Speakers

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Abderahmane, BERTHE
Secretary General ,African Airlines Association (AFRAA)
Mr Berthe was the CEO of Air Mali and Air Burkina. He has 28 years’ experience in airline industry and a total of 16 years as an airline CEO.

Mr Berthe built his career in various Airlines and multicultural environment both in Europe and Africa at positions such as aircraft performance and dispatch engineering, maintenance and operations quality, ground operations and Chief Executive Officer.

Abdérahmane is graduated from:
- French Civil Aviation school in Toulouse (1987 Master Of Science degree).
- French Aeronautical and Space school in Toulouse (1988 Master Of Science degree)
- Business Institute in Toulouse (1989 Master degree)

He also obtained a Private Pilot License in 1985 for Single Engine Aircrafts.

Ato Tewolde
Ato Tewolde Gebremariam
Group CEO, Ethiopian Airlines
Tewolde GebreMariam was appointed as Group Chief Executive Officer of Ethiopian Airlines in January 2011. He began his career at Ethiopian in 1985 as Transportation Agent and held a number of senior leadership positions in different divisions in the Airline including Ethiopian Cargo, Area Offices and Sales & Marketing.

In his role as CEO, Mr. Tewolde has been a multiple award winner including ‘African CEO of the Year’, ‘Best African Business Leader’, ‘The Airline Strategy Award for Regional Leadership’, ‘The Most Gender Focused CEO Award’, Most Influential People of African Descent ‘Airline Executive of the year Award’, ‘Africa’s Business Man of the Year Award and
He was also among 100 most influential Africans for 2 consecutive years in 2019 and 2020.
Mr. Tewolde also serves as a member of the High-Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport with United Nations, Chief Executive Board member of Star Alliance, Board member of International Air Transport Association (IATA) and Airlink Advisory Council.
Additionally, he is an Executive Committee member of the African Airlines Association (AFRAA), a member of Board of Directors of Africa Travel Association (ATA) and Board of Directors of Ethiopian Tourism Organization (ETO).

Mr. Tewolde graduated from Addis Ababa University with B.A. Degree in Economics. He earned his Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Open University in the United Kingdom. He has received Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humane Letters Honoris Causa from Addis Ababa University in July 2019.

H.E Dagmawit Moges
H.E. Dagmawit Moges Bekele
Minister of Transport, Ethiopia
H.E. Dagmawit Moges Bekele was appointed as Minister of Transport of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia in October 2018. After studying for her BA in Public Administration and Development Management (PADM), she worked as a Graduate Assistant Lecturer at Addis Ababa University (A.A.U). She acquired her MA in Public Management and Policy (MPMP) from the same department and university. She worked as a General Manager of Kolfe Keraneyo Sub-City of A.A City Government and then served as Micro and small Enterprises Development Bureau Head of A.A city Government. Subsequently she worked as a Deputy Bureau head of Addis Ababa City Government Trade and Industry Bureau then a Deputy Bureau head of Addis Ababa City Government Capacity Building Bureau. Before her current post she has served as a Deputy Mayor and Communication’s Affaires bureau head of Addis Ababa City Government, Cabinet member of the City Government and Board Chairperson of Addis Ababa Mass Media Agency Board. H.E. Dagmawit Moges is a Cabinet member of FDRE and a Member of House of People’s Representatives of Ethiopia (HoPRE). She is a Board chairperson of Ethiopian Roads Authority (ERA), Woldiya University and Ethiopian Postal Service Enterprise. She is also a Board member of Ethiopian Airlines, Ethiopian Petroleum Enterprise, Investment board member and Public Private Partnership (PPP) board member.
H.E. Dagmawit Moges is one of the 15 African Women who are Amujae Leaders in the Amujae Initiative Program led by Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Presidential Center for Women and Development (EJS Center).
Kamil
Mr. Kamil H. Al-Awadhi
Regional Vice President Middle East and Africa - IATA
Kamil is Regional Vice-President for Africa and Middle East (AME), one of the most dynamic and fastest-growing regions in aviation. Kamil represents IATA in 68 countries, serving 57 airlines across AME. He leads the execution of IATA’s global strategic priorities at the regional level and advocates on behalf of industry to maintain global safety levels, enhance connectivity particularly across Africa, to reduce costs for airlines and to ensure the sustainability of air transport in the region.
He works hand in hand with regional partners such as AACO, ACAO AFCAC, AFRAA, and ICAO regional offices towards the advancement of air transport as a social and economic enabler and driver in the region.
Prior to joining IATA, Kamil was the CEO of Kuwait Airways and held various key positions at the airline in the areas of safety, security, quality management and enterprise resource planning over his 31-year career in the aviation industry.
A national of Kuwait, Al-Awadhi holds an MBA in Aerospace Management from the Toulouse Business School and an Engineering degree in Aircraft Maintenance Management from Air Service Training (AST) in the UK.
Tefera-Mekonnen-881x876
Mr. Tefera Mekonnen Tefera
Secretary General, African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC)
Ms.Raffaella Irie
Ms. Raffaella Irie
Data and Statistics Director, African Airlines Association
Raffaella IRIE is a young professional totalizing 15 years of experience in the airline industry. She joined the Marketing Department of SN Air Ivoire where she gained experience until 2012. In July 2012, she joined Air Côte d'Ivoire, the new national airline of Côte d'Ivoire, as Revenue Management Analyst. She was in charge of revenue management, management of interline agreements and code sharing, GDS helpdesk and trainer for 07 years. Currently, Raffaella IRIE serves as the Manager, Data and Statistics at African Airlines Association (AFRAA), a position she has held since January 2019.
She is a holder of a Technical Diploma in Statistics from ENSEA Abidjan and a Master's degree in Data Science and Big Data
With passion and professionalism, her ambition is to make AFRAA become a hub for data, intelligence and expertise on the African Aviation Industry.
Adefunke Adeyemi
Ms. Adefunke Adeyemi
Regional Director, Advocacy and Strategic Relations, Africa and Middle East – IATA
Adefunke Adeyemi was recently honoured as one of the 200 globally Most Influential People of African Descent (MIPAD) in affiliation with the United Nations Decade for People of African Descent. An alumnus of the University of Cambridge, she is a catalyst of change, a transformative thought leader and influencer, positively impacting lives and the business environment through her passion, work and initiatives. She is focused on bringing value, best practices and international standards to sectors, industries, businesses and government, through her work and career spanning 20 years. She is a lawyer, advocate and global aviation expert.

