- About Us
This is the first Startup Grind conference in Asia, bringing together over 1,500 founders and thought leaders, for conversations, collaborations and actions around the role of technology for the future of Pakistan. We are inviting globally successful Pakistani entrepreneurs, innovators and technologists to tell their story and how Pakistan as a country can emulate their achievement.
Startup Grind is the world’s largest independent startup community, actively educating, inspiring, and connecting entrepreneurs in 600 cities, across 125 countries. Startup Grind is powered by Google for Startups.
Pakistan is the 6th largest country in the world with a population of 220 million, around 50% of the population speaks English making it the world's 3rd largest english speaking country. With over 70 million people having access to high speed internet, Pakistan has more internet users than the population of all Nordic countries combined.
According to Bloomberg, Pakistan is the world's fastest growing retail market in fact Uber's CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said "Pakistan is one of Uber's fastest growing markets" after Uber's $3.1 billion acquisition of Careem, a ride hailing unicorn founded by a Pakistani entrepreneur.
Careem is not the only one, Pakistan has produced the minds behind some of the world's leading tech companies including Afiniti ($1.6 billion AI startup), KeepTruckin ($1.25 billion startup), FireEye (world's leading cybersecurity company), Cavium (sold for $6 billion) and many others.
Shoaib Makani is the Founder & CEO of KeepTruckin, a mobile and web based fleet management provider valued at $1.4 billion. Shoaib has extensive experience in entrepreneurship and venture capital. Prior to founding KeepTruckin, Shoaib worked at Khosla Ventures, where he led investments in consumer and enterprise technology companies including Instacart, Everlane, Yammer, and HackerRank. Prior to joining Khosla Ventures, Shoaib led business development for Google’s mobile advertising business in Asia and Latin America. He holds a BSc in Economics from The London School of Economics.
Sabah Baxamoosa is Director of Business Development at GSVlabs, where she leads all of the company’s business development efforts and strategic partnerships. Sabah built and launched GSVlabs’ Passport for Organizations offering which has continued to gain traction since its launch in early 2019. With over a decade of experience identifying new opportunities and building strategic partnerships that lead to growth, innovation and revenue, Sabah is a seasoned partnerships and business development executive with a reputation for transforming ideas into strategic actions that drive results.
Prior to GSVlabs, Sabah was a Principal on the University Partnerships team at Coursera, the world’s largest edtech company where she managed a portfolio of elite, high performing strategic university partners – the world’s leading academic institutions – across all stages of the partnership lifecycle, building new content and online product offerings from courses to online degrees, increasing their revenues and impact by 20x.
Prior to moving to the US, Sabah spent several years on marketing, business development and strategic partnerships for Blue Ex, a leading logistics company in Pakistan, and the Association for the Development of Pakistan (ADP), a nonprofit aimed at crowdsourcing funds to invest in development projects in Pakistan. Sabah was also on the founding and senior leadership at Teach For Pakistan, leading and executing its marketing and communications function.
Aatif Awan is the Founding Managing Partner of Indus Valley Capital, an early-stage VC fund focused on Pakistani startups that are transforming entire industries in the country. Aatif has led seed rounds for Airlift and Atoms and sits on their Boards. Previously, he was VP of Growth & International products at LinkedIn and grew the network by half a billion members. Aatif also led the product integrations between LinkedIn and Microsoft after the $26B acquisition.
Safwan is a payments, transaction and Internet technology professional with a proven track record of successful entrepreneurship and leadership.
Safwan Shah is the Founder & CEO of PayActiv, an employer-sponsored financial wellness platform and leader in Timely Earned Wage Access (EWA). PayActiv serves millions of employees world-wide, settles over $1B in timely EWA funds annually, increases employee retention by an average of 30%, and accelerates engagement: eNPS 84.7.
He previously founded Infonox (pioneer in payment aggregation and automated merchant acquiring, sold to TSYS in 2008). Annualized, Infonox systems served over 100M consumers, facilitated over $20 Billion in transactions, managed over 200,000 merchant accounts through acquirers.
He's an educator and lecturer associated with the Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley and Baskin School of Engineering at UC Santa Cruz.
He holds a PhD in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder, AI and Neural Networks researcher at a NASA center. Graduate of the Stanford Executive Program.
- Entrepreneur and innovator with success in creating significant shareholder and customer value.
- Deep understanding of financial service products, transaction processing, unbanked market segments, self service delivery and monitoring.
- Business development visionary who has closed many multi-year, multi-million dollar deals with fortune 500 companies.
- Safwan's work has been featured in the New York Times, WSJ, the Los Angeles Times, on NPR's All Things Considered, NPR’s Life Kit and more.
Saad Bashir was nominated in Jan-2019 as the of Seattle’s Chief Technology Officer. In this role, Saad’s team overseas a team of 800+ staff with P&L responsibility of $350 Million. Saad leads all aspects of technology management for the $6 Billion corporation. Prior to Seattle, Saad was based in Canada’s capital, where he served as Director of Economic Development and Innovation and later as Chief Information Officer for the City of Ottawa.
Saad brings several years of experience in the private and public sectors. He has held positions with organizations including Citibank, Flextronics, Canadian Pacific, Nortel Networks and Calgary Economic Development. He is passionate about strategic planning, innovation development, culture transformation and change management.
Saad has a degree in Computer Engineering from Queen’s University. He has held various volunteer board positions including Innovation Centre at Bayview Yards, Ottawa Tourism, Oxfam Canada and others. He is also a 2013 recipient of “Forty Under 40” award.
Thomas G. Tsao co-founded Gobi Partners in 2002. With over US$1.1 billion in AUM, Gobi has raised 11 funds to date, invested in over 200 startups, and grown to nine offices across China, Japan, Hong Kong and ASEAN. Gobi’s regional platform supports entrepreneurs from the early to growth stages in the innovation and technology sectors. In China, Tom and his partners were first-round investors into Airwallex, Brite Semiconductor (strategic investment from SMIC), Camera360, Dianwoda (acquired by Cainiao), Kr Space, Madhouse (acquired by BlueFocus), Opzoon (acquired by Harbin Gong Da), Teambition (acquired by Alibaba), Tuniu (NASDAQ:TOUR), UR (acquired by HLA) and Yoyi Digital. He was named to the Forbes List of “China’s Top VCs” from 2013-2015 and 2017.
For two years, Tom served as the CEO of DMG (acquired by VisionChina), the largest operator of passenger information systems and digital media networks inside China’s subways. At DMG, Tom was the executive producer for the company’s award-winning A Sunny Day, Dancing Without You, and A Starry Night programs, the world’s first series of subway soap operas sponsored respectively by Starbucks, Nine West and the MDA of Singapore.
Tom leads the team that manages the Alibaba Hong Kong Entrepreneurs Fund, which has invested into companies like DayDayCook, GoGoVan and WeLab. Tom also helped build out Gobi’s investment team in Southeast Asia, which has invested in over 50 companies including Carsome, CiB (acquired by AsiaSoft), DeClout (SGX:5UZ), Hermo (acquired by iStyle), and Mainspring (strategic investment from ByteDance). Tom is now building Gobi’s TaqwaTech investment practice focused on innovative startups serving Muslim communities.
