• Transform magazine
  • December 11, 2018



The judges

The panel and the judging process.

The judging panel for the Transform Awards MENA 2019 is composed of branding and communication experts from the Middle East and North Africa region. We purposely look for a panel that has experience and knowledge of branding, marketing, corporate communications and advertising from various industries in order to provide a wider perspective.

The scoring is done on a points system and the judges score anonymously. The judging system we operate is one which is fair, if a judge has entered into a specific category, they will be exempt from reviewing that area in which they are competing to avoid bias. We also provide detailed feedback on submitted work which often proves highly useful.

Winners are determined by the scores they receive and only entries that score high enough marks will be shortlisted and awarded with trophies.

If you are interested and believe you have the necessary background to be a judge for the Transform Awards MENA 2019, please email Jessica Dunmall.


Meet our 2018 panel.

The 2018 awards were judged by branding and communication experts from the Middle East and North Africa region. In addition to this, to celebrate the awards programmes fifth anniversary, we welcomed some past gold-winning agency, to join the panel. We also for the first time, welcomed FITCH and START, to the judging panel as they won the 2017 'Best overall visual identity' and 'Grand Prix' respectively.

Going forward, we will continue to invite the winning agencies of the 'Best overall visual identity' and 'Grand Prix' awards to judge the awards. In 2019 will welcome James Brand Strategy & Design Consultancy and Wolff Olins to the judging panel.

Komal Bajaj
marketing and communications director, MENA

Komal heads up marketing and communication for UM MENA across 14 offices in 13 countries across the Middle East & North Africa. She is responsible for the development and implementation of communication strategies through PR, events, CSR, experiential activations and thought leadership activities to build the UM brand, create consumer awareness and drive customer preference. Komal oversees sponsorships, marketing effectiveness, social media, media and employee communication and collaborations with UM’s clients and partners.

Prior to this, Komal was a publisher for the Middle East editions of Fortune magazine in charge of brand strategy and content management of the magazines and has also worked with Samsung as marketing manager for their mobile handsets division in the GCC.

Ashish Banerjee
managing partner

Ash is one of the most widely-known and well-regarded senior brand strategists in the MENA region and presently runs his own consulting practice advising corporates, consulting firms and communications companies on strategy, brand, marketing, experience and communications.

Formerly he was Chief Brand Officer of Jawwy from STC, VP-Brand Development at du, Senior Partner at Lippincott and SVP-EMEA at McCann Worldgroup in London.

He has spoken or presented at conferences including Vodafone’s and TeliaSonera’s global brand conferences, Global Telecoms CMO Conference, Transform MENA, STEP, Dubai Lynx, and many others. He has also served on the juries of the Transform Awards MENA 2018 & 2015, several other local and regional awards, and won the Grand Prix at the Transform Awards MENA 2016 (Jawwy) and 2014 (du).

He’s a Founding Board Member of The Marketing Society Middle East, has been published in Advertising Age, Campaign ME, International Journal of Advertising and several books, profiled in Communicate (UK), and serves as a Brand Mentor to digital startups at in5.

Anis Bengiuma
Managing and creative Director
28 Harf

A Libyan Creative Director who studied and worked in the UK and Italy, Anis has been working in the Arabian Gulf since 2003. Leading a multicultural team of designers, passionately striving to create appropriate design solutions that harmonise global and Middle Eastern cultural sensitivities in terms of brand experience.

With over twenty years in branding, he has acquired a multicultural, multilingual experience which helped him develop a deeper understanding of visual culture on a global level; this understanding, combined with a first-hand knowledge of the Arabic language and culture, is what drives him to produce work which is effective within international standard, yet preserving regional coherence.

Rob Beswick
Group vice president brand
Virgin Mobile MENA

Rob Beswick is the group Vice President of Brand for Virgin Mobile Middle East and Africa.

Bringing a wealth of experience in commercial brand development, digital transformation, multi-channel digital, retail and marketing strategies, Rob joined the Virgin Mobile team in 2011. Rob is a senior member of the management team and has been instrumental in launching the Virgin Mobile brand in the region, firstly in KSA and more recently with the benchmark digital launch of Virgin Mobile in the UAE.

Prior to joining Virgin Mobile, Rob gained a vast knowledge of all aspects of marketing through various roles in London, before specializing in mobile telecommunications as Lycamobile Group Marketing Director, where he launched the brand in over 11 markets over a six-year period.

