Management Team

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Fiona McBride

Managing Director

Years of Experience: 35 years

Fiona’s tenure includes extensive expertise in top-tier organizations at rewarding roles. She began her journey as a graduate in Economics and Politics, and soon after pursued her ACCA. Her experience includes esteemed titles such as a CFO in European Supply Chain, Sales, and Marketing and Country CFO for Ireland, all within Kelloggs, where she worked for 12 years. She has also been the CFO for Pearson Vue and subsequently the CEO within a Pearson Education division that specializes in Vocational Education.

It is within this sector that her commitment towards the value and need for vocational training strengthened. She has dedicated her professional life towards the development of one’s Skills and Knowledge – key elements for a successful career of young people. While she is a seasoned practitioner of finance and the professional education space serves her passion perfectly, her commitment to support and deliver professional skills and training is her vocation.

Currently, Fiona is the Managing Director of Kaplan Professional ME, a role she took up in March 2020 following 4 years in Kaplan Professional UK and Managing Director of their UK Apprenticeship Business.

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Mohamed Qasem

Business Development Director

Years of Experience: 19 years

Mohamed Qasem has over 13 years of expertise managing clients in the KSA for programs related to professional qualifications, leadership, digital as well finance technical programs. Over his tenure, he has also worked closely with clients to analyze organization-wide sales policies, go to market strategies, develop strategic plans, and conduct market research with a focus on partnerships and product development.

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Mira Raley

Director of Learning - Leadership and Behavioural Development

Years of Experience: 17 years

Mira heads our leadership and behavioural development division and has over 15 years of expertise designing and delivering behavioural programs related to leadership, diversity and inclusion, graduate development, employee performance, team-building, nationalization and more. She also works closely with clients in analysing, designing and implementing L&D strategies and employee learning journeys.

With a dual nationality, Mira has been delivering courses in both English and Arabic for a range of industries in the region. She is a qualified assessor, executive coaching, and specialises in Kirkpatrick evaluation and measurement.

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Rahul Sonthalia CFA, CMA, AFM

Director of Learning - Finance and Business Skills

Years of Experience: 15 years

Rahul has more than 15 years of experience in the area of investment banking, equity research, macro-economic research and training. He has been teaching financial modelling and investment banking courses in UK, Singapore, and the MENA region 

He specializes in Financial Analysis, Equity valuation, Financial Modeling and exam prep trainings. His experience as a practitioner allows him to deliver practical and industry relevant courses. He has delivered advanced financial modelling related programs for Sovereign wealth funds and banks in the GCC and for large asset management companies in the UK and Singapore.  He was a guest speaker on “Best Practices in Financial Modeling” at Modeloff Global World Financial Modeling championship in London.

Rahul is an Economics graduate, a CFA Charterholder and a CMA. He also holds the AFM certification from the Financial Modeling Institute (FMI), CISI certificates for International Introduction to Securities & Investment and International Certificate in Wealth & Investment Management and Risk in Financial Services.

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Waleed Minhas, MSc, ACCA, CPA, MCSI, UAECA

Director of Learning - Advanced Designations

Years of Experience: 12 years

Waleed has over 10 years of training experience in the region, focusing on Financial Management and Management Accounting. 

He was the lead trainer at PricewaterhouseCoopers where he also managed professional qualifications, degree programs and Train the Trainer courses.

He brings 8+ years of industry experience in the UK and UAE where he has been involved in setting up and controlling finance functions of diverse businesses.

It was late 2015 when he switched to full time training and has since enjoyed exceptional pass rates. He has also trained many national, regional and global prizewinners.

Waleed’s training approach is built around adding value on courses and incorporating memory and exam techniques to help students ace their exams.

Trainers

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Mira Raley

Director of Learning - Leadership and Behavioural Development

Years of Experience: 17 years

Mira heads our leadership and behavioural development division and has over 15 years of expertise designing and delivering behavioural programs related to leadership, diversity and inclusion, graduate development, employee performance, team-building, nationalization and more. She also works closely with clients in analysing, designing and implementing L&D strategies and employee learning journeys.

With a dual nationality, Mira has been delivering courses in both English and Arabic for a range of industries in the region. She is a qualified assessor, executive coaching, and specialises in Kirkpatrick evaluation and measurement.

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Waleed Minhas, MSc, ACCA, CPA, MCSI, UAECA

Director of Learning - Advanced Designations

Years of Experience: 12 years

Waleed has over 10 years of training experience in the region, focusing on Financial Management and Management Accounting. 

He was the lead trainer at PricewaterhouseCoopers where he also managed professional qualifications, degree programs and Train the Trainer courses.

He brings 8+ years of industry experience in the UK and UAE where he has been involved in setting up and controlling finance functions of diverse businesses.