Tom graduated from Harvard with a B.A. in Economics and was the inspiration for Seinfeld’s Movie Phone episode. In 2006, he founded SEO China, a non-profit organization, which has provided more than 180 internships for underserved college students. He also serves as Chairman of the Presidential Scholars Foundation, which cultivates, connects and celebrates U.S. Presidential Scholars (161 of the nation’s top high school seniors who are selected annually and honored by the White House).
Prior to this Waheed had been the:
- CTO of the Mobile Platform Group at Citrix
- Founder, Chairman and CTO of Zenprise, an enterprise mobile device management and security company
- Founder Zambeel, a company that pioneered scalable cloud storage.
Waheed started his career at Excelon Corporation focusing his energies on object-oriented database management system. A computer scientist by training, his research has been published in several peer reviewed academic journals including ACM SIGMOD and VLDB. He is the principal inventor of thirty nine (39) granted US patents and his professional memberships include IEEE, ACM, Tau Beta Pai and Eta Kappa Nu.
Dr. Qureshi holds a Ph.D in computer sciences from the University of Southern California and recently attended the d.school at Stanford University where he focused on user experience and design in the age of AI. He is a charter member of both TiE and OPEN.
He's the CEO of National IT Board Pakistan, Chairman of Ignite - National Technology Fund, Director of Universal Service Fund (USF), National Telecom Corporation (NTC) and Pakistan Telecom Corporation Ltd (PTCL). Silicon Valley entrepreneur, Ex Oracle, holds an MBA from MIT, Public Leadership program from Harvard Business School and Electrical & Communications Engineering from UET Lahore.
NADRA Pakistan (2002 - 2006)
- Chief Architect of the “Computerized National ID Card (CNIC)” process at NADRA that allocates 13-Digit CNIC number Citizens of Pakistan today.
- Project Head of NICOP and POC for overseas Pakistani citizens.
- Chief Architect of Paperless Workflow & Communication process at NADRA.
- Chief Architect of “Data Demographics” for critical policies & planning across government depts.
ORACLE Silicon Valley, California (2006 - 2014)
- Created Oracle Communications line-of-business across ASEAN (South-East Asian) countries.
- Founded NFV/SDN product line global business of Oracle in Silicon Valley.
- Created technology alliances with top Fortune 500 companies of Silicon Valley.
- One of the few leaders from ASIA invited to join Oracle Silicon Valley Telecom Team in California.
- Created Oracle Telecom Appliances business. $18M annual business in the first year
Silicon Valley Entrepreneur (2014 - 2019)
- Founder & CEO: Cronus Digital - A solutions company that brings innovation and creativity at the intersection of Telecommunications and Information Technology.
- Co-Founder: Helioswire Inc. - First Microsatellites powered blockchain and AI/ML solutions company of the World, focused on connecting machines and devices spread across global geographies.
- Founding Member: Spire Global Inc. – Big Data company focused on connecting maritime vessels across the World. Launched 70+ Microsatellites.
- As an Entrepreneur generated $100M+ business globally.
- Holds Executive relationships with the biggest commercial enterprises of the world spread across: ASEAN, EU, North America and Latin America.
- Leveraging executive relationships, propelled technology companies to become next generation Technology Power Houses.
Operations & General Management
- Track record of creating, training and managing large teams.
- Key Asset: Being an Engineer and an MBA, has equal command across Technology, Business & Management.
- Well known for operations management and known to transform distressed organizations into profitable and revenue generating organizations. Widely known in the Industry for his creativity, initiatives & leadership.
- One of the most distinguished alums of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard Kennedy School of Public Leadership.
- MBA from MIT - Sloan School of Management.
- Public Leadership & Corporate Strategy – Harvard Business School & Harvard Kennedy School.
- Electrical and Communications Engineer from UET Lahore.
Mashhood Alam is the Senior Director of Product Management at SAP Ariba.
Helping enterprises move from “atoms to bits”. Partner with C-Suite, LOB heads and innovators in enterprises to drive Digital Transformation by focusing on customer experience and foster innovation culture with Design Thinking. Lead co-innovation projects to realize new business models, business processes and user experiences using emerging exponential technologies - AI, Machine Learning, Big Data on Cloud.
Omar Chaudhary, a French-Pakistani, CEO of PlayerMatch.com, a unique sport networking platform, started his career in automotive and heavy industries.
After meeting Tahir Siddique, Omar Chaudhary decided to follow his passion and to give to his career, a digital impulsion/footprint by managing several projects.
In fact, his creative spirit and motivation push him to open doors and present strategy plan to Apple during his uni. years.
He reported that “My brain goes a million miles an hour resulting on many news ideas every day. I like to think out of the box, to reshape models and markets, to bring disruptive innovation/thinking. In order to do so I took one of the best decisions I've ever made, the one that my gut said yes to start working with amazing people”.
Naheed Afzal LLB qualified as a solicitor in the 90's and practiced Human & Civil rights. Social inclusion, equality and fairness are the driving force behind her and her business which differentiates itself through its conscious leadership and its purpose.
Contracts IT Recruitment Consulting has been powering innovation in the private, public and the third sector through tech diversity and tech inclusion. It has been connecting exceptional technologists with some of the most innovative organisations in the world, fuelling social change for over nineteen years.
Since 1999 she has been a co-founder & Director of a Women Business Enterprise, where she has contributed to the success of the organisation. The company is a globally recognised supplier of tech talent and cultivates a strong diversity ethic. It is an executive member of the UK's largest supplier diversity organisation MSDUK, driving inclusive procurement with global links in the US, South Africa, China and Canada.
Naheed has experience of working in many types of business, she deals with the commercial aspects and development of marketing strategies across Contracts IT's multiple business lines, technology road maps, bid management, organisational design and transformation.
Contracts IT has established a reputation of building global ready diverse Tech talent and is particularly noted for its focus on WOMEN in technology, board level and C-level positions, helping to promote all strands of diversity: BAME, LGBTQ, DISABILITY within IT workforce solutions. It works with a range of clients and with international governments, many of whom share her belief in recognising, respecting and valuing people's differences.
The creation of inclusive workplaces & of different supply chains will play a critical role in the twenty-first century, aiding economic growth, alleviating poverty in the most deprived areas of society, eliminating the gender pay gap and is critical to the success of any company today.
Bilal Ahmed is the CTO and VP of Engineering for SonaSoft, an AI-first company which turns information into intelligence. Sonasoft’s products and services are known for preserving enterprise information through archiving, backup & recovery, migrations, business continuity, and replications. It then makes this information discoverable for eDiscoveries as well as compliant to regulatory statutes and mandates.
Most importantly, Sonasoft transforms enterprise information into new solutions and insights through its Artificial Intelligence (AI) platforms and services. Sonasoft is a public company and is listed on the OTCQB Market with the ticker OTCQB:SSFT. Founded in 2003, the Company is headquartered in San Jose, California.
