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From The Chair various charities including the Chelsea Pensioners Appeal, the Earl Haig Fund and the The Bahrain Mother and Child Welfare Society.

Khalid Al-Zayani OBE Chairman Welcome to the Spring edition of the BBBF magazine. It’s been several months since our last magazine and all of our various Special Interest Groups have been very active. I would like to thank everyone who organised the numerous events, our sponsors and our members who support the BBBF with enthusiasm throughout the year. A special mention must be given to both HSBC and Standard Chartered Bank who continue to be a great source of financial support and generous encouragement. Their unwavering support allows us the financial security to increase the number and quality of events that we organise for your benefit and enjoyment. We are also pleased to see Etihad back on board for their second year as a Sponsor. The annual Poppy Ball organised jointly with the BBA in November was once again a tremendous success and featured a performance by the Manama Singers. Three Chelsea Pensioners, 72-yearold retired Warrant Officer (Class Two) Patrick Teegan, 71-year-old retired Corporal Peter John Caiger and 70-year-old retired trooper Samuel Cameron joined us in Bahrain to mark the occasion. Held at The Crowne Plaza Hotel, proceeds from the raffle have been given to

We also had a very enjoyable Christmas lunch when we were joined by HMA Iain Lindsay who updated us with his annual review of business activity for last year and gave us his thoughts for the business year that lies ahead of us in 2015. Since the last publication we have had several Trade Mission visitors from the UK including one of the largest missions seen in Bahrain with a focus on education. The clear message from senior Bahrainis during that visit was that they want to see more British companies winning business in the Kingdom. One company that has won business is clearly visible on the streets of Bahrain and that is National Express who together with the AMA Group have put the new red buses on the streets. We congratulate the team at The British Embassy who helped to make that happen. One of the recent highlights of our events programme was having the Information Affairs Minister Isa Al Hammadi join us for the networking lunch

Registration number ISSN 1985-9929

in January. The Minister paid tribute to robust ties shared by Bahrain and Britain, saying that trade and investment links were steadily growing and he was looking forward to additional cooperation in various sectors. In particular, the minister said the enhancement of the media sector would benefit both Bahrain and its partners who are looking to do business in the kingdom. He added that the ministry was looking forward to using British expertise to develop the sector. With the Bahrain Grand Prix now only a few short weeks away the BIC continues to gear up for the second night race. The circuit is hoping to surpass last years success and the race weekend will once again provide a global focal opportunity to showcase the numerous benefits of doing business in Bahrain and using the island as a “business friendly” springboard to tap other GCC markets. We hope that you enjoy this edition of Forum and the Committee look forward to seeing you, and your guests, at forthcoming BBBF events. Kind regards Khalid Al-Zayani

BBBF Tel: +973 1781 3488, Fax: +973 1781 3489, Email: bbbforum@batelco.com.bh Bahrain British Business Forum, P. O. Box 10051, Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain

Contents The 2013-2015 Executive Committee........2 Welcome to New Members..................3 Member Benefits ..............4 Why join the BBBF? .........5 Advertiser Index................6 Diary Dates.......................6 From Her Majesty’s Ambassador.....................7 Embassy News.................8 SIG Update ...................10 SIG Construction ............11 SIG Security ..................12 SIG event photos............16 Top 10 Tips or website owners ..........18 Financial News ...............20 Feature Article Insurance policies to safeguard business.........22 Motoring News ...............26 F-Pace available 2016 ....32 Construction Sector .......36 Education Sector............38 Travel News....................42 News from the EP ..........44 Hotel & Leisure News .....46 Bahrain News .................50 Bahrain Animal Rescue Centre................59 And Finally......................60 Cover Image: Members & Guests at the February BBBF Networking lunch held at the Muharraq Ballrom in the Diplomat Radisson Blu. Centre image shows Marwa Abbas Almosawi presenting the winners of the Etihad draw, Ollie Hunt & Jamal Fakhro with their tickets. More images of lunches on page 55. Forum

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The 2013-15 BBBF Executive Committee

Chairman Khalid Al Zayani OBE

Acting Deputy Chair Paula Boast Tel: 3319 4445

Hon-Secretary Jill Boggiss Mob: 3604 4100

Treasurer Jonathan Trafankowski Mob: 3914 8599

Embassy Representative Debbie Dixon Mob: 3947 4208

Member Julia Atherton-Dandy Mob: 3966 0598

Member Nasser Al Arayedh Tel: 1727 2575

Member Mazen Alumran Tel: 1771 5555

Member Adel Fakhro Tel: 1727 5000

Member Rick Hopper Tel: 3979 1090

Executive Manager Dena Wales Tel: 3969 6191

This edition of the BBBF Forum magazine was compiled by Andrew Mead at Mead Management Services Ltd. email: andrew@sbtd.co.uk UK Mob: 0044 7940 559 925 Bahrain Mobile: 00973 3638 7595 KSA Mob: 00966 506 271 151 If you would like to contribute to a future edition please telephone or send an email to info@sbtd.co.uk A full page advert is charged at BD330. A half page advert at BD200, A quarter page advert at BD110 A small panel at BD55 Assistance with Advert design is available if required Please note: The BBBF nor its agents do not warrant the services of any of the individual or corporate members of the BBBF. The views and opinions expressed by independent contributors must not be regarded as those of the BBBF or its agents. Publication of any article or advertisement does not imply any endorsement of the views, products or services described therein.

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The BBBF Directory The 2015 printed edition of the BBBF Directory is now available. Keep your information up-to-date by checking the data on the BBBF Website at www.bbbforum.org, follow the link to the Directory and use the Text or Picture Search facility to find your entry.


Welcome to New Members Fahad Al Saad Al Saad Ventures Company WLL Managing Director Tel: 7767-2222 Mob: 3394-2294 fahad@alsaadventures.com

Jan Ifcic InterContinental Regency Bahrain General Manager Tel: 1722-7777 Fax: 1720-8367 jan.ifcic@ihg.com

Mahmood Al Soufi Garmco Chairman Tel: 1773-1000 Mob: 3962-2111 mahmood.alsoufi@garmco.com

Gary A. Laing Mott MacDonald General Manager, Bahrain Tel: 1758-6350 Fax: 1791-0087 gary.laing@mottmac.com

Buthaina Amin Trowers & Hamlins Senior Associate Tel: 1751-5600 Mob: 3930-0577 bamin@trowers.com

Sohail Nawaz Primedia International CEO Tel: 1749-0000 Mob: 3844-4027 sohailnawaz@primediaintl.com

Munira Fahoum Prime Instant Offices & Business Centre Managing Director Tel: 1757-0400 Mob: 3991-7333 munira@primeinstantoffices.com

Nicole Phillips PineBridge Investments Middle East B.S.C Š Senior Vice President Tel: 1756-0227 Mob: 3696-2992 nicole.phillips@pinebridge.com

Faezeh Faiz Fakhroo Bahrain International Circuit Marketing Manager Tel: 1745-1070 Mob: 3998-2707 f.faiz@bic.com.bh

Emyr Rowlands Mott MacDonald Associate Tel: 1758-6350 Mob: 3622 2460 emyr.rowlands@mottmac.com

Tom Hallett BAE Systems Business Development Manager, Bahrain Tel: 1723-3688 Mob: 3400-6915 thomas.hallett@baesystems.com

Stuart Stancombe Crowne Plaza Hotel Food & Beverage Manager Tel: 1753-1122 Mob: 3840-5184 stuart.stancombe@ihg.com Forum

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Benefits for BBBF Members

Benefits for all our members may be obtained on production of their Membership card at the concerned outlet. We would like to hear your feedback concerning these discounts. Please do not hesitate to offer your services to our members by contacting the BBBF office. If any member has any difficulty obtaining a discount, please contact the BBBF office so we can rectify the situation. AXA Insurance 10% discounts to members on personal lines insurances. (excluding medical) Terms & Conditions Apply. Contact: Stephen Wagstaff Tel: 1758 8222 Email: stephen.wagstaff@axa-gulf.com Bahrain Kuwait Insurance Company (BKIC) Special schemes have been arranged with BKIC for BBBF members for the following classes of insurance: House & Contents, Domestic Servants & Motor Insurance. Special terms are available on production of your membership card. Bateel BBBF Members can enjoy 10% Discount when presenting their Membership Card, Complimentary collection for refilling, Complimentary delivery. Development Managers readily available for a courtesy meeting at your location. Email: m.shareef@almoayedgeneral.com Contact: Mahboob Shareef Mobile: 3964 4222 BIZNET BBBF female members can join BIZNET for a 25% reduction in the fees (BD 75 for 9 events instead of BD 100). This also includes complementary entrance to mixed events. A member discount cad is also provided. BBBF male members are welcome to attend mixed events for BD10 per session. BMC BBBF members and Organisations are eligible to a 20% discount on Team/Executive Coaching and Association for Coaching International Coach Training as well as 10% discount on other training, consulting and psychometric profiling. Contact:- Dr. Clare Beckett-McInroy (Managing Director & Master Coach), Mobile:- +973 38442727, Email:- clare@beckett-mcinroy or office@beckett-mcinroy.com British Airways BA is offering BBBF members a 10% discount on published fares from Bahrain to UK, Europe, and North America in Club World business class, World Traveller Plus premium economy class and World Traveller economy class. The discount rate is applicable to round or one-way trip tickets originating from Bahrain. This discount is not applicable on taxes, fees and surcharges.To book please login at www.ba.com/bbbf. Charm Ladies Beauty Salon & Spa - 15% discount offered to BBBF Lady members and to BBBF male members wives on all their packages and products (valid until 28th February 2016). To avail this offer members must show their BBBF membership card. For more details and to see their brochure visit their Website at www.charmbahrain.com or telephone +973 1310 8598 Craig Consultants 10% discount for members on 1-on-1 Executive Coaching, Contact: Kevin Craig Tel: 36199980 Email: kevin@craigconsultants.com DHL 25% discount from the cash tariff for any personal shipments being sent from Bahrain to anywhere in the world available on production of your membership card. DHL Customer Service Tel: 1736 4100 www.dhl.com.bh

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Expat Angels 10% discount on all packages and services. Contact: info@expatangelsbahrain.com

Tel: 3832-0439

Gulf Computer Services (GCS) IT Health Check. GCS have offered BBBF Members a site survey and assessment of all their computer hardware, software and systems. This usually chargeable service is offered Free of Charge to BBBF Members. To take advantage of this unique offer contact Barrie Jones at barrie.jones@gulfcomputerservices.com Offer valid until Dec 31st 2013. Hasan Mansouri 10% discount to members at Mansouri Mansions Hotel and Country Club. Contact: Karim Mansouri Tel: 1772 8144 Email: karim@karimmansouri.com MANDEVCO International 10% discount for the Experiential Team & Leader Programme and all Corporate training, offsites & conferences delivered during May til Septmber 2014. Contact: Graham Nugent Tel: 00973 7711 8188 Email: graham.nugent@ MANDEV.co Hotel Services (NHSC) 5% on beers, 15% on wines and spirits with the exception of products already on special offer. Contact: Ian Bricklebank Tel: 1781-5929 Email: nhsc1234@batelco.com.bh Nexus Financial Services 10% premium discount to members on personal lines insurances.(e.g. Motor, Medical, Travel and Home Contents etc). Premium Allocation Benefits for International Retirement and University Education Funding Plans. plus Free Monthly Premium Benefits for Life Assurance and Critical Illness Policies. Terms & Conditions Apply. Contact: Emanuel Lantzos Tel: 1753 1766 / 1753 1703 Email: Emanuel.lantzos@nexusadvice.com or info.bahrain@nexusadvice.com Protection Insurance Service offers BBBF members special rates on their personal insurance (motor, home, travel and any other insurance cover). Members will just call to select the cover type, share the credit card number and we will deliver the policy documents to his / her office. Please call 3904-3446 or 3645-4282 Ritz-Carlton, Doha Stay for minimum 2 nights at the club level of The Ritz-Carlton, Doha and get a Food & Beverages credit of USD 50/day. 15% savings for all treatments at The Ritz-Carlton Spa Contact: Hanny Gunawan, Director PR, Tel: +974 4484 8303, email: hanny.gunawan@ritzcarlton.com Royal Over-Seas League Reduced rates for BBBF members at ROSL clubhouses in London and Edinburgh Email: fvanicek@rosl.org.uk Tel: 0044 20 7408 0214 Fax: 0044 20 7499 6738 Servcorp Business Package First month FREE on any Servcorp Virtual Office package. For details contact: Danni Hunneyball, Assistant Manager Tel: 1750 3000 email: danni.hunneyball@servcorp.me Web: www.servcorp.bh


Why Join The BBBF?

BAHRAIN The Pearl of the Gulf has had a long standing relationship with Britain and is still a major trading partner.

Membership directories are distributed to members of visiting Trade Missions and are available through the Embassy and business centres in five star hotels.

BRITISH Trade with Bahrain is now subject to significant competition in this era of globalisation particularly from countries in Europe and from the USA.

Simply click on “Sign Up” on our website www.bbbforum.org complete the application form and click submit. Sounds simple, it is, it must be worth it.

BUSINESS between Bahrain and Britain must be promoted in order for Britain to maintain its dominant position. The BBBF has been formed to help in whatever way it can to do this and through its close cooperation with the British Embassy seeks to promote exchange of trade and good relations between Bahrain and Britain. FORUM Is defined in the Collins English Dictionary as, “an assembly or meeting to discuss topics of public concern”. The BBBF provides through its monthly meetings a platform for networking amongst its members and the exchange and dissemination of useful business leads and opportunities. In addition, in return for a modest subscription, members receive the benefit of inclusion in an annual directory describing the products and services they have to offer and a listing on the BBBF website again with a description of activities, contact numbers and useful links.

BBBF Membership Application Please complete the membership form and send it to: BBBF Executive Office, Fax: (00973) 1781 3489, or Email: bbbfmemberships@batelco.com.bh. For further information call (00973) 1781 3488, Web site: www.bbbforum.org

Cost of membership (2014) Individual Membership: BD 100 per annum, with an additional BD 40 once-only registration fee. Corporate Membership: BD 400 per annum (up to 5 individuals) plus BD 40 for each applicant up to a maximum of 10, with an additional BD 100 once-only registration fee. Corporate Sponsorships Three levels of sponsorship are available: Platinum: BD 3500 each year for three years Gold: BD 3500 for one year Silver: BD 1750 for one year Sponsor packages include a variety of advertisement opportunities in the Membership Directory, the Forum magazine, the BBBF website and at the regular lunch meetings. Full details are available on request.

Corporate Membership please complete separate form for each applicant

Individual Membership

Company Name

Website address of business (if applicable)

Title and full name (Surname first)

Describe how you / your company contribute to substantial business interests in Bahrain (Maximum 150 words)

Position in business Nationality

Date of Birth

CPR Number Address of business (P.O.Box & Town) Business telephone

Facsimile

Home telephone

Mobile

E-mail address

I agree to abide by the BBBF Constitution & Internal regulations. Applicants Signature

Please note that the granting of individual or corporate membership is subject to BBBF Committee approval.

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Our thanks to all the advertisers in this edition of Forum. Without their support, this issue would not have been possible. Please give them yours. 2 Connect ........................................ Inside Back Cover ACE ................................................................. page 21

Diary Dates

Al Jazira Supermarket ..................................... page 53

Wednesday March 25th SIG Banking & Finance Venue: Crowne Plaza Conference Centre Registration: 6.00pm

Almoayed Wilelmsen Ltd................................... page 8 Audi .......................................................... pages 28-29 AXA Insurance ............................. Outside Back Cover BFC ................................................................. page 20 BIC ........................................................Centre Spread Beckett McInroy Consultancy (BMC) .............. page 50 Budget Car & Van Rental ............................... page 33 Crown Relocations .......................................... page 41 Dipomat Radisson Blu..................................... page 47 Etihad .............................................................. page 43 Euromotors Jaguar.......................................... page 27 G4S ................................................................. page 11 Gulf Agency Co ............................................... page 37 HSBC .............................................................. page 23 Mansouri Mansions ......................................... page 55 Nexus ..............................................Inside Front Cover Streetlight Photography................................... page 38 The Robin Hill Hotel ........................................ page 56 Trafco .............................................................. page 19 Viva ................................................................. page 45 To advertise in a future edition of the BBBForum magazine please contact the compiler, Andrew Mead of MMSL on andrew@sbtd.co.uk or call Caroline Wilkie on 3671-8115

British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond meets with His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa on the sidelines of the Egypt Economic Development conference in Sharm Al Sheikh 6

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Monday March 30th AGM Venue: Crowne Plaza Conference Centre Registration: 12 noon Wednesday April 8th BBBF Curry night Venue: The British Embassy Members only event - Fully Booked Wednesday May 20th Business Networking Lunch Venue: tba Registration: 12 noon Friday June 12th BBBF Golf event Venue: Riffa Tuesday June 16th Business Networking Lunch Venue: tba Registration: 12 noon July date TBA Ramadan Quiz Night Events in the pipeline Please note - dates and timings are subject to change. Visit the BBBF website www.bbbforum.org and check the calendar for updated details on the above and other events/ meetings being held.