In her current role as Regional Director, Advocacy & Strategic Relations for Africa at the International Air Transportation Association (IATA), Adefunke advocates for the sustainability and growth of the aviation industry across the region, highlighting its value to economies and societies as an enabler and catalyst for development and growth, and a force for social good. Adefunke is responsible for conceptualising and delivering an ongoing campaign regarding the transformation of Africa’s socio-economic prospects through improved air connectivity across the continent, resulting in the launch of the Single African Air Transport Market by African Heads of State in January 2018, which could translate to billions of dollors in GDP and thousands of jobs for Africa. She is IATA’s focal point for its implementation across the continent.
She attended the University of Lagos for her undergradualte law degree followed by a Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree from University of Cambridge, U.K. She also holds a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from the Nanyang Business School, NTU, Singapore, during which she simultaneously completed a collaborative Advanced Management Program in Aviation, Leadership and Innovation between the Nanyang Business School, Berkeley Haas School of Business, University of California and the Wharton Business School, University of Pennsylvania.

Ali (2)
Mr. Ali Tounsi
Secretary General, ACI Africa
Mr Ali TOUNSI is an Engineer, holder of a Master in avionic and telecommunication and a Master in airports management. He began his career in aviation in 1992 as an engineer in the field of airport operations at the Office de l’Aviation Civile et des Aeroport (OACA) Tunisia, involved in studies and projects related to quality of service, airport resources management, infrastructure development projects and IT projects. He also gave courses for 14 years in many aviation schools and supervised several research projects.

Mr TOUNSI held positions as Director of international airports of Tozeur Nefta and Djerba Zarzis airports in Tunisia and held the position of Operations Director of all Tunisian Airports. He was chairman of the steering committee for the implementation of the certification and SMS Implementation program for Tunisian airports.

Since 2009, Mr. Ali TOUNSI is the Secretary General of ACI Africa, whose prime objective is to advance the interests of African airports and to promote professional excellence in airport management and operations.