It was late 2015 when he switched to full time training and has since enjoyed exceptional pass rates. He has also trained many national, regional and global prizewinners.

Waleed’s training approach is built around adding value on courses and incorporating memory and exam techniques to help students ace their exams.

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Rahul Sonthalia CFA, CMA, AFM

Director of Learning - Finance and Business Skills

Years of Experience: 15 years

Rahul has more than 15 years of experience in the area of investment banking, equity research, macro-economic research and training. He has been teaching financial modelling and investment banking courses in UK, Singapore, and the MENA region 

He specializes in Financial Analysis, Equity valuation, Financial Modeling and exam prep trainings. His experience as a practitioner allows him to deliver practical and industry relevant courses. He has delivered advanced financial modelling related programs for Sovereign wealth funds and banks in the GCC and for large asset management companies in the UK and Singapore.  He was a guest speaker on “Best Practices in Financial Modeling” at Modeloff Global World Financial Modeling championship in London.

Rahul is an Economics graduate, a CFA Charterholder and a CMA. He also holds the AFM certification from the Financial Modeling Institute (FMI), CISI certificates for International Introduction to Securities & Investment and International Certificate in Wealth & Investment Management and Risk in Financial Services.

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Shanin Thomas, CFA

CFA Product Development Head - Abu Dhabi

Years of Experience: 13 years

Shanin has over 10 years of work experience in equity research, portfolio management, investment banking and financial modeling.

He was a partner at Esta Capital, a boutique investment research and advisory firm. Previously he worked in JPMorgan’s Investment Banking Division in Mumbai and New York offices covering North American banks and asset management companies.

He has over 6 years of experience in CFA training and corporate training on programs such as Financial modelling, finance for non-finance, business valuation, equity research, value investing, and derivatives.

He is a CFA charter holder and has also cleared the FRM exam.

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Bilal Ahmed CFA, CMA, ACCA

CFA Product Development Head - Dubai

Years of Experience: 14 years

Bilal has more than 10 years of corporate and training experience. He has worked as Head of Equity Research at Backers & Partners, a well reputed Financial Institution which deals in Stock Brokerage and Investment Management services. His area of responsibility included equity valuation and identification of suitable investments for various retail and institutional clients. 

He has more than 10 years of teaching experience. He has delivered training for the CIA, CMA, CFA and ACCA qualifications to corporates clients and in open programs. He is known for simplifying complex concepts and highly interactive style of training delivery.

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Hattem AlHajery, MBA, CMA

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 21 years

Hattem AlHajery is a finance and accounting professional and trainer, with over 13 years of corporate experience, mostly in multinational organizations. Over his tenure, Hattem has delivered virtual as well as in-person training programs and helped organizations optimise their finance department by integrating them into business operations. 

Some of the courses Hattem specialises in are:

  • Financial Accounting
  • Financial Statements Analysis
  • Cost Accounting
  • Planning, Budgeting, and Forecasting
  • Variance Analysis
  • CVP Analysis
  • Corporate Finance
  • Capital Budgeting
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Mohammad Al Nabulsieh, MBA, TOT

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 7 years

Mohammad is a certified trainer and lecturer who is creative, detail-oriented, efficient, innovative and organized with work experience as an accountant, financial assistant, lecturer and educational trainer. He possess strong analytical and problem solving skills, with the ability to make well thought out decisions, specialized in providing creative training sessions and productive lectures.

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Yasir Ali CFA, FRM, ACCA, CMA, ACMA, CGMA

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 18 years

Yasir has more than 18 years of teaching and training experience. His corporate experience is in the field of internal auditing and risk management in the banking sector. He has led internal audit engagements in a large bank with more than 1,000 branches. 

He has delivered trainings for cost & management accounting, financial management, taxation and business strategy papers of the ACCA, CMA and the CIMA qualifications.

He has taught at all three levels of the CFA Program for more than 10 years. He is an expert at simplifying complex topics and uses real world examples in delivering highly effective lectures.

He is an active member of various professional bodies and delivers CPD seminars for their members.

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Shiv Mehta, CFA, CMA

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 12 years

Shiv has over 11 years of work experience in equity research, private equity, investment banking, credit research and financial modeling.

He has worked in Equity Research at Deutsche Bank, covering the European TMT sector. Previously, he worked as an Investment Banking and Private Equity Associate at TresVista Financial Services. At TresVista, he also worked as Training Head, where he trained more than 500 Analysts, Associates and AVPs. 

He has over 9 years of experience in CFA and CMA training and corporate training on programs such as Financial modelling, finance for non-finance, business valuation. Previously he has taught CFA at corporates such as ADIA and ADNOC. 

He is a CFA charter holder and has also cleared the FRM exam.

