Six key individuals shaping sharia-compliant lending in the region: Ijlal Ahmed Alvi, Saleh Malaikah, Moinuddin Malim, Geert Bossuyt, Hussain al-Qemzi and Afaq Khan
Ijlal Ahmed Alvi
Position: Chairman and CEO, International Islamic Financial Market (IIFM)
Biography: Ijlal Ahmed Alvi was appointed chairman and CEO of the Bahrain-based IIFM in April 2005, after two decades of working in the banking and finance sector. IIFM was founded by several lenders, including Saudi Arabia’s Islamic Development Bank, Bank Indonesia and the central banks of Bahrain and Sudan. It was established as a neutral and non-profit organisation with primary focus on the standardisation of Islamic financial products and documentation across the globe. Under Alvi’s stewardship, the IIFM has signed a number of cooperation agreements with trade organisations, including the Jeddah-based Islamic Research & Training Institute (part of the Islamic Development Bank Group) and the Association of Islamic Banks in Malaysia. Alvi has a master’s degree in finance from Golden Gate University in San Francisco in the US.
Contact Tel: (+973) 1 750 0161
Position: Vice-chairman and CEO, Salama Group
Biography: Saleh Jameel Malaikah is vice-chairman and CEO of the Dubai-based Salama Group and chairman of three of the its takaful (Islamic insurance) subsidiaries: Bahrain’s Takaful and Retakaful International Investment Company, Saudi Arabia’s IAIC Cooperative Insurance Company and the Egyptian Saudi Insurance House. He is also deputy chairman of Asian Finance Bank Berhad, an Islamic lender based in Malaysia. Malaikah’s career has stretched across a number of fields from Islamic banking and takaful insurance to academia, when he worked as an assistant professor at Saudi Arabia’s King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM). Malaikah has a doctorate in investment and finance from the US’ Michigan State University and a master’s degree in business administration from KFUPM. He graduated with a degree in civil engineering.
Contact Tel: (+971) 4 357 7000
Position: CEO, Mashreq al-Islami
Biography: Moinuddin Malim has been CEO of the UAE’s Mashreq al-Islami bank since 2010. He is also the head of its Islamic banking division, responsible for sharia-compliant banking and finance initiatives at the Mashreq group level for wholesale and retail banking. From 2007 to October 2009, Malim was head of corporate and investment banking at Badr al-Islami, which later rebranded as Mashreq al-Islami. He was responsible for setting up and running its Islamic wholesale banking units. Between 2003 and 2006, he was managing director and head of asset management and capital markets at Dubai Islamic Bank, where he arranged sukuk (Islamic bonds) worth more than $9bn. Prior to this, Malim spent four years as a senior partner at The International Investor, a Kuwaiti investment firm. Malim has a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Toledo in the US.
Contact Tel: (+971) 4 424 4411
Position: CEO, Dar al-Istithmar
Biography: Geer Bossuyt is CEO of Dar al-Istithmar, an Islamic finance house with offices in Dubai, London and Oxford in the UK. The firm is regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority. Bossuyt previously worked for Germany’s Deutsche Bank AG in Dubai from 2006 to 2009 as senior managing director, global head of Islamic business and regional head of structuring for conventional and Islamic products in the Middle East and North Africa. He joined Deutsche Bank in London in 2001, taking on responsibility for internal sales for structured and investment products. Before joining Deutsche Bank, Bossuyt worked at KBC Securities, the investment banking arm of Belgium’s KBC Bank, from January 1999. He began his career at Belgian bank Cera in 1993 in its treasury department. Bossuyt has a master’s degree in accounting and finance from the School of Public and Business Administration in Brussels.
Contact Tel: (+971) 4 358 6836
Position: Chief executive officer (CEO), Noor Investment Group
Biography: Hussain Ahmad al-Qemzi has more than 25 years’ experience working for some of the UAE’s leading financial institutions. He is currently CEO of the Noor Investment Group, which focuses on commercial banking and real estate. He also serves as the CEO of Noor Islamic Bank, the group’s flagship company, which was established in 2006 along with Emirates Investment Authority. At the same time, Al-Qemzi is chairman of the Awqaf and Minors Affairs Foundation and has been vice-chairman of Dubai-based property developer Emaar properties since 2006. He was also CEO of Sharjah Islamic Bank until the same year. Al-Qemzi was chief operating officer at the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) until 2003 and a board member of the Dubai Financial Market and Dubai Financial Exchange until 2005. He has a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
Contact Tel: (+971) 4 367 3333
Position: CEO, Standard Chartered Saadiq
Biography: Afaq Khan is the CEO of Standard Chartered Saadiq, the Dubai-based international Islamic banking division of the UK’s Standard Chartered Bank. He joined Standard Chartered in 2003 with the task of launching its Islamic division. Since then, he has been responsible for building the international Islamic banking business to cover retail, corporate and investment lending. Khan is a board member of Standard Chartered Saadiq, Malaysia’s Berhad and the Bahrain-based IIFM. Prior to joining Standard Chartered, he was the global head of asset finance and advisory at HSBC Amanah and the US’ Citibank. Khan is also a member of the Islamic Finance Advisory Council of the Dubai International Financial Centre and the UK government’s Islamic Finance Expert Group. He has a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Western Illinois in the US.
Contact Tel: (+971) 4 508 2564