He is an alumni of NED University and previously worked with leading tech companies in Silicon Valley and Canada including iBM Canada and University Planet.
Adeel Raza is a serial tech entrepreneur. His first successful exit was in 2010 when his startup in the CRM space, ContactMe, was acquired by Webs Inc (a subsidiary of Vistaprint N.V.). Since then, he has founded multiple startups and is currently the cofounder and CEO of MailMunch Inc, Unlayer and CTO of Minder. He has scaled MailMunch to be a leader in the lead generation space with over 12 billion annual views of the lead-gen tools. Minder is currently the go-to marriage app for a million Muslims worldwide, and responsible for nearly 8000 marriages in the west. Adeel has frequently appeared in leading tech press and his startups have been featured by TechCrunch and others.
Jamaludin Bujang is the Managing Director for Gobi Partners. He was appointed as the CEO and Board Member of Malaysia Venture Capital Management Bhd. (MAVCAP) in 2011. Prior to joining MAVCAP, Jamaludin was the Director Investment Division Malaysian Technology Development Corporation (MTDC) where he initiated and executed the implementation of investment database system.
Jamaludin graduated with a Bachelor degree in Business Administration (Economics) from Wichita State University, US and a Masters degree in Business Law (Executive) from International Islamic University, Malaysia.
Mostafa Kandil is founder & CEO of Egypt based transport app Swvl, a premium mass transit system that provide buses to every neighbourhood in Cairo. It allows people to share a ride in a van or bus during morning and evening commutes for a fixed fare.
Launched Careem Turkey, led Egypt expansion project (Mansoura, Tanta, Damanhour and Hurghada) with only 4 days planning and led Pakistan expansion project (Faisalabad, Hyderabad and Peshawar) and got awarded the High Achiever award. Led all cities launched as acting GM until all reached 300+ bookings per day.
Restructured Otlob's operations, increasing efficiency by more than 370% over, causing a potential cost reduction of 35%-40% of overall business expenses. Identified reasons of orders cancellation and managed to decrease lost orders from 6% to 1.9% in 3 months resulting in an annual GMV increase by EGP 5 mn.
Co-managed a Rocket Internet backed e-commerce start-up
in the Philippines, Carmudi, as part of a management team of only 3. In 2 months we grew the company from 25 to 40 employees, expanded operations to 2 other cities in the Philippines, increased sales by 25%, content collection by 60% and launched an Android app.
Faisal Aftab is the Managing Partner of Lakson Investments Venture Capital (LIVC). With close to two decades of experience as an investor, entrepreneur and executive in industries such as media technology, venture capital, management consulting and financial services, Faisal Aftab is a veteran in his field. He has been employed by, or acted as an advisor to several public and private sector corporations as well as the Government of Pakistan. Since 2018, he has held the role of Managing Partner of Lakson Investments Venture Capital (LIVC). LIVC is backed by a top corporate conglomerate in Pakistan and is focused on local opportunities that use technology to create new business models or disrupt those already in existence.
Prior to leading LIVC, Faisal held the role of Executive Vice President at Intel Capital backed CloudStream Media Inc., a Silicon Valley-based technology company that provides streaming services catering to developed markets. Before his position at CloudStream, Faisal served as an Executive Director for MTV Networks International at their Pakistan franchise. He was also a Vice President of the New York-based financial services and wealth management firm, National Financial Partners and a Management Consultant at Deloitte, where he advised a portfolio of asset management, broker dealer and investment banking clients.
His notable technology sector investments include: Bookme.pk (E-Ticketing), Knowledge Platform (Ed Tech), Mediamorph (Media Tech), Medicast (Healthcare Tech), Rigalii (FinTech), SendHUB (Communications Services), Apptimize (Enabling Technologies), MediaSpike (Gaming & Ad Tech), Isloo Fresh (Agribusiness), Ethereum (Distributed Computing Platform), OmiseGO (Blockchain FinTech), Ripple (Distributed Transaction Protocol), Cardano (Internet of Blockchain Platform), ADEX (Blockchain Ad Exchange).
Faisal is a limited partner of the Silicon Valley-based Venture Capital Fund 500 Startups.
He holds an MBA from Oxford University Said Business School. Additionally, he holds joint bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Accounting, Economics and Management Information Systems from Michigan State University USA.
Kalsoom is the Founder/CEO of Invest2Innovate, which aims to support and unleash the potential of young entrepreneurs in growth markets like Pakistan. She’s also a Partner at i2i Ventures, Invest2Innovate’s early stage investment fund for Pakistan, and the country’s first female-led fund.
She has also trained young entrepreneurs, changemakers, and civil society leaders in Kosovo, Nepal, Cambodia, Ireland, Bangladesh, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan, and has spoken at numerous venues, including the World Economic Forum, Aspen Ideas Festival, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, U.S. State Department, the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, and the Global Entrepreneurship Congress.
She was previously a Washington, D.C. co-ambassador for Sandbox, a global network of innovators under 30, and was a World Economic Forum Global Shaper. She was featured in Diplomatic Courier's Top 99 Foreign Policy Leaders under 33 in 2012, and was named an Ashoka Changemakers/ American Express Emerging Innovator for 2013.
Zouhair Khaliq is a business executive with global experience in telecom and technology with deep experience in Board strategy, operations, startups, turnarounds, M&A, mobile money, micro-finance and real estate. He is Managing Partner at ICE Advisory LLP, Co-Founder and Partner at TeamUp, the service delivery partner to the National Incubation Centre, Former CEO of Jazz (previously known as Mobilink). He holds a portfolio of Advisory and Non-Executive Board positions. He has worked with Orascom Telecom Holdings, the GSM Association, Gemini Holdings (Sawiris Family Office), Motorola UK, the Dhabi Group, Millicom International, the ICI Group and PWC.
Zouhair was a key part of the launch team at Mobilink in 1993-96. As CEO, June 2003-08, he led Mobilink to be the largest mobile operator and the largest private sector company in the country and amongst the top 5 fastest growing mobile companies in the region. He's led group initiatives in mobile money, infrastructure sharing, restructured a mobile company and carved out a Wi-Max business for sale. He has led mobile operator launches in Egypt, Algeria,Tunisia, Pakistan and Jordan. He has served on the Boards of mobile operations in Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Jordan, and on the Boards of Islamabad Stock Exchange, the Ignite Fund and as Senior Advisor to the Better Than Cash Alliance, UNCDF. He was till recently Non Exec Director at Du (Emirates Integrated Telecom Investment Holdings Limited_
He is currently an advisor on tech startups, Co-Founder of TeamUp, an incubator and mentoring platform, and the service delivery partner to the National Incubation Centre in Islamabad, a Public-Private Partnership with the Government. He is Managing Partner ICE Advisory LLP, Non Exec Director at Engro Foods Limited, and on the Advisory Board of FieldForceLLC, a software analytics company. He is on the Board of Regents, Harris Manchester College, Oxford University, member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales and an alumni of INSEAD, France.