He has managed marketing operations in 17 global markets including the UK, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Italy, Australia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Oman, the UAE and Jordan.

In his current role, Rob is responsible for spearheading Virgin Mobile’s brand strategy, customer experience, marketing strategy, and digital transformation as well as leading market growth regionally on both a corporate and consumer level.

Ian Butlin
senior director

Ian has been working for leading agencies and brands for his whole career - both in the UK and the GCC.  More recently, he has been instrumental in the development of ZEENAH from a local advertising agency to an award-winning multi-national integrated brand consultancy, working across a wide range of sectors, from financial services and tourism to logistics and FMCG, and much more.  As a Marketing Director, Ian also worked with such esteemed companies as Hilton, Accor, Nissan and Ford.

Erika Clegg

Co-founder of the strategic communications design business, Spring, Erika is also a DBA board director and digital route panel adviser to the Institute for Apprenticeships.

Her skill is the ability to get to grips with complicated challenges, simplify them and bring people on board to crack them, looking at the long-term impact as well as short-term goals.

Known for developing creative strategies and leading the Spring team that delivers brand building, consultation, engagement and multi-channel communications programmes, Erika works with clients including SMEs, corporates, cultural organisations, manufacturers, places and government.

Yashodeep Ghorpade
marketing communications manager
SONY Middle East 7 Africa

Yashodeep is currently marketing and communications manager at SONY Middle East & Africa. He's a dynamic, high caliber professional with experience in marketing communications, digital marketing, event management, advertising and promotions, branding, corporate communication, budget and cost management with reputable organizations. Proven track record of managing multinational professional teams, collaborating with stakeholders, anchoring creative and management functions and delivering consistent results aligned to company goals and objectives.

Syed Mansoorh Hussain
Marketing Manager
Nestle - Middle East

A marketer at heart but exposed into almost all the key leadership roles within demand generating commercial functions with top-notch FMCG and healthcare companies like Nestle, Pfizer, Mead Johnson and Sanofi-Aventis.  20 years into various marketing leadership roles in the Middle East, Africa, Levant, Iran, Iraq and Pakistan. Hold a master’s degree in business.

Have been involved in multiple brand turnarounds, new product launches, expansion of geographical footprints. Multifunction and cross cultural exposure and hands on experience of working with key stakeholders i.e. consumers, healthcare professionals, media agencies, governments authorities, distribution and retail channels.

Jimmy Kmeid
design director

As Design Director at FITCH Dubai, Jimmy Kmeid leads a team of creatives on a day-to-day basis delivering brand solutions across the MENA region.

Having been in the creative industry for more than fifteen years, Jimmy has gained extensive background knowledge and understanding of design and the important role it plays when applied to brands and businesses.

He takes a special interest in cross-cultural design, developing creative solutions that blend global and local cultures into unique brand experiences. In his twelve years at FITCH, Jimmy has worked across different studios in the FITCH network including London and Delhi. He has been involved in developing and designing brands strategically and creatively for clients like Vodafone, Nestlé, Intercontinental Hotels Group, Indigo Hotel, Jumeirah, Chalhoub Group, Qatar Foundation, Qatar Football Association and Aljazera Markets.

Projects he has worked on have received recognition at awards across the region and globally, including Cannes Lions, Design Week Awards, Dubai Lynx, and Transform Awards MENA for best overall visual identity.

Walid Kotaich
marketing manager
Abu Dhabi Media

Walid is a brand and marketing professional with over 15 years of experience working across GCC and lower Gulf fragmented markets. He currently holds the position of marketing manager at Abu Dhabi Media Company and is responsible for developing strategies, overseeing and launching brand, and advertising campaigns for ADM’s corporate, sports disciplines and digital. In his previous roles, he managed the regional marketing for HTC and the media planning and buying for Etisalat. Walid holds an MBA in Marketing and Communication and his B2B and B2C sector experience includes FMCG, Industrial, Telecommunication, IT, Banking, Government and Health.

Stefanie Luppa
creative director

Stefanie is creative director at Grow, leading through brand strategy, design development and implementation.

She started her career in Germany as an art director in the advertising industry. After 5 years she studied communication design at the University of Applied Sciences in Düsseldorf, where she focused on branding and graduated with first class honours.