Left to right: Debbie & Russ Dixon with Bridget & HMA Iain Lindsay OBE at last years QueenÂ’s Birthday party celebrations held in the residence gardens.


From Her Majesty's Ambassador and RAF flights. As Mr Hammond commented to me, it would not have been nearly as straightforward anywhere elsewhere in the region. I have just said farewell to Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond after he overnighted in Bahrain en route from Delhi to Sharm El Sheikh, where a major Egyptian investment conference was taking place. ‘So what?’ you may say. Well, there were a couple of aspects to his visit which, respectively, underline the extraordinary strength of the bilateral relationship and reinforce one of Bahrain’s USPs. First, this was Mr Hammond’s fourth visit to Bahrain in two and a half years and his second in the space of just a few months. But, his sixth meeting with King Hamad in that same period did not happen here. No, they met in Sharm for the simple reason that King Hamad had to leave Bahrain before Mr Hammond arrived. But it is telling, and indicative of the importance of the bilateral relationship, that both the King and Mr Hammond were keen to meet. And it is good news for you, the members of the BBBF, given the continuing strong messages from the Bahraini authorities that they wish to see more British companies coming into the market and winning business. The second aspect relates to the comparative ease of doing business here. In this case, travelling through Bahrain connecting commercial

Going to back to ‘winning business’, we now have the final figures for UK exports of goods to Bahrain in 2014, one of the measures of how well British companies are doing here. And the good news is that the value of our exports was up 7% compared with 2013. Some people are asking whether, with the fall in the oil price, we will see continued growth in bilateral business and trade relations. I don’t see why not so long as the Bahraini authorities tackle their budgetary problems without cutting into investment, which is critical not just for Bahrain’s competitiveness but also the economic and social reform which King Hamad and Crown Prince Salman wish to see. We will know in the next couple of months whether the government’s focus on targeting generous subsidies to make up for the drop in income due to the fall in the oil price leaves major investment projects intact. I am delighted that British companies want to work closely with Bahrain on oil and gas, new housing, airport expansion and transport infrastructure. Those living in Bahrain can’t have missed one of the UK’s recent commercial successes: the new red buses which

arrived on the streets in February. It’s really encouraging to see such tangible results from a joint venture between National Express and the AMA Group, who formed Bahrain Public Transport Company, which now holds the concession for the public bus system. Looking ahead, we are planning another GREAT event, on Advanced Engineering, on the morning of 19 April, the day of the Formula One Grand Prix, at the Ritz Carlton. I am most grateful to the Crown Prince for agreeing to be Patron of the event and to the Economic Development Bureau for their support. We are in the final stages of putting the event together but it promises to be a superb event. Since I last wrote in this magazine my successor, Simon Martin, has been announced. I will leave after Ramadan and he will arrive later in the summer. While this is not a valedictory despatch (if the Editor can put up with me one last time), I do want to highlight that Simon does bring commercial experience with him, having headed up the preUKTI commercial team in Hungary in the late 90s. Also, he has just finished working for HRH The Prince of Wales, in which capacity he paid a brief visit to Bahrain a year ago. All of you will well understand the importance of Royal relations in the overall

bilateral relationship, so his experience from Clarence House will be of huge benefit. And to finish, we will shortly be saying a sad farewell to the dynamic duo of Russ and Debbie Dixon. Russ has done a magnificent job of the day-to-day running of the Embassy as well as providing leadership in key areas such as reform support, now a major area of work for us and the bilateral relationship, and our major campaigns. Debbie has similarly done a superb job, leading the UKTI team to beat stretching targets and, in doing so, helping British companies to win good business in Bahrain. Together, they form a great team, which seems appropriate given that they were the brains behind last year’s highly successful GREAT British Week and are running our GREAT F1 event. We wish them well as they spend some time in the UK preparing for the hardship posting known as Muscat, where Russ will be an admirable Deputy Ambassador! Thank you both for all that you’ve done here. Iain Lindsay OBE HM Ambassador Forum

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Embassy News

World Islamic Banking Conference (WIBC)

Above: HMA with fellow panellists and Baroness Warsi at WIBC 2014 HMA Iain Lindsay opened the annual UK Interface Panel Session at WIBC 2014 where the latest developments on Islamic finance in the UK were discussed. The UK’s notable contributions to the development of Islamic finance were highlighted by HMA, including the launch of the first Islamic Insurance Underwriting Agency, Cobalt Underwriting; the creation of an Islamic Index at the London Stock Exchange; and the UK becoming the first country outside the Islamic world to issue a sovereign sukuk in June 2014. Baroness Warsi from the House of Lords also attended the session and gave a closing statement.

Museums Association conference, Wales Millennium Centre Cardiff, October 2014

UKTI escorted Rashad Faraj, Acting Director of Museums at the Ministry of Culture on a two day visit to Cardiff to discuss Bahrain’s cultural influence across the Gulf. In a break-out slot given to UKTI by the Museums Association who organised the conference, Rashad, together with speakers from Brazil and Argentina spoke of the importance of culture and the potential for UK involvement in foreign markets.

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Explore Export, November 2014

UKTI represented Bahrain in the Explore Export roadshow which saw over 100 UKTI officers from around the world take part in one-to-one business meetings in the UK. UKTI Bahrain met a total of 60 companies representing a wide range of sectors including food, drink, education, construction, sports and financial services among others. The tour began in Belfast, Northern Ireland and then moved on to Edinburgh, Newcastle, Harrogate, and finally the East Midlands.

Arab Health and BETT, January 2015

In January, UKTI officer Yara Tawfeeq attended several trade shows; the world’s second largest exhibition for medical technology industry, Arab Health in Dubai and the leading learning technology event, BETT Show in London. During these shows, a series of 1-2-1 meetings took place with UK companies who were interested in doing business in Bahrain. For more information, please contact yara.tawfeeq@fco.gov.uk


Education trade mission, December 2014

Above: Training Gateway Mission delegates, during their visit to Bahrain, December 2014 In December, UKTI in collaboration with the Training Gateway brought in a delegation of UK-based providers of education and corporate training. The group comprised 20 universities, colleges and private training providers, which offered a wide range of services. The delegation had the opportunity to meet with several government bodies and private institutes, which gave them a taste of the Bahraini market. Given the success of this mission, the Training Gateway are planning on bringing another one to Bahrain later this year.

Stuart Turner event, November 2014

Above: Business Development Manager James Earl addressing the audience in the presence of HMA, Iain Lindsay British company Stuart Turner Ltd held an event at the British Embassy to promote their new range of water pumps. The event was well attended by key decision makers within the Bahraini government and others. Stuart TurnerÂ’s history dates back over a 100 years and their engineering solutions have accompanied Ernest Shackleton on his Antarctic Expedition as well as providing engines for the British Army in WWI and WWII. As a result of this event, a substantial order was placed for a range of water pump solutions.

Advanced Engineering and Innovation is GREAT!

The British Embassy will be holding a further GREAT Advanced Engineering and Innovation conference and exhibition on 19 April to build on the success of the GREAT British Week which was held in January 2013. The event will coincide with the Formula 1 Grand Prix and will be held on the morning of 19 April at the Ritz Carlton Hotel. The British Embassy is delighted to be working closely in partnership with the EDB and a select number of British companies to showcase some exciting advances in UK technology, particularly in the automotive and aerospace sectors.

Energy Trade Mission

UKTI in collaboration with EIC (Energy Industries Council) are hoping to bring a trade mission across in mid May. The details are still tentative, but it is the hope that having participated in a series of meetings with oil and gas companies in Saudi Arabia, the delegation will make its way to Bahrain in May. Forum

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SIG Update The special interest groups exist to meet the needs of members who want to learn more about specific sectors or about specialist areas of expertise in a more informal environment. The interest groups started in response to member interest and since our last publication have been very active with most groups having held at least two meetings. How you can get involved • Please support the meetings and come to the shared networking events we organise a couple of times a year. • If you have a strong interest in a business sector and have the passion, time and energy to start a group let me know. • If you have an idea for an event or want to get involved with the interest group organisation as a whole please get in touch with me.

Paula Boast SIG Chair •

•

If you are technical expert who would like to share your knowledge with the broader group get in touch with me or the appropriate SIG head. If you would like to be a venue for our meetings contact me or the BBBF office.

SIG - ICT The ICT Special Interest Group had a meeting on Tuesday 27th of January at the Crown Plaza Hotel.

Up to date contacts for the SIG Chairpersons may be found on the BBBF Website.

The subject was ICT – Friend or Foe: Practical Guidelines for mere mortals

SIG Sponsor

Ravi Jayasundera addressed the group and gave an excellent presentation on Internet and Mobile usage. There were a number of warnings and tips which applied to all of us, so it was a very useful presentation and discussion.

SIG - Banking & Finance

The next ICT meeting is planned for March 12 th when one of the ICT suppliers, Panduit, is going

Nicole Philips Joint SIG Chair The Banking & Finance SIG relaunched in November 2014 with a well-attended session on banking, credit and debit card fraud, presented by Bahrain Association of Banks (BAB) CEO Robert Ainey. Robert walked attendees through the history of banks and some cyber crime statistics, before getting into some nitty-gritty detail of the types of card fraud that can afflict banks and their clients, 10 Forum

Jonathan Trafankowski Joint SIG Chair including identity theft, counterfeiting and breaches of security standards. The presentation wrapped up with some useful videos on cyber crime and a Q&A. Q1 will hopefully include a presentation on Islamic Finance, and plans are also afoot for a joint session with the Legal SIG on UK Pensions. Interested members are welcome to suggest additional speakers and events

David Wales (BSc, MIEE) BBBF ICT SIG Chairman to give a presentation on their SmartZone solutions. Recently Yahoo received the Data Center Energy Efficiency award from The Green Grid using Panduit’s SmartZone solutions which resulted in a saving of 7.5 million kilowatts hours for Yahoo. With energy and cost savings being of particular importance in Bahrain, this should be well attended.


SIG - Construction

On February 12th we hosted a lunch time presentation at the Diplomat Radisson which covered the topic of Building Information Modelling (BIM) – The new Standard in Building Design. Our speakers were Loukas Mitsou of Mercury MENA and David Johnston of Norton Rose Fulbright. A few photos are on page 16. Loukas is a BIM expert with over 20 years of experience within various engineering sectors. He is also an expert developer and researcher of immersive technologies such as Augmented Reality, Interactive Intelligent Virtual Tours and Game Engine BIM integrations. He worked for and with major engineering firms in Europe and the USA and his engineering experience

includes Nuclear, Water & Wastewater and Industrial. Further, he is a member of the UK Government BIM Task Group, which oversees the HM Government BIM implementation initiative and strategy in the UK. Furthermore, he is a member of the Autodesk Council, the Autodesk and Bentley alpha and beta testing team, the BIM 4 Water UK Steering Committee, the BIM 2050 UK Steering Committee and he also sits at various UK based BIM Steering groups of large organizations and JVÂ’s such as Balfour Beatty, Capita Symonds and Eight2O. David is a projects and construction lawyer based in Bahrain. David has a broad range of experience advising on high value and high profile

construction and engineering projects, particularly in the infrastructure, transport, energy, water, waste and utilities sectors. He has also acted for lenders, governments, executive agencies, local authorities, employers, contractors, concessionaires and utilities.

Rick Hopper Joint Construction SIG Chair

The presentation, attended by roughly 40 members and guests, covered all aspects of Building Information Modelling. Topics included the challenges of set-up and uptake, benefits of collaborative integration in the modern world, future ability to design-procureproduce at the click of a button and wrapped around all of this, the legal impact of adopting the BIM. It was a very informative presentation that produced a thought provoking Q&A session.

Looking ahead to the next couple of months, the Construction SIG will be teaming up with the BBA in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia to host a social networking event, which aims to solidify the connection we all have with our big brother across the King Fahd Causeway! As always, we welcome any suggestions for speakers/ events, please feel free to contact myself or Paula Boast to see how best to fit them in.

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BBBF SIG Security

Is it me, and would you agree, that It certainly felt that the festive spirits, that saw out 2014 and then welcomed 2015, actually went on for quite some time with the unseasonal temperatures allowing for early BBQ’s Anthony Peter Palys MBE and live entertainment. As I type the month of March is upon us with both personal and business travel planning in full swing. Unfortunately the New Year has not brought much change, to the past year, with security related issues impacting on all areas of the economy and personal safety with daily horrific impressions on our TV screens from around the world.

The meeting was attended by a cross section of professionals from the community including Finance, Construction, Information Technology and Security to name but a few.

SIG Sponsor

Locally we are still having to deal with issues that impact on our day to day lives with the favorites still being in the areas of Personal Safety, Security Awareness, ATM skimming and Cyber Security. With this in mind we briefly revisit these areas with some updates that you may want to follow up on. Presentations

Bahrain Police Day

BBBF members and guests assembled at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on the 30th October to attend a SIG Security meeting which focused on the basics of Cybersecurity.

This very special event took place on the 14th December 2014 which showcased many facets of the Ministry of Interior and the great work that they do in protecting the people of Bahrain. The Ministry of Interior’s media centre followed up with a report that included statistics that are certainly worth a review and can be found at www.policemc.gov.bh

Guest speaker and Head of Cybersecurity Services at Atkins, Neil McElhinney discussed the basic principles business should adopt to maintain a robust Cybersecurity posture. Neil highlighted that term ‘Cybersecurity’ has created fear, uncertainty and doubt in the private sector, that security professionals have been working on the same problem under the term Information Security or Information Assurance for many years and that we shouldn’t forget the lessons we have learnt over that time. Neil discussed the importance of risk management, security awareness and maintaining a skilled workforce to build the foundations of a cybersecuity programme. These in combination with some basic security controls will mitigate the vast majority of the threats that businesses are exposed to. 12 Forum


trainers. The Spear’s 500 guide and the rise of the UHNWI

Bahrain based Le Beck International Ltd’s CEO, Anthony J Tesar becomes the first GCC individual to be recognised and honoured in the 2015 inaugural SPEAR’S 500 Guide for services provided to Ultra High Net Worth Individuals (UHNWI) Anthony J Tesar, is the only person based in the GCC to feature in the world’s first and ultimate Zagat-style guide for UHNWI, The SPEAR’S 500; not only walking away with top honours for specialist security and risk management consultancy services to UHNWI and their families, Anthony was also singled out as ‘Outstanding in his Field’.

The SPEAR’S 500 was launched to an eminent audience of London’s top bankers, lawyers and client advisers at the Spear’s Wealth Management Awards for 2015 in the prestigious setting of London’s Savoy Hotel on October 27th, 2014. The definitive Ultra High Net Worth Guide, the SPEAR’S 500 is the ultimate ‘Who’s Who’ for the UHNWI universe, ranking everyone from top private bankers and lawyers to art advisers and race horse

The SPEAR’S 500 is the brainchild of William Cash, the Managing Editor of Spear’s Magazine, widely considered to be the ultimate wealth management magazine for the banking fraternity and described recently in the media as ‘a European rival to Forbes magazine’ and ‘The New Yorker of finance’. Speaking at the Spear’s Wealth Management Awards – the ‘Oscars’ of the UHNWI world, Cash described The SPEAR’S 500 as the ‘world’s first definitive guide to top private client advisers, wealth managers, lawyers and service providers for High Net Worth Individuals and their families across all private client fields.’ According to James Ashton of The London Evening Standard, who featured the SPEAR’S 500 on 27 th October and who singled Anthony Tesar for an individual mention as one of the ‘top guns for hire’ …

“If you’re rich enough — £20m in assets will do nicely — from wine to yachts, horses to houses security to tax…these are the people to advise you” Anthony Tesar’s impressive CV in the field of counter terrorism and bomb disposal (he has defused over 2,000 IEDs/bombs), acting as a weapons inspector in Iraq for the United Nations, an adviser to US Government agencies post 9/11 and working for the US & UK governments in post-war Iraq doesn’t prepare you for his supremely calm, friendly but self-assured persona.