Yaseer Bashir is a veteran of Pakistan's growing tech industry. In a career spanning 20 years, Yasser has helped build software for diverse problems in industries ranging from online travel, to online education, immersive learning, healthcare and retail.
Yasser is currently the Co-Founder and CEO of Arbisoft which is among the fastest growing software and technology development companies in the country. Arbisoft employs over 400 people and has been building technology partnerships with some of the leading businesses and institutions around the world. Before the start of his entrepreneurial journey, Yasser held key engineering leadership positions at Orthoclear, Align Technology and WorldWerx. Yasser holds a BS from LUMS and an MS from Stanford University.
Ali Mukhtar is the Founder, CEO of Fatima Ventures. He founded the young and progressive venture capital in 2014 with the vision to support the startup ecosystem of Pakistan. He is a graduate from University of Pennsylvania and under his leadership, Fatima Ventures has already invested to date in MangoBaaz, Beauty Hooked, Interacta, Airlift and others.
Khurram Zafar is currently serving as Country Director of 47 Ventures, an international Venture Capital firm exclusively focused on early stage investments in high-growth-potential technology businesses in Pakistan. He is also a private sector, independent member of the Prime Minister’s Task Force on Technology Driven Knowledge Economy. Previously, as Executive Director at Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), he founded the Center for Entrepreneurship, now called National Incubation Center, Lahore. Aside from founding and managing center operations, Khurram provided technology, architecture, financial and investment related mentoring to incubated businesses. Khurram has been an adviser to both Federal and Punjab governments in matters related to higher education, research, technology, agriculture, investments, innovation and startup ecosystem. He is also a founding member of the Pakistan Innovation Foundation.
Previously Khurram was Chief Information Officer at Lahore Stock Exchange where he led the technology operations for one of the highest transactional throughput and massively federated capital markets technology platforms in Pakistan. He was recognized as the best private sector CIO in Pakistan while at the Stock Exchange.
Before that, in Silicon Valley, California, Khurram co-founded Epiance and Insight Technologies. Epiance was a product company that automated the process of documentation generation for software systems while Insight Technologies used the IP for automation of human-executed, IT-enabled businesses processes for the BPO industry. Earlier in United States, at eForce and Haddon Hill Group, Khurram worked as Vice President of Technology and served Fortune 500 companies across the globe in various consulting capacities for customer relationship management, business process automation, document and workflow management, enterprise applications integration, infrastructure and security projects. Key clients included Visa, Merrill Lynch, Bank of America, Sony, DHL and several venture capital firms including Greylock, Norwest Venture Partners, CapitalZ and Visa Ventures. Khurram also founded and led the Security and Infrastructure Technology practice at eForce. He is a Prentice Hall published author on wireless networking technology.
Khurram did his Bachelor in Computer Engineering from McGill University in Canada in 1997, and while there, won an IBM led North America wide Java language programming contest spanning 1500 participants from Ivy League and other top universities. Khurram is a Pakistan Institute of Corporate Governance approved, LUMS trained, independent director also. Khurram loves reading, writing and farming.
Khurram’s current board engagements include Karandaaz Pakistan, Mobilink Microfinance Bank, Aequitas Information Services Limited and Punjab Pension Fund.
Muneeb Maayr graduated with a bachelors in Economics from the University of Virginia and worked in investment banking at Bear Stearns in New York City before returning to Islamabad to set up a back office for US-based SNL Financial, a financial content collection company. From 2004 to 2012, Muneeb helped build a 600 person back office for SNL operating 24/7 collecting data on public companies in the US.
In 2012 when PE firm New Mountain Capital acquired SNL, Muneeb exited to join Rocket Internet as Co-Founder and CEO of Daraz, an Amazon style marketplace of consumer and fashion goods that sold to Alibaba Group in 2018. After 4 years of building Daraz, Muneeb founded Bykea, a marketplace of services offered by a network of motorcycles that today serves over a million Pakistanis, where he continues to build products and find tech solutions for urban Pakistanis. He has not given any TED talks before.
Faizan Aslam, Founder & CEO of e-ticketing startup BookMe, was your typical college student. His first entrepreneurial endeavor was a simple printing business. Faizan, who shared his college dormitory with 2,500 other students, bought a basic Inkjet printer for approximately US$30 and started charging his peers a few cents for simple printing jobs. Alternative printing facilities were located a fair distance away and this rudimentary solution was cheap and convenient.
Unfortunately in the mid-2000s accessing the internet was a costly proposition in Pakistan. Luckily for him, a new internet service provider was setting up shop in Islamabad and was eager to cater to students. Faizan, at the time a college sophomore, visited their office and negotiated a special deal and helped market the service amongst his peers, earning commissions on each sale. In his first month alone he sold more than 500 modems, making a handsome profit of almost US$3,500.
Eventually sales hit a plateau but by now Faizan was hooked onto the entrepreneurial bug. He knew the internet was a great equalizer and wanted to leverage it further. Faizan, a software engineer by training, roped in a friend and opened an account on freelance site Rent A Coder. He nabbed his first few projects almost immediately: designing websites and logos, and dabbling in data entry and setup a formal company after graduation.
The new company, Makro Pak Solutions, no longer relied on freelancing platforms to source projects. Faizan’s roster of clients had grown to an extent that he was able to tap existing networks for outsourcing/consulting work. As he scaled up, his team grew to more than 30 people. Unfortunately, disaster struck and Makro Pak Solutions had to be wrapped up due to receivables of around US$65,000, Faizan was forced to lay off almost all his staff. The ones who remained did so out of personal loyalty rather than unbridled optimism for the future.
Faizan was now back to square one but determined to forge a new path. By now Faizan was married. After two failed attempts to buy cinema tickets with his wife, he understood this was undoubtedly a pain point experienced by other consumers. His new startup, BookMe, an online ticketing portal for movies, events, and buses was borne out of a desire to help others. Since launch, BookMe has been making steady progress. It’s been a Startup Arena finalist at Tech in Asia Jakarta 2014, expanded operations to Myanmar, and most importantly raised cash valuing the firm at US$4 million.
“I’ve applied all the learnings from my previous failures in BookMe,” explains Faizan. “We try to be as lean as possible, diversify revenue channels, and keep building products that our users want. Nothing can ever be perfect but it’s important to keep learning and growing.”
Misbah Naqvi has 20+ years of global experience in finance, impact investing, development, and fintech in Pakistan and the US. She is currently the Managing Partner of i2i Ventures, a US$15m founder friendly, seed capital fund, focused on early-stage enterprises in Pakistan to address the capital gap faced by Pakistani startups & SMEs.
Misbah has previously worked at Boloro Global Ltd, a US-based fintech startup, Acumen, a social venture fund in Pakistan and the US, and Citibank Pakistan. She has been on the Invest2Innovate (i2i) Board of Advisors since 2011. Misbah holds an MBA from the Institute of Business Administration, Karachi.