In 2010 Stefanie left Germany and worked for design studios and international agencies in London, Abu Dhabi and Dubai before she joined Grow in 2014. During that time she won international prices at i.a. REDDOT Design Awards, Transform MENA Awards, Golden Awards of Montreux and Annual Multimedia Awards.

Yasmin Medhat
regional retail marketing manager
Samsung Electronics MENA

Yasmin is leading retail innovation solutions and brand activations for all Samsung product divisions across all of Middle East North Africa, Turkey , Iran and Pakistan

Prior to her current role, Yasmin oversaw all retail marketing activities and company local events for Jotun Paints Middle East

Yasmin is a certified color consultant since 2011 aside for being among the regional team for selecting Jotun colors trends 2011 and 2012

Yasmin holds a bachelor ‘s degree in Architectural Engineering from Greenwich University

Randa Modad
Founder & Brand Strategy Consultant

Since 1996, Randa has been working in marketing and branding across different sectors, ranging from FMCG products and telecoms to Life and Science. Some of her most successful stories were her valuable contributions and involvement in the creation of the Omran brand in Oman, Du telecoms in the UAE, TATA Docomo in India, and Fakih IVF Fertility Center in the UAE. Founder and Brand Strategy Consultant at BrandAid, she focuses on helping businesses outperform their competitors. Randa has received a number of awards and commendations from prestigious organizations and is known for her unique innovative ideas that help businesses succeed.

Suhail Nazir
managing partner

Alex Oberberg
VP Global Marketing

Ian Paget
Logo Geek

Ian is lead creative designer for advansys, working on the design for projects which include eccomerce solutions, websites and logo designs for companies such as GSK, Yakult and Kuehne + Nagel. With a passion for branding and identity design, in his personal time he runs Logo Geek, working on identity designs for small to medium sized businesses. Through Logo Geek, Ian has a thriving social media following, reporting and tracking leading brand design trends and news to the creative community.

Hannah Powlesland
general manager - Middle East

Hannah is responsible for Start’s operations in the Middle East. She leads key projects herself and works closely with clients to deliver award-winning brand, digital and retail solutions. She has worked with many of the region’s leading brands on large scale transformation projects including Yas Island, Bank Dhofar, Dubai Airports, Jumeirah, Hamad International Airport, ADCB, Virgin Mobile, Mubadala, Emaar and Etisalat.

 Prior to Dubai, Hannah was based in East Africa and the UK working with hotels, real estate developers and businesses to help shape and deliver employee engagement programmes, brand strategy and re-brand projects.

Maria Salazar
Production Advisor

Maria has worked in many areas of marketing and communications for different industries across the GGC. She has spent much of her career working for companies that include Farah Leisure, the Regency Group in Qatar and has also managed the marketing for Ferrari World Abu Dhabi. Maria currently works within the Shell Upstream International team. Maria also holds a professional diploma as a graphic designer in addition to years of experience in marketing and communications events.

Mary Sayej
marketing manager
Joelle Group

Daniel Taylor
senior director brand development

Dan is currently the senior director -  brand at du in Dubai. He is primarily responsible for delivering the day-to-day brand development needs of the business, from both a design and strategic perspective. Over the last 18 years he has worked on many renowned global brands from both an agency and client perspective. Dan has spent a significant part of his life working in international environments and regional roles, having lived in Singapore, Los Angeles, London, with home currently being the UAE.

Michael Wright
head of creative

As Head of Creative at North55, Michael Wright is the driving force behind the agency’s creative output, leading a talented team of print and online designers.

With eight years’ UK experience, followed by a stint in Bahrain, Michael moved to Dubai to join North55 in 2011. In the intervening years, he has overseen the creation of some of the region’s most effective and memorable identity systems, for local and international brands including FIFA, One&Only, Bvlgari, Islamic Museum of Australia, Siemens and The European Tour.

Michael is a passionate believer in the potential of coherent, intelligent branding to communicate across geographic, cultural and demographic boundaries, and is particularly interested in exploring and developing integrated branding systems with this aim in mind.


Align your brand with this global celebration, honouring brand development and rebranding. We have a number of sponsorship options available to you. Call us to find out more. 

Andrew Thomas, publishing editor of Transform Magazine and Awards

email: athomas@transformmagazine.net

call: +44 (0)20 3950 5356

Supporting Partners

If you are interested in being a supporting partner for the Transform Awards MENA please email Michelle Kibble or call +44 (0)20 3950 5356