Being present or playing a major role in some of history’s most recent and dramatic events has given him the quiet authority that has been essential in gaining the trust of people and organisations that feel ever more vulnerable in an unpredictable world. He is quick to recognise how the perception of threat and risk make it difficult to be objective when it comes to the things people hold most dear, saying, ‘The mystic and diverse nature of security can sometimes be considered a ‘black art’, is always subjective and usually results in people seeing the risks in a lot better, or worse, light than they really are.’ He goes on to state ’unfortunately some security organisations can be shortsighted and exploit and capitalise on these vulnerabilities. Above all I try and educate people and organisations to the realities of risk and have consequently seen their attitudes being transformed and thus improving their sense of well-being and quality of life as a whole. This is ultimately very rewarding both personally and for Le Beck, from a business perspective.’ Identifying the Middle East as an area that he wanted to concentrate his expertise, Tesar also stands out from the crowd because he has come to know, understand and specialise in the complexities of the region and although Le Beck is an International organisation, he has based his business and made his home here. Forum 13


BBBF SIG Security - Personal awareness

International Travel

Hotels

In many parts of the world, air travel can be dangerous because of inadequate safety, maintenance and security procedures. This is especially true in the developing world, where maintenance regulations and procedures often are not strictly enforced. The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) prohibits U.S. carriers from flying into foreign airports that do not meet security and safety standards. Although this information is not readily available to the public, determined travelers could contact the FAA for a list and then avoid those airlines and airports that are considered substandard.

Fires are by no means the only threat a traveler may encounter during a hotel stay. Theft, kidnapping and other attacks present real threats to a traveler’s security, and measures to counter such threats abound.

The consular information sheets issued by the U.S. State Department also provide information about air travel safety. In addition, airport terminals, especially in the developing world, are notorious for criminal activity. When on the soft security side, unattended luggage can be stolen, and travelers can be victimized by pickpockets — especially when they are less vigilant after a long, exhausting intercontinental flight. At the destination airport, transportation can be arranged in advance to further minimize time spent on the soft side of security. For traveling executives, discretion should be employed in finding the local driver on the other end of a flight. A driver who holds up a sign bearing the executive’s name and company could tip off potential kidnappers or militants to the presence of a high-value target. Situational awareness and preparation are the most effective personal security measures a traveller can take to avoid this and other potential hazards. 14 Forum

When possible, a guest should choose a room location above the ground floor of a hotel, decreasing the room’s accessibility to criminals. Once inside the room, a guest should avoid opening doors to unannounced visitors, all of whom should be told to wait in the lobby so the front desk can verify their identity and reason for being there. Most important, a guest should ascertain whether someone has a reason for knocking on the door and asking for entry. When in doubt, do not open the door. A traveler should accept at least two keys when checking in to the hotel, and he or she should clarify to the front desk who is allowed to receive a key if one is lost or stolen. A traveler should also avoid returning their room key to the front desk — this allows people to easily see that a room is unoccupied. It should be kept in mind that a room safe is not safe, so a traveler is better served keeping important valuables on his or her person or at a secure location at the front desk. Security door locks should be used at night, and the door should never be propped open when going out — a thief needs only a small window of opportunity to enter a room. For the frugal traveler, an inexpensive wedge door lock (a rubber wedge placed between the floor and the bottom of the door) can also provide added security. Cleaning staff should not be allowed into the room in the absence of the guest,

and the “Do Not Disturb” sign should always be placed on the door handle to discourage anyone from entering the unoccupied room. Whether the hotel staff is complicit in criminal activity or not is irrelevant; a discerning traveler should minimize access to his or her hotel room at all times so that complicity is never a factor. In some countries, such as China, hotels are used to gather intelligence on guests. Using Internet services at a hotel can make a guest’s computer vulnerable. A traveler should assume telephone conversations on hotel lines are tapped and rooms are bugged for sound — and probably video. He or she should never leave a laptop, PDA or important documents in the room when away because the devices could be stolen, cloned or copied. Hotels — often erroneously — are seen as a secure location where the every need of a traveler is cared for, from turning down his or her bed to ensuring his or her personal safety. Indeed, hotels try very hard to make a guest feel at home; the onus of the guest is to remember that he or she is not. A false sense of security can lull a traveler into letting his or her guard down and abandoning the state of relaxed awareness needed to practice personal security when traveling.


ATM Fraud

devices will electronically record the data of every card entered and then return the card as normal, so victims have no idea that their bank account has been compromised. As for the PIN — that supposedly foolproof second layer of security — it’s recorded by cameras hidden above or beside the keyboard as the unsuspecting user taps it in.

This chilling investigation reveals there’s LOTS more to worry about when taking out your money

According to Tony Blake, fraud prevention officer at the Dedicated Cheque and Plastic Crime Unit (DCPCU), a special police unit working alongside industry fraud investigators, the scammers have two main ways of operating.

Use any one of the 69,000 cash machines in Britain and you run the risk of being duped by thieves who are after the cards themselves or simply the data they contain. They obtain this by surreptitiously fitting devices over the slot where the card is entered into the cash machine. Some devices will simply keep individual cards, which are then retrieved by the scammer the moment the card’s owner gives up waiting and walks away. Other more sophisticated

The first is known as ‘trapping’ — a technique that involves the card being retained or trapped within the machine. In its simplest form, a strip or sleeve of metal or plastic is placed into the ATM’s card slot. After that, the cards will go in, but not eject themselves. ‘So the person using the machine doesn’t have the card or their cash, and then the machine goes out of service because it hasn’t gone through the correct sequence,’ says Mr Blake. ‘The customer is stood

Is it EVER safe to use a cashpoint?

ASIS 6th Middle East Security Conference & Exhibition Colleagues from around the world joined us at the Events Centre of the InterContinental Festival City Hotel, Dubai, UAE, 15-17 February. The conference addressed a full spectrum of topics in security management such as: supply chain security, loss prevention, hotel security, intellectual property, maritime piracy, terrorism, executive protection, internal theft and fraud, competitive intelligence, brand protection, physical security, cyber security, investigations, due diligence and global business issues. More information can be found at https://aisonline.org

there at the out-of-service ATM with no money and no card — in the majority of cases they will walk away. ‘When the victim leaves, the thief returns to the machine and removes the device — an action that pulls out the retained card, too. They will also retrieve a hidden camera, which will have recorded the PIN being tapped into the keyboard. (Alternatively, they may simply have waited behind their victim, ‘shoulder surfing’ to see the number being entered.) The second, more sophisticated technique is known as ‘skimming’, whereby the magnetic stripe on the back of the card is ‘skimmed’ or read by a device fitted over the ‘throat’ of the machine — the place where the card is inserted. ‘The device will capture the card data from the magnetic stripe,’ says Mr Blake. ‘Potentially, it will be able to record the details contained on the stripe of hundreds of cards, one after another, and the customer will not know that their card details have been stolen.’ This device will again be used in conjunction with a hidden camera to record the PIN.

Upcoming Events: The 2015 Annual Regional MENA OSAC will be held . in Dubai from 3rd - 5th May We’re pleased to report that planning is well underway for our upcoming international event, to be held in Dubai from May 3 through 5, 2015. We’re crafting an agenda that features thought-provoking content on the myriad security challenges we all face in operating in this dynamic region. The rise of ISIL, the uncertainty of the Syrian civil war, the recent Houthi surge in Yemen – these are only some of the most recent security concerns and questions confronting us. The region remains a rich and rewarding environment for our operations, scholastic programmes, development efforts, and travelers, but we certainly need to maintain a comprehensive understanding of its risks. We look forward to discussing a variety of topics and offering multiple perspectives, including presentations from several Regional Security Officers posted in the region, and we hope you’re able to join us. Further information will be forwarded to members as and when known. www.osac.gov Tony Palys can be contacted at: tonypalys@lebeckinternational.com Forum 15


SIG Construction & Legal Notes on page 11 - A joint event held at The Diplomat Radisson Blu on Februay 12th 2015.

16 Forum


SIG - ICT

Imagine this: Your boss comes into your office with a brilliant suggestion. “Do more with less in the data centre. Specifically reduce CAPEX and OPEX whilst providing more headroom for the new cloud apps coming on line.” When you ask, if he has any suggestions how accomplish this. His response is, “Not my problem, you work it out”.

The SIG - ICT business lunch held at The Crowne Plaza on March 12th provided ideas on how to reduce data centre costs and maximise data centre resources. The speaker, John Ogle of Panduit Corporation has 20 years international experience working with enterprise IT customers whilst employed at Oracle, Veritas, Symantec & EMC and is now US Public Sector Manager in EMEA.

SIG - Organisational Effectiveness Does your website work hard enough for you? Are you attracting new clients easily and effectively? ... Just two of the questions posed at the OE meeting on 3rd March. Ollie Hunt of From6 delivered a workshop and summarised overleaf,

he’s outlined his top 10 tips for Search Engine Optimisation that every business owner/marketer should be aware of. Sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank the workshop was held at the Ramee Grand Hotel in Seef.

Forum 17


SIG - Organisational Effectiveness Ollie Hunt of From6 delivered a workshop and summarised below, he’s outlined his top 10 tips for Search Engine Optimisation that every business owner/marketer should be aware of.

Ollie’s Top 10 ‘SEO’ tips for Businesses/Website Owners In this article I will be covering; 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

How to audit your website Check Indexed Pages & Brand Results Pages Keyword Research Check your keyword ranking Review your content and Site Architecture Check your Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools 7. Review your Hosting Environment 8. Review your Mobile Experience 9. Check your sitemap.xml and robots.txt files 10. Review your Backlinks 1. Audit Your Website There are a number of free tools available online that you can submit your website to for SEO review, they will return back (almost instantly) a summative report outlining the areas of your website that need to be addressed from an SEO perspective. A lot information will be presented back to you, and I’m yet to see (or build) a website that comes back with a perfect response, there is always something that can be tweaked, so keep this in mind when you get your results. It might not be all doom and gloom, some things are minor and have little effect, and others can be hugely detrimental to your sites ranking ability.

Jill Boggiss BBBF OE SIG Chair 3. Do your Keyword Research What services/products are you offering to customers? Write these down as a list and check them using the ‘Google AdWords: Keyword Planner’ to see what the avg. search volumes (i.e. how many searches a month are conducted for the keyword) are and what other keyword ideas you may have missed. Using the tool, you can refine and add to your list of ‘keywords’ that you should be ranking within the search results for, we’re going to need this list for Tip 3.

Links https:adwords.google.com/KeywordPlanner - Sign Up to Google Adwords required 4. Check your Keyword Ranking Now you have your list of keywords that you ‘should’ be ranking for, you want to check to see where in the Google Search Results you are currently positioned for each of those keywords. To check this, you will need to install the ‘Rank Checker’ Firefox extension, once installed open the extension and configure the tool to check the local Google Search results (i.e. google.com.bh), add your keywords and website URL, then RUN the tool.

Links http://www.seoptimer.com - Nice and Simple http://www.site-analyzer.com - More detailed, and grades your website http://seositecheckup.com - Even more detailed, limits the number of tests you can do without signing up.

You will be presented with the ranking position for each keyword, you can use this to identify which keywords you are doing well with and which need some work.

2. Check your Indexed Pages & Brand Search Results Having done an audit of your website (and hopefully not had a heart attack!), you want to check how your website is being indexed by the search engines, to do this you need to run two test;

5. Review your Content & Site Architecture You will probably have found that your ranking position for those keywords that you should be ranking for are not as good as you were hoping, and the most likely reason for this is the lack of ‘keyword’ targeted content on your pages, and your site architecture.

Test 1: type ‘site: yourwebsiteaddress.com’ into google search, this will return back to you the pages of your website that are being ‘indexed’ by the search engine, you will want to compare this against the actual/real pages that you website has to ensure that all the pages that should be in the search engines index are being indexed appropriately. Test 2: Search for ‘Your Brand’ name in Google Search, you want to see your website homepage as the number 1 listing, and you also want to check what other information about your company Google is listing in the results, e.g. map location, Google Places listing (Now Google MyBusiness)

Links https://www.google.com/business/ - Set up your Google Business listing if you don’t currently have one 18 Forum

Links http://tools.seobook.com/firefox/rank-checker/

You want to check you have an effective site structure in place, with ‘follow-able’ links to pages with a good amount of content (400 minimum) talking about and mentioning the keyword that you are targeting. Use the keyword density tool from SEO Book to analyse the density of keywords in your pages.

Links http://tools.seobook.com/general/keyword-density/ 6. Check your Google Analytics & Google Webmaster Tools Both of these tools are free and every website should have them set up, so the first thing to check is; are they set up? Have you been given access to them by your web developer? If not, ask


your web developer to set up and provide you with access. Google Analytics will provide you with in-depth information about visitors to your website and how they got to your site, via search, social, direct or ad campaigns. You want to be reviewing your analytics on a monthly basis. Google Webmaster tool tells you what’s going on with your website from the search engines point of view, kind of like a website health check.

Links http://www.google.com/analytics - Google Analytics http://www.google.com/webmasters.tools - Google Webmaster Tools 7. Check your hosting It’s important to make sure that you are with a reputable hosting provider, and that you are on a server with other reputable websites, check to see what websites are hosted on your server, if they’re ‘dodgy’ you might want to think about moving to another hosting solution. Use the reverse IP tool listed below to check the sites that are hosted on your server. Check you website speed, your hosting plays a big part in the speed of your website (so does the design of it), use the

Links http://www.yougetsignal.com/tools/web-sites-on-web-server/Check to see what other websites are hosted on your server http://tools.pingdom.com/fpt/ - speed test your site

8. Review your mobile experience We’ve reached a point where more people are viewing websites on their mobile device than they are on their desktop/laptop, therefore you need to be providing visitors with a mobile optimised website. Google is also giving mobile friendly sites a ‘boost’ in the search results. Run a site: yourwebsite.com search on your mobile device to see if you’re site is tagged as ‘mobile friendly’, if it’s not then it’s time to create a mobile friendly site. 9. Check your sitemap.xml and robots.txt file A sitemap.xml file lists the pages that the search engines will find within your website, it also provides information that includes the ‘update’ frequency of pages. The search engine ‘bots’ will look for a sitemap.xml file and you need to check that you have one, it should be located at: yourwebsite.com/sitemap.xml A robots.txt file is an instruction file for the search engines, check that you have one at yourwebsite.com/robots.txt and check that it is not disallowing pages that it should be allowing. 10. Review your backlinks Backlinks are very important when it comes to search engine optimisation, you need to check your ‘backlink profile’ and the websites that are linking to your website, make sure they are relevant and from reputable websites. If you find some dodgy looking sites, then you can flag these in your Google Webmaster Tools.

Links http://www.backlinkwatch.com - Backlink checker

Forum 19


Financial News

AXA Gulf wins Bahrain Insurer of the Year honour for second consecutive year at MENA Insurance Awards In a significant boost to its leadership and market reputation across the Kingdom of Bahrain and beyond the Gulf and Middle East, AXA Gulf – one of the largest non-life international insurers in the Middle East – has won the Bahrain Insurer of the Year recognition for the second consecutive year at the MENA Insurance Awards 2015. The MENA Insurance Awards were given away on 25th of February, 2015 at Ritz-Carlton, DIFC Dubai. Diverse guests from across MENA region, including decision makers

20 Forum

from leading Arab and international insurance and reinsurance companies, brokers and representatives from regulatory agencies as well as banks attended the gala event.