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Sana Tariq, BSc, ACCA

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 9 years

Sana has over 3 years’ experience in teaching ACCA and CIMA with her expertise being in Cost and Financial Management. She has received professional tutor trainings held by the ACCA body.

She has worked as a financial analyst for leading banks at a corporate level. She tends to find several solutions to a problem, in order to satisfy every candidate as per their thinking process.

Sana has done her BSc honors in Applied Accounting through research and analysis project. and has even mentored other candidates for their thesis. She is a global high achiever in ACCA too.

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Amar Mehra, CIMA

Senior Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 23 years

Amar is an experienced trainer specialized in UK Tax teaching across all the UK accounting bodies such as ACCA, CIMA, and ICAEW for over 23 years. He has consistently ranked as a top tutor based on student feedback scores and has regularly achieved the highest pass rates in the country.

During his corporate tenure, he was appointed as the head of international business for FTC Kaplan after successfully managing the business restructuring process and leading the growth of top-line revenue from £500k to £7m which was responsible for the business being awarded the prestigious Queens award for enterprise in international trade.

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Hozefa Sehorewala

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 15 years

Hozefa is a financial trainer with experience of over 25 years in the finance, auditing, and accounting industry. Having started his career with reputed firms such as KPMG among several others, Hozefa went on to work as an independent trainer for certifications like the CIA and ACCA as well as on topics such as corporate finance, accounting, compliance with IFRS, etc

His industry experience includes having offered his services to landmark clients such as ADNOC, DEWA, Abu Dhabi Airport and the London School of Economics, etc. with his expertise in soft skills training, accounting and core ACCA subjects such as the AFR and AA.

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Kunal Doshi, CFA

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 15 years

Kunal is an experienced trainer specialized primarily in corporate finance and research analysis for over 15 years. He has been training for the CFA, CMA, FRM, CAIA, CA, Financial Modelling and various Customised Executive Programmes in the UAE as well as India.

During his corporate tenure, he worked at prestigious firms such as JPMorgan Chase overseeing financial and management data.

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Hamza Abdul Haq

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 14 years

Hamza is a trainer of Financial Reporting, Strategic Business Reporting, and Financial Accounting. He has extensive professional experience of having worked with Big 4 Audit firms and a 12+ years of teaching experience at all levels of Financial Reporting in various professional qualifications, coupled with a record of excellent performance at both professional and academic level has enabled him to become a professional trainer of Strategic Business Reporting. He has delivered 12,000+ hours of training to over 8,000 participants in Pakistan and has been actively involved in developing different educational and learning software.

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Taha Zia, ACA, FCCA, BSc

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 7 years

Taha is a lecturer since 2015, in the areas of economics, management accounting and business strategy. He is a fellow member of the ACCA since 2018 and holds the ICAEW membership too. He has also been a member of the ACCA marking team for a professional level exam and has produced several country and regional prize winners across modules. His prior work experience includes working as a business analyst for a data company and an investment analyst for a capital firm in the UAE.

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Fizzah Fatimah

Finance Trainer

Years of Experience: 1 year

Fizzah is a qualified accountant and holds an accounting degree and credentials in Artificial Intelligence. She is a specialized tutor for ACCA’s applied knowledge level and has expertise in exams within this module of the ACCA qualification. She has been an active member in ACCA student circles, supporting students in their development and career mentoring for many years.

She has also worked for a long time in a stakeholder engagement role for an internationally accredited NPO, working on diverse projects and liaising with key stakeholders. At Kaplan Professional ME, she also works within the Advanced Designations team closely on the operational improvement of multiple qualifications. She looks at areas within B2C/B2B projects, student recruitment, and employability programs and assists the product heads in improving their offering.

Client Relations

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Mohamed Qasem

Business Development Director

Years of Experience: 19 years

Mohamed Qasem has over 13 years of expertise managing clients in the KSA for programs related to professional qualifications, leadership, digital as well finance technical programs. Over his tenure, he has also worked closely with clients to analyze organization-wide sales policies, go to market strategies, develop strategic plans, and conduct market research with a focus on partnerships and product development.

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Ala’a Aldwairi

Business Development Manager - UAE

Years of Experience: 9 years

Ala’a has over than 9 years experience in driving business excellence with core competencies in strategic sales and marketing. as well as implementing high-end customer relationships programs. With core competencies in developing, implementing, and mentoring training programs. She was directly involved with launching new projects and opening new channels of opportunities.

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Ghada Nasr Abdelbaky

Business Development Manager - UAE

Years of Experience: 10 years

Ghada has 10 years of experience in the areas of training, business development and customer services. She had worked closely with many governments and private entities in the UAE handling training courses related to professional qualification, national development programs and leadership programs. Her customer excellence driven attitude is established in a telecommunication industry, moving to her current role.

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