Zain Haider Awan is a multi-award winning advocate and youth in development specialist. With over 8 years of experience, Zain’s work in humanitarianism was ignited by his passion for youth in international development. As the youngest serving director of the British Youth Council in its 60 years, Zain implemented specialist programs and partnerships including a nationwide campaign for education advocacy in Pakistan with the British Council, leading workshops for the Commonwealth Education Ministers Meeting in Mauritius and co-managing a youth opportunity fund for young social entrepreneurs.
Through his experience in digital campaigns, Zain has worked as a marketing and communications consultant to the Department for Communities and Local Government (UK), served as the Director of Marketing for a Y.C. backed tech start-up and established an innovation department for one of the fastest growing NGOs in the UK. His advocacy work has centered around youth inclusion in policy making, education equality and internet rights for developing nations with the European Commission.
Zain in his current role at Re:Coded oversees operations and growth, with direct management of the cutting edge facilities and offerings at Re:Coded House. Working on his strength, Zain’s is passionate about establishing multi-disciplinary and creative approaches to developing the next generation of leaders. He is regularly invited to consult on innovative and creative solutions to development issues.
Ahmed Khan is the Founder & CEO of Cheetay Logistics Pvt. Ltd. One of Ahmed's startups, Kaymu.pk got acquired by Rocket Internet GmbH and he later joined the company as the MD Asia & Europe. Ahmed has been involved in a wide variety of roles from Analytics to IT to Operations to Consulting to Marketing to Finance. Currently he is pursuing an entrepreneurial wave, setting up companies for E-Commerce all over the world. He has set up online ventures for Etail, Classified and Marketplace in general and various verticals. Geographies he has launched include Pakistan, Myanmar, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Croatia, Belarus, Slovenia and a few others. He also serves on the Board of Punjab Mineral Development Corporation.
My name is Magnus Sparrholm. I founded the company Talkpool in year 2000 and I'm still working on developing its business including M&A, Joint Ventures and franchising. I enjoy spending time in the nature, especially while practicing sports.
I aim at improving people's lives by providing smart technology. By connecting things to the internet and managing those things in a sustainable manner, I believe we can create a better environment. Internet of Things, digitization and Artificial Intelligence are at the cutting-edge of innovative technologies that combined will enforce massive disruptive change across all industries. I believe we need to control the ever-smarter things in a very secure manner.
I'm looking for small and medium-sized businesses that have products that could be connected to internet and sold to clients in different parts of the world. I'm also looking for entrepreneurs with sustainable ideas that we could explore together.
Erdem Dereli is Founder and CEO of ENTREN(Entrepreneurship Expert Network). ENTREN is established to develop entrepreneurship ecosystem in all dimensions.
ENTREN has also Venture Capital and Technology dimensions.Erdem is the vice chairman of TOBB Istanbul Young Entrepreneurs Board which includes 18-40 aged second and third generations of leading family companies and entrepreneurs in Turkey.He is also vice chairman of Young MUSIAD(MUSIAD is biggest businesspeople association in Turkey).He serves as vice chairman of DEİK(Foreign Economic Relations Board) Turkey- Saudi Arabia Business Council and also executive committee member of Portugal and Norway.He has more than 10 brands and business models in different sectors.He has also trained young entrepreneurs, change-makers and civil society leaders.He is regularly invited to consult on innovative and creative solutions for development of entrepreneurship ecosystem. He also serves as advisor to venture capital funds and startups.Erdem graduated with a bachelor degree in Economics from Bogazici University.
Entrepreneurially driven technologist with 8+ years of experience in the entrepreneurship MENA region ecosystem. Since 2009 Mohammed has worked at or supported Social n’ Tech, Startup Grind, Startup Weekend, makesense, Seedstars, Riseup, and many other Entrepreneurship and Youth communities.
Mohammed has been recognized as a speaker at several events including RiseUp Summit, Digital Arabia Network, and Adobe World Tour. Mohammed has also been featured on various media channels like; BBC World, BBC Arabic, Al Jazeera, Sky News, MBC, AJ+, Al Ghad TV, Roya TV, ONTV, BBC Radio, National Newspaper, and Inc. Magazine.
Ali is a product-driven programmer, entrepreneur and angel investor. He founded Kiwi in 2013 that started with wearables, and then built on-device machine learning software & tools integrated by large companies like IBM Watson, Intel and leading Silicon Valley startups. In 2018, Ali joined Sentiance post acquisition. As SVP of Product | CTO Office, Ali learns about the right things to build to solve problems for the world’s leading companies in mobility, well-being and retail, using context based machine learning and behavior change. Ali has worked in 20+ countries with C-level technology executives on their toughest challenges with Booz & Co, and spent his early years as a programmer at Deloitte Consulting, managing 100+ person distributed teams. Ali loves new products, and helping founders. Ali is an angel investor (Hatchways YC2019, Trusted for YC2019, *stealth) & board member for high growth technology companies. He believes in Pakistan and that technology can exponentially improve people’s lives.
"Based in Washington DC area, Babar Nawaz is a seasoned entrepreneur, healthcare trailblazer specialized in the long term health and technology sectors, with over 15 years hands on experience in rapidly launching and organically growing companies. He is the founder of CRcareGroup a preeminent Assisted Living company in the greater Washington DC area delivering 24/7 care to the aging and elderly population, and a Co-founder and COO of iCareManager (iCM) a dynamic healthcare technology company focused on long term health and care coordination organizations. Having built and managed a healthcare service delivery company from the ground up, Babar searched for a technology solution that was designed to meet their specific needs around care coordination and documentation, day-to-day operations, and compliance. After realizing that there was no solution like this in the market, Babar endeavored to create and design his own system, Co-founding iCareManager (iCM), a flexible, dynamic web-based EHR and Care Management system. Much of iCM’s popularity and growth in the industry can be attributed to the unique perspective Babar brings in the designing the system as a healthcare provider himself. While Babar thrives as iCareManager’s COO, he continuously innovates and improves iCM with his Co-founder, tapping into his passions for technology and staying ahead of industry trends. To rapidly and strategically grow the company, Babar relies on his stellar team and his own experiences from iCM’s and CRcare Group’s earlier days when, in true entrepreneurial style, he proudly wore many hats to quickly catapult and grow their market share and installing smart home technologies and traveling the world with his family.
iCareManager(iCM) has grown organically since its inception in 2011 and has always maintained a software development division in Pakistan. The focus of the company has always been to engage in “nation building” activities in addition to producing software that delivers immense value to thousands of its users.The company’s leading software solution is in the Long Term Care and care coordination segments of healthcare, offering adynamic web-based (Saas) EHR and Care Management software system for an underserved segment of healthcare, catering to Assisted Livings, Developmentally Disabled Adults care organizations, Adult Day Cares, Home Health Agencies, and Nursing Homes. iCM has delivered a very powerful platform with an intuitive and easy to navigate system that simplifies daily operations and overhead by reducing healthcare and pharmacy risks, while concurrently keeping the organization in compliance through automated goal achievement analytics that support real time decision-making and actions. It is these outcomes and the energetic team behind iCM that has driven the company’s exponential growth in past few years, serving almost 10,000 individuals in North America."