The selection of AXA Gulf as the Bahrain Insurer of the Year recognized its commitment to customers, innovation and consistent delivery of high quality coverage, product diversity, technical expertise, leadership and a strong, persistent financial performance. Mr Stephen Wagstaff, AXA Bahrain country manager, said: “It is a great honour to win the prestigious Bahrain Insurer of the Year honour at the MENA Insurance Awards for the second consecutive year. This is a testimony to our company’s successful strategy and comprehensive product portfolio as well as our reputation to deliver consistent first-class services.” In the past few years, AXA Gulf has demonstrated its commitment to being available, reliable and attentive. Thanks to these

investments, AXA Gulf now provides a unique range of contact points for its customers: brokers, Internet, walk-in branches, mall shops and the telephone. AXA Insurance Gulf has been conferred with numerous industry awards over the last couple of years, reinforcing the company’s commitment to innovation and excellence in the cluttered Middle East Insurance environment.


Increasing revenues for banks through soft skills coaching A morning symposium held at The Capital Club and delivered by Beckett McInroy Consultancy (BMC International), in association with the Bahrain Association of Banks (BAB) focused on change management, soft skills to enable smooth transition, coaching within organisations and revenue assurance. Additional speakers included Major Mike Jackson, Mr. Riyaz Jivanjee and Ms. Delphine Boireau. “One of the main messages was that the market is inundated with trainers and courses, however, numerous research studies, indicate that the return on investment (ROI) for training is around 20% and yet when combined with coaching to ensure skills, knowledge and behaviours are embedded and that training has a sustained impact, this figure reaches above 80%.” With the banking sector managing transition in many ways, the professionals that attended the symposium identified the emotions around lack of professionalism and trust,

increased compliance from Central Bank of Bahrain and global influences, desire to increase revenue and career uncertainty. The audience was invited to identify their strengths and development areas and were informed of psychometric tools to inform competency frameworks. Finally, the benefits of training willing employees to develop coaching skills, in line with international stands and codes of ethics was also highlighted.

Citi Launches Rewards Programme in Bahrain Citi Bahrain has announced the launch of Citi’s exclusive Rewards programme giving its local credit card clients access to leading merchandise from across the globe including product catalogue redemptions, airline/hotel points transfer capabilities and end-to-end travel bookings online.

Through Citi’s Rewards website, customers now have the option to redeem their accumulated reward points by choosing and shipping their desired products directly to the Kingdom. They can use the Rewards Travel Centre that allows point redemption on anything from flights and hotels to rental cars and holiday activities.

Navneet Kampani, Consumer Banking Head at Citibank Bahrain said: “Credit Card Customers will not need to call Citiphone for their rewards redemption requirements anymore. This will make a huge difference to our customers who wish to benefit from these rewards all the time wherever they are. Also, if the clients do not have

enough points for their travel, they simply pay the difference using their Citi Credit Cards." A new global catalogue of over 5,000 merchandise items from international brands is now available with a few clicks including electronics, jewelry, sporting goods, travel goods, and more.

Al Salam Bank Bahrain to pay BD10million in dividend The shareholders of Al Salam Bank Bahrain will get BD10.705 million as dividend following the approval of the board recommendation at the bank’s AGM in February. The meeting was held at Al Murjan Ballroom in the Movenpick Hotel. The dividend payout amounts to 5% of the paid-up capital for the year ended December 2014. The bank reported a net profit of BD15.6 million for last year as against BD12.4 million in 2013. Gross operating income amounted to BD46.1

million against BD26.1 million in 2013. Earnings per share for the year amounted to eight fils slightly less than 2013 of 8.3 fils. Total operating expenses of the group increased from BD11.4 million to BD26.4 million due to business combination with BMI Bank.

increased 9% from BD624.1 million in 2013 to BD680.7 million at the end of last year. The bank recorded a growth of 107% in its financing portfolio despite a challenging credit and market environment.

The shareholders were informed that the bank had achieved a growth of 15% in total assets from $2.5 billion to $2.9 billion.

Al Salam Bank’s net lending position was BD353 million at the end of last year in addition to which it is holding a large portfolio of the Central Bank of Bahrain issued sukuk with the option to resell.

Customers’ deposits also

Subject to Central Bank of

Bahrain approval the 11member new board of directors will include: Shaikha Hessa bint Khalifa Al Khalifa, H.E. Shaikh Khalid bin Mustahail Al Mashani, Mr. Hussain Mohammed Al Meeza, Mr. Salman Saleh Al Mahmeed, H.E. Mohamed Ali Alabbar, Mr. Essam bin Abdulkadir Al Muhaidib, Mr. Sulaiman bin Mohammed Al Yahyai, Mr. Hisham Saleh Al Saie, Mr. Khalid Al Halyan, Mr. Mohammed Ghanem, Mr. Yousif Abdullah Taqi. EY (Ernst & Young) were reappointed as external auditors for the year to 31st December 2015. Forum 21


Feature Article

Insurance Policies Safeguard Businesses from Major Financial Losses Companies who run their businesses in Bahrain with no insurance coverage for key individuals, those substantially contributing to the organisation’s success, are putting themselves at risk for major financial losses, industry experts have warned. Key man and shareholder insurance is a corporate-owned life insurance that protects the interests of a business by providing an organisation the financial compensation it requires to continue operating should a valuable employee pass away or suffer a permanent total disability. Nexus Financial Services say shareholder insurance policies are especially important for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), in which the owner and founder typically plays a significant role in the profitability of the business. “If a company does not have a succession plan, what will often happen is the business will suddenly fall into the hands of an investor or relative, who does not necessarily have the skillset or perhaps an interest in running the company. This can have devastating consequences on the business, and in the worst case it could shut down,” said Emanuel Lantzos, General Manager at Nexus. “In a scenario like this, a shareholder protection policy will give the company the money it needs to buy out the investor or relative and find a new partner, so that it can sustain itself. In Bahrain, where SMEs set the foundation of the country’s economy, such protection is critical.” According to the Bahrain Chamber of Commerce, 95 per cent of enterprises in Bahrain are SMEs. SMEs also account for a significant portion of the Country’s GDP, and its total workforce. Little information is available on the percentage of SMEs who implement key person protection policies; however international figures have demonstrated how small businesses are considerably 22 Forum

dependent on just a few key people for their success and viability. In a 2007 survey of small businesses conducted by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in the US, 71% said that they were “very dependent” on only one or two key people. However the same study found that among these small businesses, only 22% had key person life insurance and 15% had key person disability insurance, with 7% of businesses having both types of coverage.

In a larger enterprise or corporation, the same type of policy would cover individuals who are responsible for delivering the most significant contributions to the company. “These are valuable individuals who strategically or intellectually drive revenue streams, either through their network of contacts or unique skillsets. In this case, key man insurance can protect company profits by compensating the business should you lose income and revenue caused by that person’s absence,” Mr Lantzos said. “It can cover the costs resulting from loss of revenue, loss of intellectual capital, downtime, and the training and recruitment fees associated with replacing that person. Normally, depending upon their specialism, it can cost anywhere between 6 and 18 months of that persons income just to replace them.” Despite the clear benefits of key person insurance, a lack of awareness coupled with the transient nature of many businesses is leaving numerous companies in Bahrain unprotected. “Although you will find these schemes

in place at many multi-national organisations, there is still not enough awareness among SMEs, and that is when these policies really matter,” said Mr Lantzos. “Some of these businesses have multimillion-dinar turnovers, but have no protection against losing valuable individuals, whose absence changes everything in a heart-beat. “If you own a company of 100 people and you are the business, you are the owner and the driving force bringing in the deals, and something were to happen to you, the business could fail and all of a sudden you have 100 people and their families with no place to go. It is not only for the purpose of safeguarding profits, but also for protecting all employees in that company, that business owners must consider and face these matters.” This lack of awareness can be seen globally, Mr Lantzos said, however a number of factors that contribute to this trend are unique to the Bahrain and the region. These include an insufficient understanding of how these insurance policies work, as well as the temptation of short-term wins. “What tends to happen is when SMEs first start up, the owners are busy getting off the ground and cannot afford to put in all the nuts and bolts,” Mr Lantzos said. “But as the business starts to grow, they have the responsibility of safeguarding it and its employees from such an unfortunate incident. It is finding the right time to make that investment that businesses often struggle with.” There is no hard and fast formula for calculating how much a key person is worth, but Nexus can help you look at a number of factors, including share holder agreements, company valuations, contributions to revenue, value of intellectual capital, and cost of replacement.

Emanuel Lantzos is General Manager at Nexus Financial Services in Bahrain. For more information contact him on Emanuel.lantzos@nexusadvice.com


Financial News

Nexus Financial Services Wins “Personal Lines Broker” Award at Mena Insurance Industry Awards 2015 Nexus Group, the region’s leading financial services and insurance broker, has won the coveted prize of “Personal Lines Broker” at the Mena Insurance Awards 2015. This honour marks the company’s 14th award in nine years. Nexus Group impressed the panel of expert judges, comprised of industry leaders in the MENA insurance market, with its indepth understanding of the Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, and Lebanon markets it operates in, and the “one-stop shop” service it offers for insurance, savings and investment needs. The annual Mena Insurance Awards recognise and reward those Mena-based insurers, reinsurers and brokers that have demonstrated

exceptional customer service and innovative product development over the past 12 months. The personal lines business at Nexus Group showed tremendous growth during 2014, with some segments showing a 33% increase year on year, and the total number of active clients climbing 15%.

“The growth in our business demonstrates our commitment to understanding and responding to client needs. At Nexus we firmly believe that “One size fits no one” hence, providing face-toface bespoke financial advice is a key ability for us,” said Tarun Khanna, Nexus Group CEO. As part of the company’s

drive to develop and promote professional standards, Financial Consultants are evaluated against the standards of the UK’s Chartered Insurance Institute (CII). After two weeks initial residential training, Financial Consultants are required to achieve the CII Award in Financial Planning within eighteen months of starting their role, followed by the CII Award in Investment Planning. The firm has its own internal Compliance Department to ensure that all customers have the correct financial product to address their needs and that legal and regulatory requirements are fulfilled. The company also uses technology extensively for purposes including producing quotations and analysing client data.

$5billion expansion for Oil Refinery ahead with key projects that are needed to develop the economy.

According to a report from Trade Arabia early in March, an expansion of Bahrain’s Sitra crude oil refinery is expected to cost around $5 billion and the facility is likely to be commissioned by 2019. “We have the refinery modernisation which will cost around $5 billion. Already front-end engineering and design (FEED) has been awarded - FEED should be ready by the end of the first quarter of 2016,” said Bahrains Energy Minister Abdul-Hussain bin Ali Mirza. “The increase in capacity according to the current plan is from 260,000 barrels per day to 360,000 and it will be commissioned by 2019.” 24 Forum

Construction of a pipeline between Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, which will replace an ageing one and lift capacity to 350,000 bpd from 230,000, is expected to be finished by 2018, Mirza also said. He added, “Financing will be through borrowing, we haven’t finalised this yet.” Bahrain lacks the ample crude oil and financial resources of the big Gulf energy exporters, and its state finances are under heavy pressure from the plunge of oil prices since last year but Bahraini officials have said they will press

He added that this year Bahrain would ask companies to bid to explore offshore blocks for oil and gas. He did not give a specific date or say which companies would participate as a roadshow for investors has not taken place yet. The chief executive of Bahrain’s National Oil and Gas Holding Co, Mohamed

Al-Khalifa, told reporters on Monday that the launch of the bidding round “will depend on the situation of the market”. The Minister had earlier inaugurated a Renewable Energy for Sustainable Development Seminar in February organised by the University of Bahrain in cooperation with the National Oil and Gas Authority (NOGA) and Electricity and Water Authority (EWA) and supported by Bahrain Petroleum Company (Bapco) Gulf Petrochemical Industries Company (GPIC). “The theme of the seminar was important for the energy sector,” he said “which was working hard to meet the needs of future generations and encourage rational use of resources.”


Motoring News Euro Motors - Jaguar Land Rover

Bahraini Journalist Participates in LandIslamic Rover Global Exclusive Promotion with Bahrain BankMedia Ride and Drive for the new Discovery Sport in Iceland Euro Motors, the exclusive dealer and distributor for luxury automotive manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover in the Kingdom of Bahrain, announced that it sent Mr. Mohammed A. Kayani, one of the most established automotive journalists in the Kingdom, to Iceland to witness first hand and experience the unparalleled durability and endurance capabilities of the new Land Rover Discovery Sport as part of Land Rover’s Global Media Ride and Drive programme. The Global Media Ride and Drive is an event organised by Land Rover each time they launch a new product; wherein motoring journalists from all over the world are invited to test drive the new vehicles. These test drives are held in the most extreme conditions to demonstrate the amazing capabilities of the new Land Rover vehicles in all weather and terrain conditions. The Global Media Ride and Drive in Iceland spread over two days, specifically the 11th and the 12th of January 2015 and is designed to elaborate on the powerful performance, versatility, off-road capabilities and technological advancements of the brand new 2-litre Discovery Sport, thereby showing-off the expertise Land Rover has established over the decades, in manufacturing cars that behave and perform in an exceptional manner. Motoring enthusiasts in the Kingdom of Bahrain will not have to wait long to be enthralled by the Discovery Sport as the vehicle is being launched in the Kingdom towards the end of February, 2015. Elaborating on the significance of the event, Mr. Simon Ellis, Euro Motors Jaguar Land Rover General Manager said: “We at Euro Motors Jaguar Land Rover, are elated to be part of this unique initiative that gives motoring journalists from the MENA and LEVANTE region the chance to view, experience and recognise personally the revolutionary advancements that have been made on the new Land Rover Discovery Sport that proves the constant evolution of Land Rover and maintains their status as leaders in the SUV industry worldwide. The Global Media Ride and Drive is designed to stress on the Discovery Sports’ certified unlimited potential; all this packed in a design concept whose size is considerably smaller than other Land Rover vehicles. Land Rover has taken great strides in their march towards producing the next generation of vehicles that will herald the future and this event showcases how far they have left the competition behind owing to the substantial progress seen in the new Discovery Sport.” “Mr. Mohammed Kayani is a highly respected and renowned automotive mastermind with a vast experience that is unrivalled in the motoring industry in the Kingdom of Bahrain and as such, he was our chosen candidate for a trip where Land Rover expects the most seasoned automotive journalists to take the new Discovery Sport through the paces. We are certain that he will enjoy his time there, not only because of the scenic beauty that is Iceland but due to the raw power and inherently good looks of the new Discovery Sport,” he added. 26 Forum

Speaking ecstatically about the test drive trip to Iceland, Mr. Mohammed A. Kayani said: “I am looking forward to this trip because Iceland isn’t a destination you really get to travel to everyday. From what I know it offers scenic landscapes but also some tricky terrain that will really test the cars to their limits, which is something I love to do. Its great when manufacturers throw a challenge that is honest and real. Due to changing trends most SUV manufacturers have gone soft on off-road capabilities - manufacturing cars more for the road then for off-road. Land Rover is one of the only manufacturers especially with its Discovery range that has stayed true to what they do. These are cars that have a tradition of being as hard as nails, but with all the new gadgets and gizmos, I would really like to see if they still pack the punch that they once did. Overall I am looking forward to a great experience, whether its watching the Northern Lights at night or just driving in snow, rivers and mud. Either way its going to be an adventure, one quite like none other.” Mr. Mohammed A. Kayani is the editor of Arabia Motors magazine, which was the first automotive publication in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Having driven all kinds of vehicles from sports cars, to saloons and SUVs, Mr. Mohammed holds an experience that spans approximately 20 years in the automotive industry. Since the start of its operations in 1998, Euro Motors has successfully positioned itself as the leader in the automotive industry in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Continually striving to attain the highest standards, Euro Motors does not compromise on presentation, quality, technical service or customer care in accord with its belief in offering the utmost to customers.


AT THE SEASON’S FIRST NIGHT RACE

17-18-19 APRIL 2015


Motoring News

McLaren unveils new Supercar

Jaguar F-Pace

An all-new performance crossover to join line-up in 2016 Jaguar has confirmed it will introduce an all-new model to the Jaguar line-up, to go on-sale in 2016, named the Jaguar F-PACE. Ian Callum,Director of Design, Jaguar, commented: “We received such an overwhelmingly positive response to the C-X17 concept car last year that we just had to make it a reality.