Elcia (4)
Ms. Elcia Grandcourt
Director - Regional Department for Africa, UNWTO
Originally from the Seychelles, Elcia Grandcourt joined the World TourismOrganisation, a United Nations specialised Agency for Tourism in 2013 as Director, of the Regional Department for Africa. Elcia began her tourism career studying Hotel Management in Singapore at the Singapore Hotel Association and Education Centre (SHATEC). Thereafter, she occupied various positions in operations, reservations and sales mainly in hotels, including leading international brands such as Le Meridien and Hilton Worldwide Resorts. She was part of the rebranding team when Hilton Worldwide Resorts took over the management of the then Northolme hotel in Seychelles. She worked with the Seychelles national airline and destination management companies before joining the public sector to Seychelles Tourism Board as deputy CEO before being promoted to Chief Executive Officer, a position she occupied prior to joining UNWTO. Passionate about tourism, Elcia is honoured to be able to contribute towards sustainable tourism development in Africa.
Elcia also holds a Master in Dynamics of Cooperation, Conflicts and Negotiation in
International Relations and Diplomacy
Ms Boni Dibate
Mrs. Boni Dibate
Director Africa Affairs, CANSO
ChristopherViatte
Mr. Christophe Viatte
Senior Airline Executive, Sabre Corporation
Christophe Viatte is a senior airline executive with over 20 years of extensive commercial experience with airlines especially in the field of pricing, revenue management, scheduling, network planning and business development. He joined Sabre Airline Solutions in August 2018 from Alitalia where he was Executive Director in charge of the overall O&D revenue optimization including systems, people and processes. Prior to Alitalia, Mr. Viatte held several key positions with airlines in Europe and North America such as Chief Commercial Officer with Air Baltic, Executive Director with Czech Airlines, Head of Revenue Management & Founding Member of Porter Airlines and Network Revenue Manager with Air Canada. He started his successful career back in 1998 as Revenue Analyst with EasyJet. Mr. Viatte also holds a Bsc. in Management from University of Quebec in Montreal.
SteveDuley
Mr. Steve Duley
Sales Director, EMEA at Sabre Corporation
A qualified and experienced professional with Master degrees in Aeronautical Engineering and in Business Administration, with 35+ years’ experience gained in both the aerospace and aviation environments in both technical and management areas. In the past 25 years, his experience has broadened working in the IT & Telecommunications and Travel Technology fields related to the air transport industry.

Experience includes management of highly qualified staff in the aerospace engineering environment, management of an aircraft maintenance organization, management of an airline operational environment and management of the IT Division in an airline. Most recent experiences were management of airline technology solution sales within Sub-Sahara Africa within a global, multi-cultural organization supplying the airline industry. This includes exposure throughout Africa and Middle East. Steve joined Sabre Airline Solutions in 2012 and is currently the Sales Director for EMEA responsible for technology sales to airlines in Sub-Sahara Africa.

A self-motivated professional and team player with excellent communication skills at all levels within customers, partners and suppliers in a multi-cultural environment.

Jon Howell
Mr. Jon Howell
Founder and CEO - AviaDev Africa
Jon has worked within the African aviation industry for 8 years. In 2015, Jon created AviaDev, a content platform and annual route planning conference for Africa. It is now established as the largest event of its kind on the continent having been held in Kigali 2016 and 2017 and then Cape Town in 2018 and 2019.

Additionally, Jon established AviaDev Insight Africa, the only podcast dedicated to African aviation in 2018 and this boasts an audience in over 160 countries globally and over 35,000 listeners.

Jon became a key person of influence within the market by delivering content and insight using digital means during the Coronavirus pandemic. This includes delivering 30 podcasts, over 20 webinars and Africa’s first virtual event for Aviation, Tourism and Hospitality, Africa Tomorrow.
AviaDev Consult powered by MIDAS aviation was created in 2019 to offer high quality and affordable consultancy to the African aviation industry.
Jon is passionate about empowering the next generation of aviators, creating Aviators Africa Academy in 2018, which has delivered outreach events across the continent. He was also appointed a Global Ambassador for Gorilla Conservation for his fundraising efforts which include climbing the three largest mountains in the UK in a single weekend wearing a gorilla suit.