"A global thought leader, disruptor and innovator with an entrepreneurial flair, Kaiser works as an international development banker and has conceptualized and developed new institutions and business models in challenging environments. Core competencies include New Ventures, MSME Banking, Project Financing, Team Building, Change Management, Business Development and Good Governance. Kaiser is a strategic thinker with strong ethical standards and focus on results. With exceptional business acumen and broad experience on a global stage he has served on the BODs of several international companies and provided strategic advice to senior management and business owners.
With an MBA in Finance from the Asian Institute of Management in Manila, an MS in Metallurgical Engineering from Moscow Institute of Steel & Alloys, a certification on ""Strategy in the Age of Digital Disruption"" from INSEAD, and over 36 years of international experience in development banking and finance, Kaiser has developed a network of diverse professionals in every corner of the globe whom he leverages to make sure that the UN Sustainable Development Goals are at the center of all business decisions."
"Residing in the greater New York City area, Kamal Sheikh is a software engineer and an entrepreneur of several startup companies with talent for designing and optimizing simple to use and powerful technology tools and applications for organizations. Kamal’s penchant for making the complex simple led him to take on the unique challenges in healthcare and create better solutions that support more efficient care coordination systems to improve quality and reduce costs, ensure adherence to requirements, and reduce overall risks. He joined forces to Co-found and be the CEO of iCareManager(iCM), a technology company that develops solutions to specifically address the needs of long term care and care coordination companies. Having recognized a big unmet demand and diversity of organizations in this ever growing and evolving sector of healthcare, Kamal is hyper-focused on bringing solutions that are scalable and offer flexible customizations for clients where a one size fits all approach may not be optimal. Kamal and his tech team sit at the intersection of ensuring easy and intuitive design, simplifying data and system architecture, and boosting system performance and processes. Leveraging these skills when actively engaging and collaborating with the business side is his passion, resulting in more meaningful solutions that are forward-thinking and anticipate new challenges on the horizon while also meeting the most immediate business objectives. Kamal holds a MS from the University of Maryland, and enjoys running and spending time in the outdoors with his family in his free time.
iCareManager(iCM) has grown organically since its inception in 2011 and has always maintained a software development division in Pakistan. The focus of the company has always been to engage in “nation building” activities in addition to producing software that delivers immense value to thousands of its users. iCM has a culture that nurtures leadership, organization, discipline, and a mindset that aims to produce self-managing, hyper-active, productive teams. The company’s leading software solution is in the Long Term Care and care coordination segments of healthcare, offering adynamic web-based (Saas) EHR and Care Management software system for an underserved segment of healthcare, catering to Assisted Livings, Developmentally Disabled Adults care organizations, Adult Day Cares, Home Health Agencies, and Nursing Homes. iCM has delivered a very powerful platform with an intuitive and easy to navigate system that simplifies daily operations and overhead by reducing healthcare and pharmacy risks, while concurrently keeping the organization in compliance through automated goal achievement analytics that support real time decision-making and actions. It is these outcomes and the energetic team behind iCM that has driven the company’s exponential growth in past few years, serving almost 10,000 individuals in North America. "
Rizwan Buttarisa researcher and serial entrepreneurfocused onInnovative Solutions in Pharmaceutical Industries and Healthcare sector. With over 15 years of experience in process optimization, process re-engineering, Research and Development, He has worked globally on projects for Auto Identification and Traceability in logistics, transportation, Cold Chain segments in various Industries i-e Food, Textiles, Garments, Pharmaceuticals and Health Care. Using Innovative Technologies to solve commercial and social problems has been has credo. He founded ZAUQ GROUP in Pakistan to provide a platform for Researchers in Pakistan to sustainably be able to Innovate and commercialize Technologies for Global markets.
ZAUQ GROUP has now an Innovation Hub in Pakistan and Bahrain and cater to EU, US, Middle East, South East Asia and African markets for it’s diversified solutions portfolio for a wide range of industries.
He is Founder of PHARMA TRAX Traceability Solution to address Regulatory and Commercial Traceability needs of Pharmaceutical Industries for GCC, EU and Pakistan markets. It is a suite of integrated modules which enables Pharmaceutical manufacturing and distribution companies to achieve Item Level Serialization, Trace-ability of Products and it’s Shipping units. This solution is specifically designed to cater to Health care and Pharmaceutical Industry’s initiatives for Patient Safety, Obsolesce Management, Recall Effectiveness, Drugs ownership tracking, Brand protection, Supply Chain visibility – EPCIS, Sales and Distribution tracking and Track and Trace in true spirit.
PHARMA TRAX is a Pharmaceuticals Trace-ability, Verification Solution to deter counterfeit drugs and provide effective Drug surveillance and Recall management system. PHARMA TRAXFocused on patient safety and reducing medication errors while re-enforcingTrust for Pharma brands with a Patient Centric Approach. In the last 3 years PHARMA TRAX has helped secure drugs worth approx. USD 600 million USD, with more than 200 million Packs of drugs secured; and helped save thousands of lives by deterring counterfeiting and ineffective drugs;
He is responsible for Innovation Driven growth at ZAUQ GROUP in Pakistan to provide a platform for Researchers to sustainably be able to Innovate and commercialize Technologies for Global markets. ZAUQ GROUPis working on an Innovation Hub in Pakistan and Bahrain and cater to EU, US, Middle East, South East Asia and African markets for it’s diversified solutions portfolio for a wide range of industries with focus on Health Care Transformations.
Shauzab Ali is SECP Commissioner for Specialized Companies Division, Investor Education & International Relations Department, Anti Money Laundering Department, Information Systems and Technology Department, Information Security Department. Mr. Shauzab Ali is a Chartered Accountant with more than 25 years of professional experience with focus on development banking and finance, corporate banking, project finance, corporate finance, portfolio management, planning & budgeting and financial management. Before his appointment as Commissioner in March 2018, he was with the Asian Development Bank where he was responsible for all the public finance and financial sector activities of the Asian Development Bank in Pakistan. Prior to that, he worked with Standard Chartered and Allied Bank in senior positions in corporate and investment banking and financial control functions. He has also worked for the NBFC sector in senior positions including CFO of an investment bank and the Lahore Stock Exchange.
Over the course of 15 years Muhammad Nasrullah (Nash) has started 4 startups in Pakistan and sold 3 of them. He’s grown companies to millions of users, hundreds of business customers and has raised several million dollars from Pakistan and abroad. He’s a technical founder and has written several patents and has designed architecture that scale to billions of transactions. He’s also an enterprise sales veteran and is passionate about using technology to bring change.
He’s currently on a mission to connect all the world’s apps together as founder and CEO of Integry.
