Team Tihama

After a particularly challenging period in our history, the year 2016 signified a major turning point for the group. Our Board of Directors was restructured with the appointment of a team of bright young Saudi thinkers. This fresh injection of talent, in turn resulted in the appointment of a brand-new executive management team.
A carefully planned and thought-out transformation strategy was implemented that saw a return to profitability in less than two years. Central to this was the signing of landmark global partnerships with WPP, the world’s largest communications group, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, the world’s largest K-12 education publishing company and WH Smith, one of the UK’s flagship retail brands.

Sari Almaayouf
Chairman

Sari is the CEO and MD of The National Agricultural Marketing Company (Thimar). Thimar is a listed business which distributes food to supermarkets, the Royal Court and HORECAS as well as   having its own chain of supermarkets. Sari joined Thimar 5 years ago and has turned the business around creating profitable growth since takeover.
Sari has fourteen years of experience in senior roles both in the kingdom and internationally, including seven years in the financial services sector having worked at ING and MEFIC Capital.
Education: Bachelor’s Degree, Electrical Engineering, California State University.

BOARD MEMBERS

Abdulkarim Almaayouf
Board Member & Managing Director

Abdulkarim brings twelve years of senior management experience in KSA and internationally with experience in developing new business as a founder or partner in the ICT and Environmental sectors.
He holds board positions with Bank ALJazira, AlThost Project management Saudi Arabia, Thimar, APPLUS Arabia (the local JV of one of the world’s largest inspection and testing companies). He is CEO of Mergab Holding successfully creating an international consortium delivered a major part of the Riyadh Metro project
Abdulkarim is also a Director of Sahara Global Holding a group operating fifteen companies across six segments, including the British Standards Institute Saudi Arabia.
Education: BSc (Hons) in Electrical Engineering, MSc in Engineering Management, University of Southern California.

Bader Al Madi
Board Member

Badr has 13 years’ experience in IT with companies such as Oracle, and Cisco. Currently he is the Director-Telecom and Cloud Service provider at Dell Technologies. Bader also held a consultancy position for the Minister of Telecommunication and information technology in Saudi Arabia spearheading strategic global partnerships.
Badr was also part of the successful biding consortium for the Riyadh Smart City Strategy (including Smart Education)
Experienced in working on national projects in the education and financial services sectors.
Education: BSc Computer Science, King Fahad University of Petroleum and Minerals

Ibrahim Al Shabib
Deputy Chairman

A partner Ibrahim is the Managing director of Sahari Holding group which is formed from 13 different companies in the environmental industry and retail sectors. Ibrahim is the Chairman of APPLUS Arabia a Saudi/ Spanish joint venture, Chairman of Medical Tubes company, CEO of Masader Corporation a Board member of MSCMS a Saudi/ Malaysian joint venture and several other companies.
Education: Master’s degree in Communication, King Saud University.

Khalid Al Abdu Jabbar
Board Member

Khalid is a private banker in the National Commercial Bank and co-founder of several fast food restaurant chains; Taxi & Spice and a partner in Forsan Food Services company.
Education: Public Relations, King Saud University

Redha Al Haidar
Board Member

Redha is a multi-sectorial professional who thrives to innovate and accomplish leapfrog results. He has over 16 years of experience in working for different government agencies and private sector entities.
Currently, he advises a number of organizations in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and UAE on strategic communication issues, and civic engagement.
In addition, he is a board member of non-profit foundations. Redha sits on the board of MISK foundation (headed by the Deputy Crown Prince and Minister of Defense), Riyadh School (one of the Kingdom’s leading schools) and other entities.
Education:  Master’s degree in Communication, Culture, and Technology, in addition to an Honorary certificate in International Business Diplomacy, Georgetown University.
Master’s degree in Public Administration and Public Policy, the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

Dr. Obaid Al Abdeli
Board Member

Dr Obaid has over 25 years of business experience in the private and public sectors. He is a board member of numerous well-established private companies. He also founded his own consulting firm.
He has authored several highly regarded books on marketing and is an expert on markets and consumer dynamics in Saudi Arabia. In addition to his wide-ranging business experience, he has had a rich academic career having worked in five different universities, private as well as public, as a professor and as a Rector of one of them.
In the course of his academic career, he also initiated numerous successful international projects directed at Saudi Youth.
Dr Obaid is also a board member of several not-for-profit and charitable organizations.
Education: PhD – Manchester Business School

SENIOR TEAM

Grahame Murray
Senior Executive Vice President

Grahame has held senior finance and operational positions internationally within a number of blue-chip groups including Diageo, Pearson and Time Warner, as well as having worked for private equity owned businesses in the Middle East.
He is a founder of a new free school in London, the Fulham Boys School.
Education: BA Economics, University of Leeds. Chartered Accountant (ICAEW).

Mazen Al Asmari
GSO – Business Services and Roadside Advertising.

Mazen began his working career in Public Relations at the Royal Clinic before joining Standard Chartered Bank as Head of HR and PR. More recently he has headed up HR and Government Relations in international engineering consultancy groups.

Al Waleed Al Haidar
General Counsel and Board Secretary

Al Waleed has worked in Saudi Hollandi Bank as a legal consultant for the past six years. Waleed was a major player in developing a number of strategic partnerships with Tihama.
Education: Bachelor’s degree in Law, King Saud University.

Ramy Al Khalil
GSO – Media Services

Rami has over 20 years of experience in the communication sector across the Middle East. He has held senior roles in a number of the world’s leading companies.
Before joining Tihama, Rami was based in Riyadh as a Director of the largest communication consortiums managing a portfolio of clients across both the private and government sectors.

Ayman Soliman
Group Finance Director

Ayman has 19 years’ work experience starting his career in 2000 in Deloitte (Egypt and Kuwait) as an external auditor and worked he there till 2005. In 2005 he joined Investment Dar Company (Kuwait) as Assistant Internal Audit Manager becoming Senior Financial Controller in 2008.
In 2013 he joined Tihama as Group Financial Director and is based in Riyadh.
Education: Bachelor’s Degree from faculty of Commerce and Business Administration from Cairo University in Egypt and Certified Internal Auditor (CIA).

Gerry Johnson
Bookstores Development Consultant

Gerry is a retailer who has over 40 years retail experience, 15 years at board level and 10 years as a listed Company Director.  He has worked in senior roles for Tesco, Asda and Wickes.  He spent 6 Years as a Director of Big Food Group Plc and MD of Booker and 5 years as a Director of HMV Plc and MD of Waterstone’s.  Since 2010 he has worked independently as an advisor with Tata Retail in India, with startups in the UK and since mid-2016 with Tihama.

Stuart Wilson
Head of Bookstores Operations

Stuart is an accomplished retailer with over 30 years in the sector. He has worked in the UK, Scandinavia, India, Russia, Singapore and Malaysia. Most recently he was the International Operations Manager for Hamleys the world’s leading specialist toy retailer.

Karim Cheniour
Head of Internal Audit

Karim has gathered more than 17 years of experience in auditing and advisory services. He served in several audit and consulting firms in North Africa and GCC area including Deloitte and Mazars.
He was the head of Mazars in Tripoli (Libya) and Abu Dhabi (UAE) between 2011 and 2016.
Education: MSc in Accounting.

Hassan Badr
Head of Education

Hassan began his career as a teacher before becoming an educational consultant to a number of international publishers. After a spell as the Sales Director for an Egyptian based publisher and distributor he joined Pearson, latterly heading up their ELT business in Saudi Arabia.
Education: BA English Language, AL Shams University, Cairo; MA Teaching, Oxford Brookes University.