Mr. Romain Ekoto
Mr. Romain Ekoto
Chief Aviation Officer at African Development Bank Group
Romain Ekoto is an aviation professional with more than 19 years of experience. As Chief Aviation Officer of the African Development Bank, he is responsible for developing and executing the Bank’s framework to support the aviation Sector in Africa. The Bank’s intent is to sustain practical efforts by countries, regional organisations and African aviation sector companies to overcome their key challenges, particularly in critical situations such as the current COVID-19 crisis, towards a comprehensive transformation and sustainability of the sector.
Before joining the Bank, Romain worked at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), a UN Specialized Agency, where he ran the technical assistance and air transport programs for the Western and Central African Region. With civil aviation project management as his core skill, he successfully led transformation projects in several National Civil Aviation Authorities and Regional Safety Oversight Organizations and promoted ICAO Air Transport policies throughout the region including on the liberalization of the market and taxation and charges issues.
Beginning his career, Romain worked for Air France where he managed several projects on the digitalization of tools for the airline crew. He graduated from the French Civil Aviation University (ENAC) with an Engineering degree.
Lufthansa Consulting_Matthias Kern_20x30
Mr. Mathias Kern
Associate Partner & Head of Solution Group Organization and Strategy- Lufthansa Consulting
Matthias Kern is an Associate Partner at Lufthansa Consulting based in Frankfurt, a leading aviation management consultancy with over 40 years of experience in over 3.500 projects worldwide. He has worked in the consulting business for over 10 years specializing in reorganization, transformation and strategy. Prior to joining Lufthansa Consulting, he worked for The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) across different industries and global clients.
At Lufthansa Consulting, Matthias heads the Solution Group Organization and Strategy advising clients on restructuring, transformation and start-up of airlines. Besides his work for airlines across the globe, Matthias is currently engaged within the transformation program of the Lufthansa Group.
A national of Germany, he holds a Masters Degree in Management from the London Business School and a Bachelors in General Management – Business Law from the European Business School in Oestrich-Winkel, Germany.
Maureen Kahonge
Ms. Maureen Kahonge
Senior Manager Business Development & Communications, African Airlines Association
Mr. James Geldenhuys
Mr. James Geldenhuys
Head Aircraft Finance - Nedbank
James Geldenhuys, Head of Nedbank CIB’s Aircraft Finance business, has 36 years’ experience in South African banking. He spent the past 28 years in structured finance and has held several senior banking positions. He has broad experience in international tax structured finance and transactions in the oil industry across Africa.

Since 2001, James has had a special interest in aircraft leasing and, drawing on his considerable expertise in the airline industry, established Nedbank’s specialist Aircraft Finance division in 2008. He also served as a non-executive director on the board of a regional airline for five years, which provided him with the relevant insight to the inner workings of an airline. As such, James is well placed to comment on issues facing the airline industry.

James holds a BCom Honours (Investment Management), MCom (Business Management) and a H.Dip (Tax) from the University of Johannesburg, as well as a Global Executive Development Program from Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS). He lives in Johannesburg and is married with three sons.

Jamie Partington
Mr. Jamie Partington
IMS Regional Director - Middle East & Africa – Collins Aerospace
Jamie Partington leads Collins Aerospace's Information Management Services Business across Africa and the Middle East. For over a decade, Jamie has dedicated himself to supporting African Airlines, by understanding their unique operational requirements and ensuring that Collins Aerospace develops solutions that will enable them to better serve their stakeholders and passengers. Jamie's enthusiasm for building lasting relationships across the region coupled with his expert knowledge of Integrated Digital Solutions gives him the sense of purpose needed to ensure that African Airlines are building back better.
Christophe Ritter
Mr. Christophe Ritter
Managing Partner - Predictive Mobility
Christophe is the founder and CEO of Predictive Mobility and co-founder of Milanamos both companies being dedicated to implement the Agile Marketing principles Network Planning, Revenue Management and Commercial Development. Christophe has twenty years of experience in the aviation industry working for large international airlines (Air France, Alitalia, or TAM) and for the world leading aviation IT and consulting firm, before launching his new ventures. Christophe has an international experience in marketing planning during his consulting project, working with major airlines such as Delta Air Lines, Etihad, Airbus, Aeroflot, Avianca, JAL, or EgyptAir.
Christophe started its career in aviation working in pricing and revenue management where he implemented a new DSS and designed support applications and processes. He later worked on Network Planning and his consulting practices at Sabre led him to manage airline restructurings and turnarounds, start-up carriers, network and route development, commercial optimization, and large system implementation projects.
Christophe has completed his academic studies in Econometrics with a thesis on “Systemic Models of Economic Disorganization” at the University of Aix-en-Provence and he has also graduated from the IAE Business School with a specialization on Marketing. Christophe is an invited contributor to the Air Business Academy and Hautes Etudes Commerciales business schools’ MBA programs.
Gaoussou Konate
Mr. Gaoussou Konate
Technical and Operations Director ,African Airlines Association
Mr. KONATE joined AFRAA just after he completed a nine-month consultancy contract with the African Development Bank and contributed to the development of the Bank Framework and Guidelines to Support the Aviation Sector in the Region. He brings a vast experience comprising both air transport and civil aviation. His 35-year-corporate experience covered: International Civil Organisation (ICAO), he served as Deputy Regional Director of the Western and Central; for 8 years, he serviced IATA Regional Office for Africa and Indian Ocean (AFI) where he joined as Manager Safety and became Regional Director Safety, Operations, and Infrastructure; as AFRAA Technical Director, he fostered cooperation among African air carriers for 11 years. Before AFRAA, he worked at Air Afrique for just over a decade.

