Emirates announces management changes
Emirates has announced several management changes in its commercial operations team, strengthening its market position in Africa, the Middle East and North and South America.
Orhan Abbas has been appointed Senior Vice President Commercial Operations Africa, and will lead growth efforts across the continent and will report directly to Thierry Antinori, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer. Since joining Emirates in 1998 as a management trainee, he has held senior positions in Tanzania, Iran, South Africa and the Middle East as well as the position of Vice President for India and Nepal. In 2012, he was appointed Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations, The Americas, and in August 2013 was later appointed as Senior Vice President Commercial Operations - Latin America, Central and Southern Africa.
Adil Al Ghaith, the new Senior Vice President Commercial Operations Gulf Middle East & Iran will lead a number of Emirates’ markets in the Middle East. Having been with Emirates for 17 years, Adil is a seasoned commercial executive in this region who led markets like Qatar, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Yemen for several years. He also previously held the position of Vice President in Pakistan and Senior Vice President in North and West Africa.
Rob Gurney is taking an additional responsibility for Latin America as he becomes the Senior Vice President of Commercial Operations (The Americas). He joined Emirates in October 2014 as a Divisional Vice President Australasia following an extensive career in aviation, travel and tourism; and was promoted to Senior Vice President Commercial Operations for North America in 2015.
Thierry Antinori, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer of Emirates Airline, said: “The industry is constantly evolving and we remain committed to looking at new ways at developing our services and expanding our commercial footprint across a number of regions, including Africa, the Middle East and the Americas. With an excellent track record in growing our business, I am confident that Orhan, Adil and Rob will excel in their new roles so we stay competitive in a new year of growth.”
5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly
Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.
Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills.
What do you do, in a nutshell?
I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.
How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?
I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.
They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?
The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.