"Amer is a successful entrepreneur and early-stage angel investor in Silicon Valley. Amer started his career in the valley in 1999 as a VPN product manager at SonicWall (SNWL). Amer joined Cavium (CAVM) as an early employee in 2001. During his 13 years at Cavium, he grew from product management to ecosystem management to VP corporate and business development, reporting to the CEO. In 2014 Amer left Cavium to co-found and become the CEO of Doctella, a remote patient monitoring company that was acquired by Masimo (MASI) in 2018. Amer's operational expertise spans across network security, workload-specific processors, cloud and SaaS applications, digital health, ecosystem development, M&A, deal structures and early-stage investments. He has 11 patents in areas of digital security and processing.
As an investor, Amer has privately funded 14 companies. Notable successes include Bitzer Mobile where he incubated the company and was Chairman of the board. Bitzer was acquired by Oracle in 2013. Amer was an angel investor and advisor in Flutter. Flutter was acquired in 2013 by Google. Amer invested in Organ-i that was acquired by Immucor in 2014. Amer incubated and invested in Altia Systems that was acquired by GN Audio (Jabre) in 2019. Amer's active early-stage investments include MatterNet, Excitem and 2 stealth companies in robotics and online education.
During Amer's tenure as VP of Corp. Dev. at Cavium he evaluated hundreds of deals. He completed 10+ deals ranging from asset purchases, cross border acquisitions, and a spin-in like deal that was covered in SDX central.
Amer with his wife Munira operate two non-profits related to congenital conditions of their children. Pehla Qadam focuses on eliminating untreated clubfoot in Pakistan and the world (www.pehlaqadam.org). Growing Stronger focuses on improving the quality of medical care for little people (www.growingstronger.org). Amer has an MS in Numerical Simulation and an MBA from U of IL at Urbana Champaign.
Senior Adviser for the City of Oslo’s Department of Business Development and Public Ownership, and a board member at Oslo Innovation Week (OIW). With a Law Degree from the University of Oslo and TTO class from IC2 in Austin, Texas. Works strategically to improve communication across the public silos and co-founded an Innovation Group across City Departments and Agencies. She works to lower the barrier between the private and the public sector, with focus on startups and international relations. Kristin works with International relations and facilitated International Reception for 250 guests at City Hall during Oslo Innovation Week 2019. She also enabled -from the Oslo City side -for the first Pakistan Tech Summit at OIW2019. Project manager for KOSC(www.kosc.no) In connection with OIW 2016 (Power coupling) four Startups from Karachi, Pakistan, won a month's stay in Startup Lab in Oslo. This was a collaboration between TelenorGroup, ICT Norway, StartupLab and MAKorg and KITE. Project manager for #Oslo and friends- a three day event where the Oslo showed its innovation power, during OIW 2017. Project manager of the MOUs the City of Oslo has with Austin, Texas and Hackney, London. Instrumental in the creation of Tøyen Startup Village, after inspiration from our Hackney Cooperation in London. And after inspiration from Austin got Food Trucks out on the streets of Oslo
Mark researches science-based technologies, aka Deep Tech, ranging from synthetic biology to quantum computing, to help companies develop and deploy them. Over 20 years and across 40 countries, he has worked as a management consultant, technology analyst, lab researcher, and entrepreneur at Accenture, Forrester Research, UCSF, Lux Research, and several startups. He has served as chairman of the Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce and guest lectures at the University of California Berkeley. Mark brings together his background covering artificial intelligence and works with clients in artistic, engineering, and innovative industries. He curates and co-develops AI-based systems for creating humor, visual and musical arts, and human-machine co-innovation.
Mahboob Mahmood is the Founder and CEO of Knowledge Platform. In addition to setting overall strategy and direction, he plays a leading role in new learning initiatives and developing innovative learning solutions.
He has led the company in its design and deployment of Reusable Learning Objects, Scenario-Based Learning and Interactive Simulations and is now leading the company’s efforts in the area of Adaptive Learning Solutions for the schools sector. He has also acted as lead designer for online courses as well as blended learning courses in Compliance, Corporate Governance, Entrepreneurship, Intellectual Property Management and Risk Management.
Formerly a partner at the international law firm of Sidley & Austin, Mahboob spent 11 years handling corporate finance transactions in the firm’s New York office, before establishing the firm’s Singapore office in 1997. Mahboob has broad industry experience and has been lead counsel for many complex transactions in the high-tech, financial services, media, utilities and transportation sectors. He has worked with major clients in implementing their business strategies in the United States and many countries of Asia and has handled a number of privatization assignments for The World Bank in Asia and the Middle East.
Mahboob received his J.D. from Columbia Law School in 1986, his M.A. in Political Science from The Johns Hopkins University in 1987 and B.A. in Politics from Princeton University in 1981. He was admitted to the New York State Bar in 1987.
Mahboob is Member of the Board of Trustees of the Institute of International Education. He has served as Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship at INSEAD, where he has designed and taught an MBA program on social entrepreneurship and has developed case studies and led research on entrepreneurship, social entrepreneurship and philanthropy.
Dr Shahbaz Khan is an experienced professional having worked in leadership roles with provincial and federal government bodies, private and development sectors specializing in developing Digital Policy and Strategy for digital transformation at provincial scale with a focus on digital access, digital governance, digital economy and digital skills. As Managing Director of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Information Technology Board, an autonomous body of the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for the promotion of ICT both in the public and private sectors, he has the role of Chief Digital Officer of the province; responsible to enable transformation that covers a landscape with digital enablement of over 204 government institutions/autonomous bodies, creating opportunities for 15 million youth, accelerating financial and gender inclusion, and supporting innovation. He led a team that launched the first Digital Policy for the province, translated the policy at the strategic level, successfully collaborated with a wide range of stakeholders, generated trust through delivery and efficiency, brought in investments for development and delivered a record number of flagship initiatives across the province.
"Mr. Salman Amin carries a rich and extensive experience in strategic and operational leadership role in both private and public sectors. The diversity and depth of his experience in multiple and complex industries within and outside Pakistan span over twenty one years. Throughout his career he’s lead teams managing projects in the field of Financial Services, ICT & Telecom, Management Consulting and ICT4D. His core domains are project management, teams and system development, creativity & innovation and business development.
Being a part of e-governance team, Salman successfully managed & delivered Punjab Public Management Reform Program (PPMRP). A World Bank funded ($50 mil) five year program that covered technological interventions in GoPb for Resource Monitoring, Improved Service Delivery & G2C Communication. Key departments including Health, Education, Irrigation, Agriculture, Livestock were part of program. PPMRP was hailed as a one of fifteen global success stories by World Bank in a report published in October 2018 for its interventions and impact across Punjab. He has also led teams managing major government initiatives on Clean Drinking Water, Sanitation and G2C communication.
He’s currently managing a portfolio of Local Government & Community Development, Livestock & Dairy Development, Irrigation, Youth Affairs, Sports, Archeology, Tourism, Business Development & Partnerships, Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development. Program in his portfolio including e-Rozgaar, Plan9 have been approved federal government for national rollout."
"Sardar Mohammad Abubakr has more than 16 years of diversified experience in expat and project roles from over 7 countries including Telenor Group in Norway, Telenor Pakistan and Cable & Wireless Communications Maldives. In addition to ICT space, he also has significant cross industry exposure including Manufacturing, Retail, Banking, and Not for Profit Sectors from his time with PwC.