The McLaren 675LT, which made its global debut at the 85th International Geneva Motor Show, will be the lightest, most powerful and fastest model in the McLaren Super Series, and also the most exclusive: production will be strictly limited to just 500 examples worldwide. The limited production model has a clear focus on light weight, optimised aerodynamics, increased power, track-focused dynamics and driver engagement. At its core is the lightweight carbon fibre MonoCell chassis, shared with each model in the Super Series, but the chassis set up and powertrain are bespoke, with a third of overall parts and components modified. A more aggressive set up gives the 675LT a unique trackfocused feel, while still retaining the adjustable ProActive Chassis Control to ensure drivability and comfort levels are maintained. Lightweight springs front and rear have been stiffened – 27 percent at the front and 63 percent at the rear – to improve body control and allow for the 40 percent increase in downforce generated by the revised bodywork and active aerodynamics. Newly-developed suspension geometry includes lightweight uprights and wishbones based on the learnings from the McLaren P1™. The 675LT uses the familiar seven-speed SSG transmission found in the other Super Series models, retaining the Normal, Sport or Track modes. These settings have been recalibrated to produce more eager performance, with optimised throttle response and gearshifts up to twice as fast as previously offered. The newly developed ‘Ignition Cut’ technology is a technique adopted from Formula 1™ which sees a momentary cut of the fuel spark on gearshift. This delivers the fastest change possible, and is accompanied by a dramatic aural ‘crack’ on both upshift and downshift. Also debuting on the 675LT is an all-new Electronic Stability Control (ESC) calibration, giving the driver an even greater level of control over the throttle and brake inputs. The limited edition McLaren 675LT is available to order from all McLaren Retailers, priced from £259,500. Deliveries will commence from July 2015. 32 Forum

“The Jaguar FPACE, inspired by the F-TYPE, represents a perfectly judged balance of performance,style and practicality. It offers a unique combination of Jaguar sports car inspired exterior design, fused beautifully with a thoroughly practical and spacious luxury interior. The F-PACE is our family sports car.” The Jaguar F-PACE couples class-leading interior space and exceptional on-road dynamics with five-seat usability to produce a true performance crossover. It will encapsulate everything that Jaguar stands for: beautiful design, precise handling, a supple ride, luxurious interior finishes and cuttingedge technology. Speaking in Detroit, Andy Goss, Jaguar Land Rover Global Sales Director said: “In 2015 we will celebrate Jaguar’s 80th year. We have started it by announcingour first performance crossover which we consider to be the ultimate practical sports car -a car that builds on the marque’s founding ideals of Grace, Pace and Space to become one of the most innovative Jaguars we’ve ever developed. The F-PACEhas now begun its engineering and development testing programme ahead of the new model going on sale in 2016.” The F-PACE will be manufactured in Solihull, UK.


Motoring News

The groundbreaking McLaren Super Series continues to break records • • •

McLaren Super Series comprising McLaren 12C, 650S and Asia-only 625C becomes the highest volume carbon fibre supercar range ever 5000 examples assembled since the production commenced in early 2011 Latest addition to the Super Series, the McLaren 675LT, is confirmed for global premiere at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2015

In February McLaren Automotive celebrated the build of the 5,000th model based on the groundbreaking carbon fibre MonoCell chassis, which forms the recently announced McLaren Super Series, in only the fourth full year of vehicle production. Launched initially with the 12C in 2011, and followed by the 12C Spider and then 650S and Asia-only 625C, the Super Series is now the highest volume carbon fibre supercar range ever. This milestone comes shortly after McLaren announced a third consecutive growth in sales, with more than 1,400 Super Series models being delivered during 2014. The 5,000th car, a Volcano Yellow 650S Spider commissioned for a customer in Australia rolled from the assembly line in the McLaren Production Centre on Monday, 2 February. It was joined at the end of the production line by the first production 12C, which has now become part of the McLaren Heritage Collection. Production of the 12C began at the start of 2011, with these early models assembled by approximately 30 employees in a designated manufacturing facility within the McLaren Technology Centre. Deliveries commenced globally from June, before the state-of-the-art McLaren Production Centre opened its doors in November, becoming the birthplace of all McLaren roadcars. The bespoke facility was designed by Foster + Partners, and combines outstanding quality with highly efficient production methods. It is now a home to over 500 employees working across the manufacturing and logistics operations. 34 Forum

In March 2014, the assembly line was updated to accommodate the production requirements for the new McLaren 650S in response to strong customer demand. ‘McLaren has come a long way in four short years. The completion of the 5,000th vehicle in the Super Series is a fantastic milestone for the brand. The 12C was, and still is, a groundbreaking supercar and, true to the values of McLaren, we have continued to develop and build on this great product into the 650S which has delighted our customers and won countless awards across the world,’ said Mike Flewitt, Chief Executive Officer at McLaren Automotive. ‘We have built a solid foundation for the business, delivering record numbers year on year, and I look forward to our next production milestone with the addition of the 675LT to the Super Series, and the new Sports Series later in the year.’ Close to 450 of the 5,000 cars produced so far have been sold or allocated to the Middle East & Africa region, with the United Arab Emirates and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia leading the demand. This is a relatively small number of cars when compared to the numbers produced by McLaren Automotive competitors, however, this is a key component of the company’s business strategy to ensure exclusivity. As such, the Middle East region has a strong 650S order bank, as exclusivity is one of the attractions of McLaren ownership along with greater power performance and technologies than the competition. The McLaren Super Series forms the core range of McLaren supercar offering and sits above the recently announced Sports Series in the model hierarchy. The family of models will be soon expanded with the recently-announced McLaren 675LT, confirmed for global reveal at the 2015 International Geneva Motor Show in March. The announcement follows an internal staff ceremony attended by over 1,400 employees at the McLaren Production Centre in Woking, Surrey.


Euro Motors shows off new Discovery Sport during Bahrain launch event Euro Motors Jaguar Land Rover, celebrated the MENA debut of Land Rover’s hotly anticipated New Discovery Sport in February, introducing the vehicle to an enthusiastic audience during an exclusive event hosted at the recently opened Land Rover Experience Centre at the Bahrain International Circuit. Turning heads since its worldwide debut at this year’s Paris Motor Show, the new Discovery Sport has been billed as the world’s most versatile and capable premium compact SUV, unique to its segment and is set to receive an overwhelming response from MENA customers when it goes on sale in the region early next year. The event welcomed over 600 guests including VIPs, customers and key members of the media who were treated to an exclusive unveiling of the first member of Land Rover’s new Discovery family. Complete with thrilling live acts embodying the unique blend of refinement, performance and unmatched all-terrain capability that epitomizes Land Rover vehicles, guests were welcomed in a unique set-up that blended traditional Bahraini culture with the modern face of Bahrain in total harmony. During the event, guests were treated to traditional entertainment performances that mirror the celebrations of significant occasions in the Kingdom of Bahrain. The Discovery Vision Concept was also on display during the night, offering a further glimpse into the vision of Land Rover’s future family of Discovery vehicles. The concept car, revealed earlier this year at the New York Motor Show, previews a dynamic new design language and an array of innovative versatility and capability features, whilst also showcasing pioneering technologies from Jaguar Land Rover’s advanced research division. Speaking about the launch, Bruce Robertson, MD of Jaguar Land Rover MENA said: “The Discovery Sport combines premium dynamic design and versatility which I am confident will resonate on an emotional level with our MENA customers, and we expect this to deliver solid results when sales start

early next year. This vehicle has garnered a huge amount of attention globally and here in the region since the official unveiling in Paris and we are extremely proud to be revealing the new Discovery Sport here in Bahrain.” Mr. Nawaf Khalid Al Zayani, Managing Director of Euro Motors, the official distributor of Land Rover vehicles in Bahrain, added: “We are honoured to unveil the Discovery Sport to our distinguished customers and VIPs in the Kingdom of Bahrain. We are confident that this vehicle will exceed customer’s expectations when sales start early next year.” Anticipation for the new Discovery Sport launch has been building up over the last few months as car enthusiasts across the MENA region have been closely watching Global Engineers conduct a final series of hot weather tests on the new Discovery Sport prototypes with the Jaguar Land Rover Engineering Centre in Dubai. The prototypes were put through their paces during arduous Middle East hot weather tests which included off-road desert capability, transmission calibration and brake noise temperatures up to a sweltering 50°C. The exclusive behind-the-scenes footage of the hot weather testing captured the new Discovery Sport showing off its exceptional capabilities, making it one of the most accomplished vehicles in its segment. A host of innovations have allowed Discovery Sport to boast a progressive new design approach and introduce the versatility of 5+2 seating into the premium compact SUV class for the first time, in a seating no larger than existing 5-seat premium SUVs. Coupled with supple long-travel suspension, the innovative rear axle also ensures the Discovery Sport is comfortable, refined and rewarding to drive on-road, while retaining the breadth of the class-leading all-terrain capability for which Land Rover is world-renowned. As with every new Land Rover, safety has been a key priority in the development of the new Discovery Sport, resulting in a first-in-class pedestrian airbag, autonomous emergency braking, and a state-of-the-art bodyshell featuring both ultrahigh-strength steel and lightweight aluminium. This represents a fraction of the advanced equipment available in Discovery Sport, which also includes Head-Up Display (HUD), an all-new 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system, and tilt-and-slide row-two seating for maximum interior configurability. The new Discovery Sport range of four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engines will be available across the region from early 2015 with prices starting from BHD 16,000. Forum 35


Construction Sector SSH Bahrain wins Ras Al Barr Resort project We are happy to announce that SSH Bahrain has been awarded the prestigious Ras Al Barr Resort, by PK Development Company W.L.L. SSH won the contract through a tendering process, after competing with other local and international consultancies, to provide master planning, architecture and engineering consultancy services in the new 1.5 million sqm reclamation development located in the south of the country’s main land. Mr Hisham Almoayed, PK Development Company W.L.L. Acting CEO, expands further on the motives of the project and what it consists of: “Aligned with Bahrain’s 2030 economic vision, the Ras Al Barr Project aims to create a unique sustainable mixeduse waterfront development offering a range of waterfront housing options, themed

hotels, retail and souqs, public waterfront and sandy beaches, as well as community facilities, schools, parklands, and sport facilities. The development will be supported by a high standard of infrastructure services designed to adoptable standards. The project is set to be greatly advantageous to those seeking affordable Waterfront residence while enjoying the “Durrat Al Bahrain” waterfront lifestyle. We believe the Ras Al Barr Project to be a unique property offering and we are very excited to be working with one of the leading masterplanners in the region SSH, supported by AECOM as one of the leading consultants worldwide in infrastructure, marine, and environmental consultancy services.” Ras Al Barr Development is located to the south of Durrat

Al Bahrain resort and in close proximity to Ras Al Barr. The project will be developed on a total site area of 1100 hectares, with approximately 440 hectares of reclaimed land. The development will require both dredging and reclamation activities as well as subsequent development of the reclaimed land mass. The first phase is an open gated development and consists of 3 islands comprising of small to medium residential clusters, water front apartment blocks, souk, yacht club, 4 hotels, schools, commercial area, mosque, and beach area. The second phase consists of the gated community

development comprising of medium to large residential waterfront mix spread on 14 islands. SSH’s Design Director, Ray Phillips, and Architecture Director, Simon Dennison, will lead the design team located in our Bahrain office. SSH Bahrain General Manager, Andrew Barwick said: “We are delighted and proud to be working on one of Bahrain’s most anticipated developments located on the prestigious Ras Al Barr peninsular. SSH remains fully committed to delivering design quality and successful projects for our esteemed clients and for the Kingdom of Bahrain”

Foster & Partners win Qatar contract Foster & Partners, a leading UK-based architecture firm, has been awarded the contract to design the stadium that will host the final of the Fifa 2022 World Cup in Qatar. The stadium, which will have a seating capacity for 80,000, will be built in the purpose-built city of Lusail, 15 km north of Doha. “We look forward to working with Foster & Partners in creating an iconic, contemporary stadium inspired by Qatari culture,” Hassan Al Thawadi, the secretary-general of Qatar’s 36 Forum

Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, was quoted as saying.

billion construction project for a new city being built in time for the World Cup.

Architects’ Journal quoted him as saying: “It will be the first to break the mould of the free-standing suburban concept and instead anticipates the grid of this future city, of which it will be an integral part.”

“Lusail Stadium will be the centrepiece of the tournament, an architecturally innovative stadium which maintains sporting functionality and delivers on our sustainability commitments.” The stadium at Lusail is set to host the first game of the tournament as well as the opening ceremony according to various reports. The stadium will be the showpiece of a massive $45-

contract as “an exciting step forward in stadium design”.

Sir Norman Foster, of Foster & Partners, welcomed the news of his firm’s latest

He added: “The project also pioneers the idea of an ongoing life for the stadium beyond the big event. The environmental strategies, particularly those that address the players and the spectators, will also be of international interest.”


Forum 37


Education Sector

Students in Bahrain discover the world of Aerospace Engineering with BAE Systems

As part of an on-going STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) educational outreach programme, top BAE Systems engineers hosted a series of workshops and presentations for students at two boys schools and two girls schools in Bahrain on December 10th and 11th. Alexandria Monkiewicz and Matthew Wilson, both Engineering Apprentices at BAE Systems’ Air division in the UK, discussed the critical importance of STEM subjects to students and gave them deep insight into the field and career path of engineering. The workshops, which were organised in partnership with the British Council and Bahrain’s Ministry of Education, focused specifically on aerospace engineering, with special sessions on flying forces, air resistance and the basics of flight.

38 Forum

Each class was briefed on key concepts of aerospace engineering and then split into groups where students had to design and create a range of functional models - from complex paper aeroplanes to stunt parachutes. These activities helped students understand the basic physics behind everyday engineering marvels such as aircraft and how STEM subjects can help guide and propel their careers. Each of these workshops also linked in with the current curriculum in the schools and will allow the teachers to follow up the exercise later in the school year. Andrew Humphreys, Vice-President Middle East, BAE Systems, commented: “These workshops are the foundation of our educational programme in Bahrain and embody our long-term commitment to supporting educational development through the critical STEM curriculum.

We are delighted to give students insight into the field of engineering and the rewarding career opportunities it offers.” BAE Systems, which provides support and maintenance for the HAWK advanced training aircraft operated by the Royal Bahraini Air Force, has developed a number of workshops that engage and educate students. Each workshop has a common set of aims; to develop the thinking and engagement on STEM subjects, to encourage team work and to encourage structured thinking in the completion of a task. Some BAE Systems education activities are aviation-focused, while others give students the opportunity to meet and seek career guidance from top engineers in the field. In Bahrain and around the world, BAE Systems is committed to supporting and developing the skills of young people. BAE Systems’ STEM educational outreach programmes aim to engage, inspire and motivate students to discover and explore fulfilling careers in the fields of science and engineering.


Teaching Excellence

International Baccalaureate (IB) World School and will be offering the IB diploma programme alongside its well-developed A-level and Business and Technology Education Council (BTEC) programmes in the Sixth Form. “We are using the IB authorisation process to develop our commitment to the transformational power of education and to ensuring BSB students care for our world and are willing, able and determined to play their part in making the world a better place,” says the school spokesperson.

With the aim of providing the best possible education to its students, one of Bahrain’s top schools is planning to update its curriculum in the coming year. Children are the future of the world and education plays a huge role in shaping a child’s life. The British School of Bahrain (BSB) is considered one of the best schools on the island where students come first.

The BSB boasts 100% pass rates at International General Certificate of Secondary Education (I/GCSE) and A-Level General Certificate of Education (A’ GCE) and was rated as outstanding in all areas when inspected by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA). The school, located in Hamala, caters to ages three to 18-years, educating all the children on one campus. “With state-of-the-art facilities,

Bahrain British Business Forum supports graduates to make solid connections The national focus on developing the skills of young people, and in particular supporting graduates to get connected to work easily, is dear to the hearts of BBBF members. We can all remember the challenges of getting the first opportunity. Dena Wales is spearheading an initiative, with my support, to create a sustainable way to support graduates and young people who are entering full time employment.