Mr. KONATE graduated as a Mechanical Engineer in 1979 at the “Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Lyon,” in France.

Mr. Sanjeev Gadhia
Mr. Sanjeev Gadhia
CEO - Astral Aviation
Sanjeev S Gadhia is the Founder and CEO of Astral Aviation Ltd which is a dedicated all- cargo airline based in Nairobi, Kenya and operates a fleet of seven cargo aircrafts into Europe and within Africa.

Operating one of the most successful airlines in Africa for 18 years, Sanjeev is responsible for the overall management, network planning and fleet acquisition for Astral Aviation, along with its Pan African expansion strategy, which entails two new cargo hubs in West and Southern Africa, including diversification into Logistics, Airport Infrastructure, Executive Jets and Unmanned Cargo Aircrafts.

Sanjeev is rated as a “New Generation Leader for Africa” by the prestigious African Leadership Network, while Astral has been rated as the best all-cargo carrier in Africa in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2018. In 2017, Astral Aerial (UAV subsidiary of Astral Aviation) won the prestigious IATA Cargo Innovation Award for its UTM (UAV Traffic Management) innovation for Africa.

In September 2016, Sanjeev was appointed Vice Chairman of AFRAA’s (African Airlines Association) Cargo Committee based on his extensive experience in the aircargo sector in Africa. In October 2017, Sanjeev became the first Director from Africa to sit on TIACA (The International Air Cargo Association)

A banker by profession, Sanjeev has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the Schiller International University in London, in addition to being a member of EO Kenya (Entrepreneurs Organization) and YPO (Young Professional’s Organization) Africa Great Lakes.

Sanjeev is a Kenyan citizen and is married with 2 children.

William Cavendish
Mr. William Cavendish
Principal - Global Business Development - Accelya
William (Bill) Cavendish joined Accelya in the role of Principal - Global Business Development. Bill is responsible for building and managing commercial relationships with airline partners by aligning their retailing-led growth requirements with Accelya’s portfolio of next-generation solutions. He also oversees Accelya’s strategy development for NDC adoption and consult with airlines to drive revenues and increase distribution control during this critical phase of industry recovery.
A seasoned executive with extensive business transformation experience and deep airline domain knowledge, Bill joins Accelya from Emirates. In his role as Vice President, Distribution Strategy at Emirates, he was responsible for defining, setting, and executing the airline’s commercial distribution strategy. He also developed and deployed the “Emirates Gateway,” the airline’s successful NDC platform, a driver of significant NDC-enabled revenue streams.
Prior to Emirates, Bill held a number of leadership roles at aviation technology companies, global consulting firms, and major corporate travel management organisations. A member of the U.K. Institute of Business Consultants, Bill was educated at Stowe School and went on to read Political Science at the University of Calgary.
Nowel Ngala2
Mr. Nowel Ngala
Commercial and Ground Operations Director, The Pan African Airlines
Nowel is a strong believer of the African renaissance, an experienced Senior Airlines Executive and Jurist with extensive international exposure and proven commercial and leadership capabilities for the past 16 years.

He currently works for ASKY, The Pan African Airlines as Director - Commercial and Ground Operations for the past 09 years and has recently been elected as Chairman of the Aero-Political Committee of AFRAA.

He has several articles published on key topics of discussion relating to the air transport industry in Africa.

James Bosse
Mr. James Bosse
Director Sales, De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited

James is the Sales Director, Africa for the De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited, a position he has held since October 2019.

A highly accomplished aviation and finance professional, James has extensive global experience in aviation finance, leasing and banking.

James previously worked with GECAS – the aircraft finance and leasing subsidiary of GE Capital, a role he held from 2011 – 2019. During this time, he led the Company’s Sales and Marketing efforts across sub Saharan Africa, working with various commercial airlines to structure innovative aircraft financing and leasing solutions.

James has also held various roles of increasing responsibility in banking within Standard Chartered Bank that saw him work in Africa, the United States and the Middle East.

James is an alumnus of the United States International University (USIU) Africa in Nairobi, where he earned a BSc. in International Business Administration in 1999, and the University of Liverpool, where he earned his MBA in 2000.