Abubakr has been associated with Telenor since the past 13 years in various roles across Finance, Strategy and Transformation. Abubakr took on the role of Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer in 2017 and took on additional responsibilities as acting Chief Finance Officer in June 2018. Currently, he is serving as a Chief Digital and Strategy Officer at Telenor Pakistan where he is heading dynamic portfolio of digital products, including content, gaming, agriculture, digital distribution in addition to Company Strategy & Transformation
Patchamuthu Illangovan (Illango) has been the World Bank Country Director for Pakistan since October 2015. Mr. Illangovan counts over three decades of international development experience. He joined the World Bank in 1993 and has since served in many positions including leadership roles in Europe and Central Asia, East Asia and Pacific, and South Asia regions of the World Bank. He has also held managerial responsibilities in the Bank’s country offices in Bangkok, Vientiane and Kabul. Illango has managed programs and projects in many middle- and low-income countries, including leading teams that have delivered complex and innovative solutions to Bank clients in water, environment, natural resources, energy and urban sectors. He has extensive experience in overseeing the implementation of portfolios in challenging country environments. Prior to joining the Bank, he worked in the public and private sectors in Sri Lanka.
Dr. Musstanser Tinauli is a smart city influencer, an innovator and an enabler. He has been working towards creating smarter cities for over a decade and has partnered with prestigious institutions like MIT and led projects in cities like New York, Seattle and Bolzano. Recipient of multiple prestigious fellowships as a recognition of his works including IBM PhD and Roberto Rocca Fellowship, his works have been exhibited at the London Museum, Seattle Public Library and Architectural League of New York. His works have been featured in likes of Discovery Channel, US News, BBC and Tech in Asia. Fori Inc / Fori Mazdoori, a start-up initiative that he founded in 2014 has been featured among the leading gig-economy platforms in emerging markets. Dr. Tinauli is an eloquent keynote speaker, a deep-dive design design thinking expert and has multiple TEDx talks to his credit.
"Job Title, current: Head of Research and Development
Bio: Aamer Zaheer leads Research and Development spanning Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Machine Learning and Robotics. KeepTruckin R&D is a unique Pakistan based team of this scale building cutting edge products for a Silicon Valley unicorn. Prior to joining KeepTruckin, he founded Groopic/Ingrain - a 500 Startups funded company creating augmented reality technology. He received PhD from LUMS where he worked on fundamental problems in Geometric Computer Vision.
Maryam Arshad is Founder and Director of Impact Dynamics- an enterprise that creates and curates curriculum for entrepreneurs and runs workshops centred towards tech and soft skills. I have trained people in multiple capacities on subject areas like The Art of Selling, The Art of Negotiation, Digital Storytelling, Google Analytics, Community Building ,Growth Hacking for Startups etc.
Dr. Sarah Qureshi is the CEO and founding director of Aero Engine Craft (Pvt) Ltd, Pakistan's first commercial engine and aircraft company. Aero Engine craft is addressing three SDG goals; climate, water and innovation through the development of an environmentally safe aircraft engine for the global market known as the Contrail-free Aero-engine. The invented engine has a tremendous potential in bringing about an environmental revolution in the context of aviation. Sarah is also a visiting fellow at the School of Aerospace at Cranfield University. She has a PhD degree in Aerospace Engineering from Cranfield University, UK. Her area of specialization is Propulsion whereby she researched actively towards the invented technical outcome of the Contrail-free Aero-engine. Dr. Sarah Qureshi along with the inventor of technology Mr. Masood Latif Qureshi has now set up Aero Engine Craft to convert this patented technology into a full scale commercial application ready to be used by modern civil transport aircraft. During her PhD, Sarah supervised a number of MSc. students for their research projects on Jet Engine Technology. Prior to this, She completed her master’s degree in the field of Aerospace Dynamics from Cranfield University, UK. She conducted research on the design of a trajectory following controller inclusive of stability augmentation, attitude control system and outer loop autopilot for unmanned aircraft (UAVs) flying in close formation for the purpose of air to air refuelling. Graduating as a Mechanical Engineer from Pakistan, Sarah gained extensive experience of working in the local automotive and engineering industry. Her research involved the development of a measurement and data logging system for the in-cylinder temperature and combustion of an internal combustion engine. Sarah’s prime technical interests are engine technology and aircraft design. In addition, she holds a Private Pilot License (PPL) with 70 hours of Flying Experience and has also learned acrobatic flying and several flight manoeuvres while at Cranfield.
With over 12 years of professional experience, Cynia has a diverse set of skills in the fields of Digital and Field Marketing, Program Management, Production, Startup Growth, Strategy and Community Building. She had held senior executive positions with multinationals such as Red Bull, UK Department For International Development and Telenor Pakistan. She is also an entrepreneur by heart and dedicates her free time to her own startup. Cynia has spent the past 3+ years working alongside startups to enable them to accelerate and grow.
She also coaches startups and has conducted trainings in Entrepreneurship, Branding & Marketing, Communication Skills & Pitching.
"Sumera is the head of WECREATE, Pakistan’s first women entrepreneurship center providing physical facilities and business development support to women in business. With an educational background of business in information technology from Curtin University of Technology, Australia, Sumera has extensive technical and strategic project management experience, both in the corporate and development sector. Sumera mentors businesses, particularly women-led, on launching and scaling their businesses through various programs and initiatives at WECREATE.
Sumera is an alumnus of the U.S. State Department’s premier professional exchange program, the International Visitors Leadership Program (IVLP) ‘Women in Entrepreneurship’ 2017, and TechCamp South Asia 2018. She is also a 'Friend' of the US Pakistan Women's Council, and an Ambassador for Pakistan Alliance for Girls Education (PAGE) and a member of PUAN."
Arzish specialises in community building, entrepreneurship, youth advocacy and innovation travel. The youngest global graduate from Founder Institute, a highly celebrated Silicon Valley accelerator, has hosted 35+ leading entrepreneurs, technology experts and investors including Haseeb Awan, Idris Kothari, Ali Mukhtar and others in his talk shows and has directly helped 100+ startups and SMEs in global exposure.
He is the brain behind PAK-US Tech Exchange, the largest private tech exchange program connecting Pakistan and Silicon Valley. His exposure from being Pakistan's youth representative at Obama's Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2016 in Stanford, Organization of Islamic Corporation's Youth Entrepreneurship Forum 2017 and 2018 in Kazan, Russia, Startup Grind Global Conference 2018 in Silicon Valley, Web Summit 2018, Startup Grind Barcelona Conference and SXSW2019 etc. brings the gamut of relevant experiences and rich understanding of the field. He uses this to empower the youth of his nation with similar worthy global exposures, network and experiences.
He further leverages his leadership at the local chapters of international technology communities like Startup Grind and Google Business Group to create a robust and well knitted entrepreneurial ecosystem. He is also an alumnus of Plan9 – Punjab Information Technology Board’s Technology Incubator and the National Incubation Center in Islamabad.