I invited some of my final year students (now graduates) to attend recent lunches and they really enjoyed meeting two of our speakers and a number of members and we are going to capitalize on this interest with the formation of a graduate/ young professionals group. “We want to thank the BBBF for the invitation to the lunch events and we enjoyed this opportunity very much. However, I can

motivated students, superb teaching and supportive parents, we promise you an inclusive international education in a school where all children are known, cherished and supported every step of the way as they secure places at the best universities in the world including Oxbridge,” says the school spokesperson. Over the course of the next year, BSB is set to become an see that BBBF members are there to network with other business people rather than to network with students or graduates. So I have suggested to Jill that we get together and establish a working relationship that is mutually beneficial so we don’t wear out our welcome” said Fawaz Ahmed, Bachelor of Business, management graduate. “We will find out what works for BBBF members and find out how we might be able to help the BBBF by passing on some of our skills, such as research or social media knowledge. As the next generation of

To see how well BSB might serve your child’s aspirations, contact admissions@thebsbh.com. Parents can also see the school in action during one of the forthcoming open days, which will be held on March 5 and March 26 from 8am to 2pm and on March 14 from 11am to 1pm. Alternatively, people can contact admissions for a personalised tour of the school on the day of their choosing. business people we are very committed to making a contribution and just need the right opportunity to shine” From my experience as a tutor at the Bahrain Polytechnic I can see that all these students need is encouragement and opportunity to make great connections and I hope that this initiative will provide both and that members will benefit from the skills and ideas coming from these creative and hardworking young people. By Jill Boggiss, Bahrain Polytechnic Forum 39


Education Sector

Bahrain students compete in Paris Four students from Bahrain Polytechnic travelled to Paris to participate in the 10th ICC (International Chamber of Commerce) International Commercial Mediation Competition from 6-12 February 2015. During the seven days, the ICC welcomed over 600 participants from all over the world to engage in this unique forum for mediation. Essentially the competition comprised of highly complex commercial scenarios which the students were left to resolve during the mediation sessions. This follows from the initial participation of the Polytechnic students last year where they were the first ever in the GCC participate in this competition. Bahrain Polytechnic still remains the only participating institute in the GCC and hopes that more universities within Bahrain and the region would be encouraged to take part in the future. As the students’ coach and Law tutor, I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to work with such a talented young team. The diligence and dedication demonstrated by the team was remarkable. They had great enthusiasm even when working long hours to prepare for the sessions. Yusuf Alaseeri (team member) describes the coaching process as “long and arduous, but it was worth it in the end, as I got to spend a week meeting new people, whether they were students, coaches, mediators, judges, or organisers.” He also states that what makes this experience unique is that he had the opportunity “to amass new knowledge about different cultures and how they perceive the Arab culture. Not

only was the competition great for learning and applying an exciting new medium; mediation, but it was an irreplaceable self-development and learning opportunity” Ms. Fajer Al Janahi who is a co-coach for the team commented that “being able to see the huge improvement in the student’s abilities during the training sessions until the actual sessions in the competition is great. Personally I can see how things became much clearer after coaching for the second year in the competition. I’m really proud of the team members and I couldn’t ask for a better performance from them.” “Being granted the prestigious opportunity to participate in the ICC competition was an opportunity that enabled personal growth and the enhancement of certain skills. The preparation for the competition has improved my problem solving abilities as it required each member to go through the cases and make logical assumptions regarding the challenges we may face. We arranged several brainstorming sessions

Top British honour for long-time Bahrain educator A long-time Bahrain resident has been awarded a top UK honour for her services to education and the community. British national Sandra Whitford, founder and principal of the British Preparatory School in Saar, was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) at a ceremony in London’s Buckingham Palace by Britain’s Princess Anne. Well-known as the former headteacher of St Christopher’s School for 25 years, Ms Whitford is also the chairwoman of Conservatives Abroad’s Bahrain branch. “I am honoured to have received this award following 34 years in education, it is a great feeling,” she told reporters. “I was of course very excited and proud, but realise that it is a result of the wonderful support of all those with whom I have come into contact during my many years here in Bahrain.” Ms Whitford was born in Lytham St Annes in Lancashire and spent most of her childhood in the Oxford and Cambridge areas before moving with her parents to Hong Kong. She took her professional training in teaching and drama at Cambridge University’s Homerton College and taught in the UK for five years until she moved with her Gulf Air pilot husband Ian to Muscat, Oman in 1975. 40 Forum

After a year of teaching English as a second language, Ms Whitford and her husband again moved to Abu Dhabi where she began teaching at The British School in Al Khubairat, before they both arrived in Bahrain in 1980. At St Christopher’s she was a part of several developments including the taking over of Awali School from Bapco, the closing down of the school’s Manama branch and the reorganisation of the schools into Infant, Junior and Senior sections. Ms Whitford also organised the visits of UK royals to the school, produced and directed several school productions and helped with the charity work of the Royal Society of St George in Bahrain. She also ran voluntary teaching courses at the Education Ministry for Bahraini teachers hoping to teach English for many years.


seeking creative options to overcome obstacles or attempt to resolve the dispute. Those skills are the key employability skills that Bahrain Polytechnic aims to promote for its student to implement.” Noof Albinali (team member) Jenan Mohamed (team member) summarises the overall theme of each negotiation in a mediation session as requiring “teamwork, collaborations and creative solutions” she continues, “Through the mediation experience, I believe that every dispute has a potential opportunity to settle amicably. “Win-win” situation can be achieved even within complex cases; it requires an individual to be open minded and willingness to collaborate” A critical part of self development, particularly in this competition is to accept constructive criticism and be willing to change certain behaviour when required. Students found that the more receptive they became to criticism and let their guards down the more creative the solutions were. Mariam Alhayki (team member) explains that through this competition she learnt “how to overcome my weakness, criticise my mistakes to become a better student and a better team worker” We have benefited considerably from this experience and are now looking forward to preparing for the next ICC competition in February 2016 with new and equally exceptionally talented students. by Yasmin Sebah Law Tutor, Bahrain Polytechnic

Following the success of The Sovereign Asian Art Prize, now in its 11th year, and in particular The Sovereign Art Foundation Schools Prize in Hong Kong, the Sovereign Art Foundation has joined forces with the Royal Charity Organisation to launch The Sovereign Art Foundation Schools Prize 2014 in Bahrain and now the Sovereign Art Foundation is working side by side with the Royal Charity Organisation to start the second season of The Sovereign Art Foundation Schools Prize in 2015. The aim of the prize is to celebrate the importance of art in the education system and recognise the quality of art that can be produced by young students in Bahrain and raise money for the Royal Charity Organisation. We will organise a Press conference at the Capital Club on 17th March 2015. All student entries will be displayed in Isa Cultural Centre in an art exhibition, open officially on 22 April 2015, the exhibition will be open to the public for seven days. The Gala Dinner will be at The Four Seasons Bahrain Bay on the 3rd of May 2015. The top four paintings from each school level will receive a BD.500 prize as a donation from Sovereign Trust Consultancy (Bahrain) W.L.L. These finalists will then be auctioned with proceeds benefitting the Royal Charity Organisation to support 5,000 orphan children in Bahrain.

Forum 41


Travel News

How British Airways’ travel lounges cater to today’s globetrotting professional… Professionals today travel extensively crossing continents multiple times each month, stepping straight off the plane into meetings and catching quick down time at airport lounges. There is an increasing need for executives to be able to work, eat and rest while on the go. It is a lifestyle that can be challenging and has seen airport lounges become a more vital component to the entire journey.

Modern air travel incorporates so much more than just the time spent at 35,000 feet and carriers catering to the business travel segment need to provide amenities and luxuries that are essential to a business traveller. Any corporate traveller will be quick to tell you that airport lounges that offer WiFi and charging points for phones and laptops are a huge advantage. One of the world’s leading global premium airlines and the largest international carrier in the UK, British Airways, has 60 dedicated departure lounges, as well as an additional 90 partner lounges worldwide, which are all equipped to ensure that customers can experience the ‘best of British hospitality’ every time they fly. “We currently have an investment of £5 billion in elegant lounges, new aircraft, smarter cabins and new technologies that make life more 42 Forum

comfortable in the air and on the ground,” said Paolo De Renzis, British Airways’ Area Commercial Manager for the Middle East and Central Asia. “With the evolving needs of business travellers in particular, it is important for major airlines to maintain an ongoing investment in their airport services and amenities.”

Terminal 5, the dedicated British Airways terminal at London Heathrow, is home to six lounges built at a cost of £60 million that are the epitome of elegance and luxury, with select lounges created specially with the busy executive in mind. “Our lounges are easily accessible and within comfortable walking distance from luxury shopping. They also provide the option of privacy, for those travellers who want to sit back and enjoy some rest or catch up on work before flying on,” commented De Renzis. “Some of the highlight services offered at the British Airways lounges include a discreet boardroom for business passengers to conduct meetings, free WiFi, a dedicated concierge desk, an exclusive 15mins Elemis massage to refresh and relax the body, the opportunity to freshen up with a shower or have your suit pressed by a member of staff. “

Catering to First, Club World and frequent flyers, the lounges within Terminal 5 are collectively known as ‘Galleries’ and are designed to give British Airways passengers the chance to start or finish their time at Heathrow in ultimate style and comfort. For the business traveller flying Club World (British Airways’ business class), Club Europe or who are Gold and Silver Executive Club members, the airline offers three Galleries Club Lounges. There is one at each end of Terminal 5 and one in the satellite B building specially created for the long-haul passenger. •

All three Galleries Club Lounges feature complimentary ‘Silver’ bars, a deli and coffee house and free WiFi throughout the lounge

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The Club Lounges also offer a specially designed Kids Zone where little ones can unwind, giving the multitasking executive mother a chance to catch up on emails or calls.

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Of all the British Airways lounges these are the largest ranging from 440 to 830 in seating capacity, and they are designed to offer the latest in travel comforts, technology and amenities for the most savvy business travellers.

The corporate executive can get ready for the day ahead in the Galleries Arrivals Lounge at Terminal 5 by freshening up with a shower or enjoying quick refreshments. British Airways passengers can also request for a member of the British Airways staff to press their suit while they make use of one of the cabana day rooms with infinity bathrooms, for those occasions when there is downtime in the busy executive’s schedule. British Airways offers a worldwide route network of 179 destinations, 9 destinations in the UK, 84 in Europe and 86 across the rest of the world thereby offering business passengers choosing to fly with British Airways great connections to mainstream airports worldwide and reinforcing the airline’s position as a carrier of choice for the professional traveller of today.


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News from the Eastern Province Geoff Fennah MBE Chairman, EPBBA

Since the last publication we have seen the departure of Her MajestyÂ’s Ambassador (HMA) to Saudi Arabia Sir John Jenkins who has been appointed to a strategic position with the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) based in Bahrain. We wish him well in this new challenging role.

brings with him extensive experience in the Middle East including time spent in Syria & Iraq. We look forward to welcoming him to the Eastern Province in the not too distant future. The British Trade Office, Al-Khobar held a very successful Saudi British Energy Week (SBEW) in early February and hosted over 40 British companies interested in exploring opportunities in Saudi ArabiaÂ’s Energy sector. The British Government showed their support for the event by sending Lord Tom King, UK International Trade Advisor, as guest of honour to open the event. (picture bottom left) This would have been a nostalgic return to KSA for him as he was Minister of Defence during the Gulf War.

The appointment of the new Ambassador has recently been announced also so we welcome Simon Collis CMG to KSA (pictured above). He

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SBEW was a great success and it was good to see continuing UK interest in the energy sector despite the low oil price. Congratulations to

The British Business Association (BBA) - Eastern Province P.O.Box 1868, AlKhobar 31952 Tel: 03 882 5288 ext 1651 Fax: 03 882 5384 Email: secretary@bbaep.org Website: www.bbaep.com

Steve Graham and his team. Jeff Stewart represented the BBA and contributed with a presentation outlining the pros and cons of doing business in KSA. Turning now to BBA activities, the recently formed Oil and Gas (O&G) Special Interest Group (SIG) has now held three meetings and is proving to be a useful forum for exchanging information and ideas. Discussions are now also being held with the BBBF to establish a working relationship with their new O&G SIG to take advantage of the synergies between EP and Bahrain. A joint meeting is being planned for the near future and this will hopefully be the catalyst for holding more joint events as we move forward. The plan is to also explore other areas collaboration between BBBF and BBA and especially with other sector groups. Our geographical proximity and common business interests make this a sensible approach.

The annual Poppy Ball held in November 2014 must be considered to be the biggest and best yet with almost 350 attendees enjoying a fabulous evening and especially those who travelled over from Eastern Province. Congratulations to the BBBF Team for the excellent organisation of the event. It was a fitting occasion to commemorate the passing of 100 years since the onset of World War 1. Before we know it Armistice Day will be upon us again so the next Poppy Ball is already on the horizon, It is AGM season again and the BBA Annual General Meeting will be held on 21 April 2015. The past year has been challenging for the BBA in a number of areas and these will be areas of focus for the new committee. Should you have a need to contact us then send an email to our Secretary, Rachael Routledge on secretary@bbaep.com


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According to a recent independent report issued by the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), VIVA has the widest 4G LTE coverage in Bahrain, reaching 99.7% of the population. Just one of the many reasons why it’s great to be with VIVA.


Hotel & Leisure News New F&B Manager at Crowne Plaza

Stuart Stancombe

Crowne Plaza Bahrain has welcomed Stuart John Stancombe as its new Food & Beverage Manager Mr. Stancombe, originating from Great Britain, has over 10 years’ experience in the hospitality industry, having worked across five different countries in three continents. He has a degree in Philosophy from Southampton University, UK. Mr. Stancombe joins us from Movenpick Huma Island Resort, Palawan, Phillipines

after spending time in Maldives, UK and Dubai to name a few. He started at the Intercontinental in Toronto, Canada as Bar & Skylounge Manager then after 13 months was promoted to Restaurant Manager at Jumeirah Beach Hotel, Dubai. His next assignment was at the Savoy, London, as the Assistant F&B Director before he flew to the Maldives and took the helm as F&B manager at Keredu Island Resort & Spa. In his previous role at the Movenpick, he was instrumental in helping the team to increase the overall performance of the F&B department. As a hotelier, the father of 1 considered being a down to earth person, his need to satisfy his curiosity and being openminded as his character strengths. The same quality he vows to be the anchor of his leadership at Crowne Plaza, Bahrain. Stuarts’s primary role will be to strengthen our relationships with our guests and corporate clients, whilst effectively representing the Crowne Plaza brand and ensuring the hotel’s F&B department is in full working order and that its team delivers the brand promise in everything they do in a great working environment.

Best Business Hotel Award to Diplomat Radisson Blu

The Diplomat Radisson Blu Hotel, Residence & Spa has been recognised as the ‘Best Business Hotel in Bahrain’ by Business Destinations Travel Awards. Every year the Business Destinations Travel Awards in association with American Express review and recognize businesses that have positively contributed to corporate travel. Cities or travel firms around the world that have managed to prosper and develop in 2014 are awarded this recognition based on commitment to excellence in quality, customer care and business practice. Panos Panagis, general manager of the Diplomat Radisson Blu said “We are delighted to bring recognition not only to our hotel, but also to the Kingdom of Bahrain as a business friendly destination. Our team, through our “Yes I Can” philosophy and the support of the government of Bahrain, engaged with guests throughout the year to provide the service business travellers deserve”. The Diplomat Radisson Blu Hotel caters to all market segments, but is particularly popular with business and conference travellers. In addition to its 367 rooms, The Diplomat Radisson Blu offers 1.500 sq m of fully renovated

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meeting and events venues which were reopened in September 2014. The renovated facilities, at a cost of $6m, combines excellent corporate facilities with traditional influences, has seen a notable increase in the number of conventions, conferences and product launches. The hotel’s leading position in the corporate and meeting segment, is not only due to its modern meeting facilities but also to the emphasis it puts on food quality and personal interaction. This is demonstrated through the spirit of the employees who strive to deliver that extra touch that goes above and beyond guest expectations; touches that provide guests with a “home away from home” feeling that is particularly important for business travellers. “Such a commitment to the satisfaction of its customers means that it is little wonder that the hotel is one of the island’s most popular. The faultless combination of traditional style, modern facilities and committed engagement with The Diplomat Radisson Blu’s guests are the secret that keep this hotel in a leading position in the Gulf’s corporate and meeting segment,’ said Panagis


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EXPERIENCE M E E T I N G S The Diplomat Radisson Blu Hotel, Residence & Spa is well known for its hospitality and convenient location. With easy access to the traditional splendour of the old Bahrain and its exciting attractions. “Experience Meetings” is The Diplomat Radisson Blu new concept for meetings and events that harmonises the meeting essentials: breakout rooms, food and connectivity with service, satisfaction and sustainability. What makes us different and extradinary are our brand values that are designed to offer 100 % Guest Satisfaction. The Diplomat Radisson Blu has always been known for its impeccable Yes I Can ! service and it is this philosophy that led us to become the first hotel chain to offer Free high-speed Internet.

