Systems, Orascom system integration arm where she focused on streamlining the business and spinning off non profitable business units. She led and represented the Orascom side in negotiating and finalizing the joint venture with Sumitomo Corporation.
From 1989 till 1993, she joined Oracle Middle East as the technical manager for their startup operations for Egypt. Her efforts helped in establishing Oracle position in Egypt and growing Oracle business to become the solution of choice in the oil and gas, government and defense sectors.
Prior to her work in Oracle, she was employed as a management consultant in Price WaterHouse Egypt.
Magda El Sabee is the chairperson of the ICT committee at the American chamber in Egypt since 2008.
In August 2009, she was appointed as a member of the Egyptian-US Business Leaders Forum whose main mission is to advance the bilateral commercial relationship between the United States and Egypt and to promote economic and political relationship at the highest levels of both government and business.
Ms. El Sabee holds a bachelor of Communication Engineering from Cairo University and a Masters of Business Administration from the American University.
Dr. Khaled Serry
Board Member, ITIDA
Dr. Khaled Serry Seyam has 20 years of academic and practical experience in the legal and financial fields, including, Criminal law, International Criminal Law, Commercial Law, Capital Markets, Tax and public Finance, Public Private Partnership, Project Finance, Mergers and Acquisitions.
He was involved in drafting various Egyptian Laws and Regulations such as the Tax law, PPP law, Securitization law, Economic Courts law, Non Banking Financial Markets law, amendments of the Capital Markets law, amendments of the Criminal Procedures code, The Consumer Protection Law, Rules for listed companies on the Stock Exchange, in addition to advising various governments in the region on legal reforms including, Bahrain and Libya.
In his capacity as Vice Chairman of the Egyptian Market Authority, as Vice Chairman of the Financial Supervisory Authority and as Chairman of the Egyptian Stock Exchange, Dr. Seyam contributed basically on the Regulatory Capital Market Reform process in Egypt. He also served as a Member of the Board of Directors of the General Authority of Investment and Free Zones. Dr. Seyam was also appointed to the Board of Directors of Misr Settlement, Depository and Clearing Company( MCDR), and to the Investor Protection Fund.
As a senior legal advisor to the Minister of Foreign Trade and to the Minister of Finance for 8 years, Dr Seyam participated in a great number of economic legal reforms. As a senior Legal Advisor to the PPP unit, Dr. Seyam headed the drafting of the PPP law, as well as the PPP Executive Regulations, the PPP Model Contract, the PPP committees toolkit and supervised the Tender Procedures for the first mega PPP Wastewater Project and Hospital Project.
This practical experience is also supplemented by immense academic research. Dr. Seyam contributed to the creation of the French Section of the Faculty of Law, Ain Shams University, in collaboration with Jean Moulin University, Lyon 3, France.
Dr. Seyam is The Founding Director of the Financial Service Institute, which is targeting to become the pioneer Regional Training and Research Center for the Non Banking Financial Services.
Ahmed Mekky is the co-founder, Board Member, and Chief Executive Officer of Gulf Bridge International (GBI) – the region’s leading submarine cable network operator.
As the CEO, Ahmed is leading the company in building and operating the first ever privately-owned and independently-operated cable network in the Gulf region, with onward connectivity to Europe, Africa and Asia.
Ahmed is a highly experienced telecom executive with strong technical and business qualifications and an impressive track record of over 17 years of hands-on experience in strategic planning, business unit development, project and product management, and system engineering strategies. In addition, he is considered a pioneer in the field of satellite communications having managed numerous projects across the region, including the evaluation process for the launching of a new satellite to serve the Middle East, and the investment in a new satellite hub in the Gulf.
Prior to founding GBI, Ahmed worked on projects encompassing both telecom’s infrastructure and satellite communications. Ahmed has taken a leading role on a broad range of business opportunities including the acquisition of an existing telecom operator, investing in telecom ventures in Europe, investing in GSM licenses in Africa and acquiring a license for a country’s international gateway for voice and data.
Ahmed plays an active role in the global telecom industry. He is the co-chair of the SAMENA Subsea Working Group, and a member of the Board of Governors of the Pacific Telecommunications Council (PTC). In September 2012, Ahmed was included in the Global Telecom Business Power 100 List, which recognizes and celebrates the leaders who are shaping the future of the ICT industry.
Ahmed is on the Board of the Italian-Egyptian Business Council which is a not-for-profit, non-governmental organization formed to facilitate and develop economic relations between Italy and Egypt
Ahmed holds a bachelor of Communications and Electronics Engineering from Cairo University. In addition, he has a pre-master in Computer Engineering from Cairo University and a M.Sc. in IT from the University of Nottingham.