EXPERIENCE S U C C E S S BOOK NOW! bqt.diplomat@radissonblu.com T: 0097317525270


Hotel & Leisure News Mövenpick Hotel appoints new Operations Manager

Two Awards for Mövenpick Hotel

Mövenpick Hotel Bahrain has promoted Nizar El Lakkis as Operations Manager effective 15 January 2015. El Lakkis will assume increased responsibilities overlooking Food & Beverage, Rimal Spa and the security departments. Commenting on his latest promotion, El Lakkis said, “Being promoted to Operations Manager is a privilege that I don’t take lightly. I am thankful to Mövenpick Hotel & Resorts and Daniel Kaan (Hotel General Manager) for entrusting me with this role. I am excited to get started in my new role and also thankful to my culinary team that assisted me in the past two years. Leaving my family in Beirut, I now consider Mövenpick Hotel Bahrain my family, which I look forward to raising successfully and proudly along with Daniel Kaan and other colleagues.” Kaan responded, “As Mövenpick Hotel Bahrain starts a new year, I am confident that Nizar El Lakkis is the right person, with his business vision and ability to bring people together, to assist in leading the hotel forward.

Ritz Carlton offer limited time discount to BBBF Members

Nizar has a proven ability to create strategic clarity. His guest focus and dedication to the hotel have contributed hugely to the hotel’s achievements over the past years. Nizar has been part of the Mövenpick talent development programme, which is designed to retain and develop talents within the company. It is rewarding to see that the programme results in promotions like this.” El Lakkis began his career at Noga Hilton Geneva and moved back to his home country Lebanon where he joined the pre-opening team of Holiday Inn. He has held a wide range of leadership positions across the globe. Later in 2002, he started his journey with MHR at Mövenpick Hotel Beirut, Lebanon where he worked for eight years. Other special offers at The Ritz-Carlton during March include: A toast for two at Primavera where a couple can enjoy a four course setmenu including a complimentary two glasses of bubbles for BD45 net per couple. Every evening from 7 to 11. Tini Tuesdays where Ladies are invited to enjoy one complimentary martini from the menu prepared by their expert mixologists between 6m & 11pm.

BBBF Members can benefit from exclusive 15% savings on Seafood Nights at La Med by presenting their BBBF Membership Card. For advance reservations, please call 1758 6499 or visit ritzcarlton.com/bahrain. 48 Forum

Sushi Wednesday where for BD17 Sushi Chef Sonny showcases his creations including a Miso soup, a portion of Edamame Beans, a platter of Sushi (1 choice of 4), and unlimited house beverages and Kirin Ichiban draught beer until 11 p.m. Visit ritzcarlton.com/bahrain for more details of brunch & dinner listings.

As its environmental footprint gets ever lighter, Mövenpick Hotel Bahrain pulled its weight instead at The International Hotel Awards 2014, where it has won the five-star award as ‘Best Sustainable Hotel’ in two categories – for both Bahrain and the Arabia region. The International Hotel Awards committee and judging panel, chaired by Sir David Michels, describes the winners of these awards as those who have proven they are the best nationally or internationally amongst their peers. “Throughout the year, our colleagues evaluate hundreds of decisions to see if there are more sustainable alternatives to be used as part of co-existing in an environment with natural resources,” said General Manager Daniel Kaan. “The selection, investments and auditing of these projects are often challenging, but it is rewarding to see the results with awards like this and of course, the positive effects of our sustainable practices.” Mövenpick Hotel Bahrain is the first Green Globe certified five-star hotel in Bahrain, which helped in paving the path to winning these awards. The hotel follows pre-established core criteria and guidelines for sustainability that have been adapted regionally.


Citibank, N.A. Bahrain announces partnership with Royal Golf Club

British designers at work in Bahrain

The Country Club is pleased to announce that a new bar is being designed by a Yorkshire based British Above from left: Anastasios Fragkopoulos, Nadera Abuali, Harpreet Arora, Stephan Havrilla, Navneet Kampani, Hussain Al-Baluchi, and Noor Ghazwan.

company and is expected to open on Friday, the 1st of May 2015. The UK designer is also responsible for our other designs, such as Brenigan’s restaurant and bar, The Country Club and Henry’s Cafe Bar, Maguires Irish Pub, and Tiffany’s restaurant bar at Mansouri Mansions Hotel. The fittings are all sourced and made in the UK. A special opening reception will be held for all members of the BBBF when the venue is ready, we look forward to a timely opening.

Swiss-Belhotel Seef Bahrain opens new facilities

Citibank, N.A. has announced its partnership with the Royal Golf Club (RGC) located at Riffa Views, the island’s first luxury residential gated community through which added privileges will be provided to Citigold customers and Ultimate Credit Card customers along with Royal Golf Club Members. Under the partnership, Citigold and Ultimate Credit Card Members will be entitled to a 10% discount on food and enjoy a special rate of BD53 for the Championship Course. These offers can be availed by using Gold Debit Card or Ultimate credit card at the Club. In addition to this, Citibank’s clients that have the Ultimate Credit Card will avail a free round of Golf once a month throughout the year. Speaking during the partnership agreement signing, Mr. Navneet Kampani, Consumer Banking Head at Citibank Bahrain said “We are a unique global bank that brings the world’s most innovative financial products and solutions to Bahrain with a goal of delivering a remarkable experience to our customers. Serving the unique needs and aspirations of clients in our Citigold business with the right wealth management proposition and a global operating platform, is at the heart of our local strategy”. Mr. Stephan Havrilla, General Manager of RGC, welcomed the collaboration with Citibank. He added: “Citibank has been an important financial partner in establishing the RGC as the preferred venue in Bahrain for business and social connections. With Citibank’s extensive range of products & services, our members can experience a wide variety of personal banking needs of their choice without hassle. In addition, Citibank’s flexible payment terms with their Ultimate credit card has added convenience and benefit to the process of obtaining our exclusive Club membership”.

The Swiss-Belhotel has announced the opening of its new meeting facilities. For business delegates, the hotel offers up-to-date conference and meeting options with three meeting rooms, and a ballroom with a capacity of up to 160 guests. Meeting rooms are fully equipped state-of-the-art equipment making the hotel ideal for hosting exhibitions, seminars, conventions, weddings, gala receptions and product launch events. Facilities include: -State-of-the-art audio-visual equipment - LCD projector and portable screen - Wi-Fi internet access - Standard sound system with microphones - Equipment: notepad, pencil, candies and mineral water - Flip chart, white board and markers - Reception desks with flower arrangements Forum 49


Bahrain News

SSG busy in Bahrain and Saudi

Déjà vu for Arencon Security

Arencon Security have recently been awarded a contract by the Electricity & Water Authority for installation of a state-ofthe-art CCTV System at Riffa Power Station. The new IPbased high resolution system will replace the existing legacy system that was installed ten years ago and is now reaching the end of it’s useful life. The new system will allow enhanced surveillance of all areas presently covered as well as a number of additional locations within the Power Station that require extra protection. IP-based CCTV overcomes the limitations of traditional CCTV. Previous systems were based on broadcast TV standards developed in the 1960’s. IP-based CCTV provides much higher clarity pictures as well as simplifying transmission & recording by digitising images in the camera itself and then transporting them as IP data packets over an Ethernet network. “It’s déjà vu for us”, commented General Manager Richard Monkhouse, “as we also supplied the existing system that is now being replaced with the latest technology”.

Mike Orlov, BBBF member and Partner at SSG said: “It’s been a busy time for us at SSG in recent weeks, with projects and programmes running in both Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.” One example of these has been the programmes with Capital Club, Bahrain. Through January and February, over thirty employees of the Club were involved in a series of learning and development programmes focusing on excellence in service, communication and alignment. These workshops have been part of the Club’s continued commitment to individuals working for the Club and reaffirm the Club’s mission to excel at and continually improve the quality of the services offered to members and guests. Dina Haikel, General Manager Capital Club Bahrain, said: “We have been delighted with this series of coaching and training programs delivered by SteppingStone Global for the Capital Club team.” She added: “Everyone has been thoroughly engaged and we are looking forward to further work with SSG.” Jean Nicolai, SteppingStone Global (SSG) Founder and President, said: “We developed a customised programme for the staff at the Capital Club following in-depth analysis of the training needs of the employees at the Club, devised to deliver opportunities to build on what are already effective work practices, leading to further sustainable transformation within the organisation.” Below: SSG have also been active in the Eastern Province, with leadership, alignment and management workshops at SGB Dabal. This has involved over 40 of the company’s senior management, including members of the owning family, the board and senior management team. Emad Al Dabal, SGB Dabal President, said the work grabbed: “…all attendees attention and was kept focused.”

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On Reflection - Trowers & Hamlins The new year always brings with it a period of reflection on both a personal and professional level. For Trowers & Hamlins, 2014 was a fantastic year and we were delighted to see a definite increase in business activity in Bahrain.

the Government of Oman on a new conceptual approach to the delivery of affordable housing in Oman and the Government of Kuwait on the delivery of the largest housing PPP in the Middle East.

by Tom Reynolds

For us this meant legal advisory roles on some of the most notable transactions to have completed in Bahrain and the region in 2014, including, among others: • the first IPO and successful listing on the Bahrain Bourse in four years; the issue of multi-million dollar floating rate unsecured bonds; and a five-year revolving credit facility of more than half a billion dollars; • advising the Government of Bahrain (represented by the Ministry of Transportation) on the successful appointment of the new public bus operator for the country. The project forms a key part of the Government of Bahrain’s plans to overhaul Bahrain’s transport network and you will already have seen the bright new red buses touring the streets; and • as the leading housing firm among all firms that have a presence in the Middle East, continuing to advise the developer of the first PPP project for the procurement of social housing to be carried out in Bahrain and the Middle East, the Abu Dhabi Housing Authority on a legal review and analysis of the housing sector in the Emirate,

The legal market in Bahrain for 2015 looks to be a healthy one. This will Buthaina Amin undoubtedly lead to an increasing frequency with which businesses look to ensure that their legal and regulatory compliance position is adequate to match the needs of an increasingly regulated international business environment. 2014 saw significant additions to our real estate and corporate teams. Readers will recall that Sarah Bennett-Hughes joined our real estate team in the summer, and senior associate Mairéad Finlay returned from maternity leave at the end of the year. The corporate team has also welcomed back Buthaina Amin at the start of this year to our Bahrain based team following an internal relocation working in London for over 9 years. Buthaina is a Bahraini senior associate specialising in corporate acquisitions, Middle East regulatory, privatisation and restructuring projects. Buthaina also has significant experience in large scale international infrastructure development and energy projects. Recently, we are advising many landlords, tenants and real estate developers on the new laws in Bahrain addressing the landlord and tenant regime, real estate developments and stalled projects. We have prepared general knowledge briefings on a number of these areas and we would be happy to share them with any interested BBBF members. Please contact one of our team for further information.

Unisono Creates Brilliance for GFH and Red Bull with new Branding and Digital Works Unisono, one of the region’s most highly awarded creative consultancies, has recently completed Gulf Finance House’s (now ‘GFH’) strategic rebrand, launch and roll out. The brand is the product of a deep consultative process with GFH’s new management team, resulting in a dynamic and contemporary image, underpinned by an innovative brand strategy.

Liam Farrell, Unisono’s founding partner and director of branding, comments: “We believe in the brilliance of our clients. That’s why our work is focused on discovering the source of their brilliance so we can help them share

it in delightfully compelling ways. By helping our clients express their brilliance we help get people involved with their brands. This leads to amazing results and a huge return on investment.” The strategic framework created for GFH has eventuated in a bold and refreshing new visual identity which has since been applied to a full suite of communication tools including, a multi-platform website, corporate profile, advertising, and internal communication materials. Unisono also launched an innovative arts and culture digital initiative with Red Bull, the global brand leader in energy drinks. Unisono created an online solution to support the launch and growth of Red Bull’s new creative “shelter” in Bahrain’s Amwaj Islands – Malja.

The new site more accurately reflects the energy and dynamism of Malja, while the contemporary aesthetic matches Red Bull’s design ethos and promotes Malja’s events in a vibrant and engaging way. Unisono developed a responsive, mobile and tablet-friendly design helping the Malja team easily maintain content, create events and publish them to Malja’s growing audience further supporting the growth of arts and culture in Bahrain. Forum 51


Bahrain News

Independent Testing Facility on track

Phase 1 already provides onsite testing under AAMA/ASTM and CWCT standard provisions and phase 2 will provide increased testing of building materials and envelope systems with samples being tested to the full static and dynamic test standards within the Bahrain based UFDS laboratory and ‘onsite’ locations. The provision for many onsite tests and verification compliance investigation and forensics are currently available.

Bahrain based Façade Design & Services Co. WLL (FDS) have signed an agreement with United Enterprises, to fully operate their testing laboratory to provide full Independent Building Materials and System Testing at the under development Laboratory Centre in Bahrain as United Façade Design & Services (UFDS). Company Managing Director, Mr Peter Bustin confirmed "…it has been a long road reaching milestones along the way, but the efforts of our partner here in Bahrain and our professional in-house team are bringing this initial Phase 1 of the journey to fruition. However, Phase 2 of the journey in providing Bahrain with its first ‘independent testing facility’ of this

kind has already begun and is in fact speeding towards its ultimate goal." Façade Design & Services Co. WLL has approached the appropriate accreditation service providers, International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ilac), with its application for accreditation under ISO/IEC 17025:2010.

New partnership agreement to bring new products to the region

The laboratory testing is scheduled to be operational from March 2015 and fully operational providing static/dynamic weather and acoustic testing by June 2015. The Company also provides both ballistic and bomb blast mitigation testing in the UK and intends to extend the range of security glazing system testing at the Bahrain based UFDS test Centre.

A first for Bahrain

Enershield Air Barrier

BANZ Group BSC has signed long term partnership agreement with AG Environmental Solutions Ltd to bring the latest environmental technology to the Middle East. AG Environmental Solutions is a leading provider of innovative, world class environmental engineering solutions that deliver significant cost reduction benefits and operational efficiencies on multiple levels to clients across a range of industry sectors. BANZ & AG will introduce several new products to the region, including; 52 Forum

The Enershield Air Barrier is an innovative solution for several challenges encountered in many types of buildings. Air Barrier technology uses an accurate and controlled vertical downward flow of air to produce a “virtual” door and create up to a 90% seal over an opening. The airflow effectively separates the atmospheres on either side and reduces the transfer of temperature, dust, insects, fumes and odours. Enershield Air Barriers are designed to use untreated air and to recirculate existing facility air. Sterile-Aire High Energy Germicidal UVC Solutions UVC solutions for Biofilm destruction in HVAC and AC for improved system performance and for up to 99.9% reduction in bacteria, virus’ and mould. In-room and surface decontamination solutions also available. Sterile-Aire’s UVC emitters have the highest output levels of any UVC in the market today.

Internationally recognized for impeccable quality and stunning presentation; Designer Shaik, the Pride of Arabia, proudly announces the launch of the new Astro Duo Astrolabe of Moments in Time. The unveiling of this new collection is a first for the Middle East and reflects the inimitable style and panache of the Desert Prince. The Shaik uses his knowledge of the ancient Arabian Astrolabes, combined with state of the art technology. The Astro Duo collection features Dual time zone settings for the internationally minded horologist. The watches are composed of a polished solid stainless steel case with anti-reflective curved sapphire crystal glass, and features an underwater capability of 100m.


Al Rashid Group shows support for Bahrain Deaf Society As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility programme, Al Rashid Group – ARG - has adopted the cause of the Bahrain Deaf Society for the year to come. Throughout the year, Al Rashid Group will organise initiatives and activities to support the Society in their effort to facilitate and ease the life of people with special needs in the Kingdom. Apart from donation boxes available in all its current 66 shops throughout the country, a special donation has been organised last week to assist the Bahrain Deaf Society in settling into their new premises now located in Budayia: laptops and pieces of furniture were offered to Mr Mahdi Al Noaimi, Chairman of the Bahrain Deaf Society. Members of the society were

Above: Members of the Bahrain Deaf Society and Al Rashid Group Management

also invited for a children fun day out organised in Fun City, Oasis Muharraq. These initiatives will be followed by many others throughout the year to provide as much support as possible to the society.

Vikas Attri, Chief Operating Officer of Al Rashid Group commented “I genuinely believe in giving back to the society we operate in, and personally strive to ensure that Al Rashid Group acts as a good corporate citizen. Our commitment

as a Group goes beyond driving business, but actually involves playing a more active role in contributing towards the betterment of society, be it within the organisation, towards our stakeholders, various communities or the environment”

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Bahrain News

Insure Direct Brokers announces Strategic Partnership and Investment by JLT Insure Direct Brokers announces approval by the Central Bank of Bahrain to use the JLT name following the strategic partnership agreement with Jardine Lloyd Thompson (JLT). The strategic partnership adds considerable international and specialist expertise to Insure Direct’s capabilities and will enable Insure Direct to satisfy significant and growing demand from clients in sectors such as construction, infrastructure, telecoms, financial institutions, aviation, healthcare, employee benefits, energy and marine. Insure Direct has operations in Dubai, and Qatar as well as the Kingdom of Bahrain and these will be working closely with JLT’s local operation in the Dubai International Finance Centre (DIFC) as well as JLT operations elsewhere in the world. The agreement

will substantially increase Insure Direct’s insurance capabilities in the region as well as provide the potential to capitalise on larger wholesale, reinsurance and retrocession opportunities throughout the Middle East and North African Region. Insure Direct Brokers has been facilitating risk management solutions in Bahrain since 2008 as part of the Brokerage World Solutions group. The company offers the most appropriate risk management solutions to fit clients’ needs utilising sector specific expertise from the wider JLT network as required. Insure Direct Brokers can facilitate insurance to cater for a wide variety of risks including construction, financial risk, property risks, professional indemnity, employee benefits and political risks, as well as covering all aspects of insurance needs for the individual, such as

motor, property, medical and travel insurance. Clients are based here in Bahrain and throughout the GCC. In addition, Insure Direct also services an area stretching from Libya in the West through North Africa to Ethiopia, as well as Jordan; Iraq and Afghanistan.

Jardine Lloyd Thompson is one of the world’s largest providers of insurance being quoted on the London Stock Exchange and having offices in over 40 territories and over 9,000 employees. Supported by the JLT

New trainers at Studio RCT “Studio RCT is proud to announce the certification of 4 new in house trainers in BOSU, balance trainer for functional movement. Functional movement or also known as functional training (FT) is a methodology that is at the heart of BOSU workout systems and also at the core of our Studio RCT. The Functional Training methodology is focused to train general patterns of movement that are known to have purpose in life and not just specific to sport or to a gym environment. It is a more sophisticated level of training, which not only involves 54 Forum

physical movement, but also utilizes energy systems and the interaction that takes place between the mind and muscle while the body is in motion. Functional Training moves away from isolated training or single joint training and is more focused on the whole body and multiple joint movement encouraging various muscle groups to work together. It also teaches a participant to learn how to manage their strength, energy, and understand the centre of gravity, which is pinnacle to any form of movement to gain balance, stability, and be in the best form of alignment.

International Network, it offers risk management and employee benefit solutions in 135 countries.. JLT’s client proposition is built upon its deep specialist knowledge, client advocacy, tailored advice and service excellence. Steve Samson, General Manager of the Bahrain operation, said, “This partnership will allow us to serve our existing clients even better. There is an excellent cultural and commercial alignment between the two businesses. Since its launch, Insure Direct has implemented a market-sensitive business development strategy that delivers innovative, costeffective services to its client base. Like JLT, we have used a client-led approach to business, which has earned us enduring relationships with local and international insurers and a large base of clients.” movement training in the country and continue to provide classes and training options that are both unique and contemporary.

Above: L to R; Hulya, Noora, Areije, Zeynep & Roberta

Studio RCT has been offering BOSU classes since its establishment and now with its newly certified trainers we will be able to offer more classes at various timings. We pride ourselves at being pioneers in offering functional

Over the past year we have noticed a heightened interest in individuals wanting to enter the health and fitness industry with an increased demand for educational training for various certifications. For those interested in exploring the world of functional movement or getting exposed to new disciplines Studio RCT, the first functional movement studio in Bahrain is a great place to start.”


BBBF Business Networking lunches Pictures above in January with H.E. Isa Bin Abdulraham Al-Hammadi, Minister of Information Affairs. Below in February with Esam Hammad from Tamkeen.

Forum 55


Bahrain News

Keypoint delivers FATCA Seminar Keypoint has successfully conducted a seminar focused on FATCA reporting at the Intercontinental Regency Bahrain. The seminar was attended by 35 representatives from local, international and regional banks. Highlights of the seminar included analysis of the reporting requirements under FATCA, review of the steps for reporting using IDES - a web based reporting solution established by IRS and XML schema for FATCA reporting published by IRS. The seminar also covered FATCA reporting in IGA jurisdictions where the local competent authorities have issued guidelines on the reporting format. The session was designed for FATCA project team, banks, regulators IT solutions vendors. Keypoint also published a FATCA reporting handbook summarising reporting requirements for all participants which was well received and appreciated. For those not involved in the financial world, The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) is a United States federal law that requires United States persons, including individuals who live outside the United States, to report their financial accounts held outside of the United States, and requires foreign financial institutions to report to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) about their U.S. clients. It

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has been estimated that the U.S. Treasury loses as much as $100 billion annually to offshore tax non-compliance. Congress enacted FATCA to make it more difficult for U.S. taxpayers to conceal assets held in offshore accounts and shell corporations, and thus to recoup federal tax revenues. Under U.S. tax law, U.S. persons are generally required to report and pay taxes on income from all sources.


BAPCO selects SysProve Consulting to conduct IT Project Management Training Programme

Project management has become an essential competency for IT staff. Bapco recognised this need to upgrade the skills of 35 selected employees within the Information Technology (IT) department through an intensive IT Project Management course that

was designed and conducted by SysProve Consulting. The training programme was structured to address challenges specific to IT projects and based on the Project Management Institute’s Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®). The

programme was structured on PBL (Problem Based Learning), taking a number of case studies associated with IT projects and handson activities throughout the training programme. BAPCO’s selection of SysProve as the training

facilitator was based primarily on SysProve’s extensive IT project management consulting experience. SysProve has also assisted leading organisations in the Kingdom of Bahrain to set up and govern Project Management Offices (PMO).

Primedia International announces MoU with Bahrain Association of Banks Primedia International and Bahrain Association of Banks (BAB) have recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate more closely in providing comprehensive and up-to-date information to the banking and finance industry. One of the region’s leading media solutions providers, Primedia has been publishing the Arab Banking & Finance guide for more than 30 years across the GCC. Published annually, it provides detailed contact information of banks and banking institutions in the region, rankings, CI Ratings and more through print, online and mobile platforms.

“We are very excited to be collaborating with the Bahrain Association of Banks, an organisation that has been pivotal in enhancing Bahrain’s image as a financial hub in the region. “With this editorial tie-up, Primedia will not only provide users with complete data but industry insights as well,” said Primedia’s COO, Sohail Nawaz.

“The Bahrain Association of Banks is delighted to be working closely with Primedia to provide information and analysis about Bahrain’s vigorous banking sector to an ever wider audience. Both organisations have been working very hard over many

years to provide a global audience with information on this important part of the Kingdom’s economy and we are pleased to be able to add value to Primedia’s banking directories and online presence.” Robert Ainey, CEO, Bahrain Association of Banks.

The company’s second offering Banks in Bahrain has been a key information source for local and regional, finance professionals for more than 24 years. Last year Primedia introduced the first edition of Banking, Financial Services & Insurance directory in the UAE. Forum 57


Bahrain News

2Connect participates at the Bahrain Award Entrepreneurship 2015 2Connect, the reputable telecommunications company which was established 2004 and holds all relevant licenses for local and international operations, has participated in the “Bahrain Award Entrepreneurship” to be one of the nominated companies to win this respectable award . In line with the Kingdom of Bahrain national economic vision, the inaugural “Bahrain Award for Entrepreneurship” celebrates the achievements of Bahrain’s entrepreneurs and their socioeconomic role in spurring a private sector-driven economy. 2Connect’s have reached the Semi-finals stage of the competition which is an important part of the company’s positioning strategy that aims to promote 2Connect as Bahrain’s key provider of Telecom services. 2Connect’s presence in this prominent event allows the company to showcase its wide range of telecom solutions that serve all business sectors across all industries and sizes.

provide our business customers with the best-in-class telecom solutions in order to help them grow and optimize their businesses.”

2Connect Marketing Manager Mohamed Thamer stated, “Being a key player in the Telecom market providing a tailored made products and service to suit our customers everyday needs, we will remain focused on meeting our pledge to

2connect was recognized by Bahrain TRA (Telecommunication Regulatory Authority) on their Fixed Broadband Analysis Report (Q1 2014) as one of the providers of most stable Internet service in Bahrain for Milestone

GAC Bahrain: Taking the strain out of Saudi-bound shipments Complicated, timeconsuming customs regulations can present an obstacle for shippers sending goods to Saudi Arabia. But it doesn’t have to be that way, as GAC Bahrain’s Business Manager - Logistics, Shanaka Fernando, explains.

bonded warehouse facilities – a service which is not available in KSA. Those warehouses form an integral part of GAC’s global supply chain and facilities in Bahrain, which offer clients added value benefits that include: · Complementary 3PL activities such as picking, dividing, assembling, branding, labelling & repackaging the goods for final distribution;

By providing dedicated bonded storage in Bahrain, GAC offers a simpler solution which also enables shippers to hold their goods in transit duty-free until they are needed. Last year, the company handled 2,500 shipments from Bahrain to Saudi Arabia, mostly machinery, spare parts and equipment for the oil and gas sector.

They are both equipped with state-of-the-art racking, secure round-the-clock CCTV and in-house customs facilities.

GAC Bahrain has two bonded facilities: one at the the Global Logistics Services area at the Bahrain International Airport, and the other within the Bahrain Logistics Zone at the country’s main sea port.

“Our infrastructure offers both multi-national and local companies the advantage of a bonded area in Bahrain with easy access to Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province,” says Fernando. “By using

58 Forum

it, our customers enjoy ready access to markets in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as well as other Gulf Cooperation Countries, whilst enjoying the benefits of quality storage without having to pay import duty until the goods are actually needed on site.” GAC Bahrain is a market leader in the provision of

· Ability to re-export of goods with limited financial impact on additional handling fees as the imported goods imported can be directly re-exported. · Top security as facilities to which only authorised personal have access. For more about GAC Bahrain and how it can help deliver your strategy for Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, go to www.gac.com/bahrain


Bahrain Animal Rescue Centre run by Tony the Dogfather My wife Andrea and I started helping Tony Waters (aka the Dogfather) at his Animal R e s c u e Centre in Saar by Chris Gant a few months ago. We had noticed the frequent snippets in the Gulf News and felt, like so many other people I guess, what a great job Tony is doing in providing shelter and comfort for so many abused and unwanted animals in Bahrain. We have a dog ourselves and have always had a soft spot for animal welfare so we went along to the Centre in Saar one Friday morning to meet Tony and see what’s going on there. Finding the place is not easy but when you enter through the weathered green iron gate, you enter a completely different world. We had expected to see a ramshackle operation, and had heard rumors to that effect, but were really surprised at how clean and orderly Tony keeps the place (even beautiful flowers greet you at the entrance). The animals kept include mainly dogs and cats but there are also a few rabbits, a donkey, a goat and even some ducks. Each animal has its own story; at one extreme there are dogs rescued off the streets of Bahrain, badly battered and bruised, to the other end of the spectrum of pets that people

just didn’t want any more. It’s so sad and often tear jerking to hear the stories of how badly some people treat animals and at its heart one of the missions of the Centre is to educate people (especially youngsters) on animal welfare and to highlight the plight of these poor animals and atrocious behaviors by some people which still go on every day.

nickname of the Dogfather is so very apt. He has a bohemian lifestyle living at the Centre himself surrounded by his family of animals. He has managed to survive over the years by assembling a number of helpers and well-wishers who contribute their time on things like fund raising and doing odd jobs for the Centre. Also many people wander up the Centre and give him small financial donations or even bags of food. One or two local vets help out considerably when they can. Some local firms have even helped him build kennels and shelters for the animals over the years. He often hosts visits by children from local schools which is great to see but the underlying impression I formed is that he survives on a shoestring. His running costs are considerable. When you include electricity (the kennels need air conditioning in the summer), animal food, vet bills, staff costs, rent and just ongoing maintenance, it is clear that a more robust operation is needed to sustain the future of the Centre. So that’s been our recent focus.

When you mingle with the dogs and cats (I can’t honestly say I haven’t mingled too often with the goat or the donkey) at the Centre you are immediately struck by how friendly they are; despite their backgrounds and ill treatment. This has to be down to Tony and how he runs the show and the compassion he has for the animals. The Centre survives solely off donations by good hearted individuals – there are no corporate sponsorships or other means of financial support. Tony is an infectious and friendly guy who is so passionate about animal welfare his

We are looking at upgrading the website as a channel for raising funds. We are developing merchandising with Tony the Dogfather branding (btw Mary Birkby – the T-shirts, caps and mugs look great). We are trying to professionalise the running of the Centre so Tony can focus on what he does best – i.e. looking after the animals. We also need to increase the level of adoption – giving good homes to some of the animals as pets. But there is so much more we can do and we do need more help. Some people reading this may be thinking how can I get involved and help. Well I would say the best thing may be to go along to the Centre one Friday morning and just have a look for yourself. Chris can be contacted on: Mobile: 3841 0240 Forum 59


Do we really need it? There’s been a lot of talk this week about the impending launch of the Apple iwatch. Due to arrive in the stores on 24 th April the base Aluminium Sports model is expected to retail for about £299 but the gold watch limited edition is rumoured to be £13500. But why so much?

performance and the removal of grime and stuck-on messes.

when you approach, wave one more time on the sensor to lift the toilet seat; both lid and seat will close automatically 15 seconds after you walk away, so no more being lectured over coffee in the morning. So now you can keep your vows and your dignity till death do you part. Could this be a marriage saver?

starts to run cold! Worry no more. For a rather more reasonable £10.99 you could stick one of these waterproof clocks on the wall.

There are more than a dozen ways to interact with the watch, from receiving glanceable notifications, to feeling “taptic” feedback, to calling upon Siri, according to the developers’ WatchKit software. The 8GB of storage with some restrictions limit the amount of photos and music that can be stored directly on the smartwatch, but it’s still double the space of 4GB Android Wear watches, and most content streams from the iPhone. I wonder how long it will be before everyone has something similar on their wrist? From the hi-tech to the low tech. Do you love nice hot showers that last for a while? Sometimes the only way you realise you’ve been in for too long is when the water 60 Forum

If you prefer to think that a mop should still be in use, fear not, for Personal robots are getting technically more advanced and designed to assist in the home. Research in the US suggests that consumers would be willing to pay an average of $3750 for a personal robot to assist with basic tasks such as floor vacuuming.

Sticking with gadgets for the home, many of us are already (apparently)using the Scooba which takes the tedious task of scrubbing floors to a new level. According to the sales blurb the advanced system of software and sensors used in the world-renowned Roomba, Scooba 450 offers complete cleaning coverage of every section of your floor. iAdapt has been modified for wet floors to optimize the timing between recurrent passes on the floor, maximizing cleaning

And Finally

Not all of the new gadgets for the home are robotic though. Some, like the itouchless toilet seat feature “Multiple sensor controls for a great user experience” .

If you’re one of those people who simply must have the latest kitchen gadget, how about getting a Yolkr? New Zealand entrepreneur Hamish Dobbie has come up with a simple, novel and incredibly good-looking kitchen accessory for separating egg yolks from egg whites. But be careful where you buy it. It’s currently for sale on Amazon for various prices between £1.69 and £26.20 for what appears to be the same thing. So which of these will you not be able to live without?

And gents, the lid cover will be lifted touch-free

Is there anyone else out there who can rmember he days before th mobile phone revolution?


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BBBForum Spring 2015  

TRi annual publication from the Bahrain British Business Forum

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