MEF launched its EMEA chapter in Paris in November 2006 and the chapter championed vital areas of European policy, responding to EU consultations on key issues such as child safety and content online. In 2010 it opened an office in the Middle East supported by ooredoo Group and MEF Africa was launched in 2012 supported by Vodacom.
The EMEA Board has representatives from across Europe, Middle East and Africa – details below. It is the champion of MEF’s Mobile Money Initiative and takes an active role in the Global Consumer Trust Initiative.
MEF EMEA Board of Directors
Darren Foulds – MEF EMEA CHAIR
Managing Director for Pingit and Mobile Banking, Barclays Bank
Darren has over 14 years’ experience working in financial services, design and mobile services. As the Managing Director for Mobile Banking and Barclays Pingit, an award winning payments platform, Darren is responsible for the global development of these propositions; focused upon innovation, building partnerships and product development to deliver real value to consumers.
Darren is passionate about putting the customer at the heart of design and leveraging the increased engagement we see through mobile to bring new products and services to consumers. Of particular interest is how to extend these services to new markets and bring the benefits of simplified payments to both banked and unbanked customers.
Adia Sowho – MEF EMEA Vice Chair
Head, Digital Media – Etisalat Nigeria
Adia Sowho has worked within wireless telecommunications in various roles for the last 15 years. She started out as an engineer with United States Cellular, a CDMA operator in the US.
After obtaining an MBA from the J.L. Kellogg School of Management and after a stint as a Management Consultant at Deloitte Consulting, she returned home to Nigeria.
At Etisalat Nigeria, one of the fastest growing telcos, she was first, the Head of Strategy. Now, as the Head of Digital media, Adia oversees Value Added Service products, Mobile Content and Mobile Advertising.
James McNab – Basebone
Managing Director Africa & CCO
James is Managing Director at Basebone South Africa, and Chief Communications Officer at Basebone Group. For over 15 years, James has held various senior positions across the mobile technology sector covering aggregation, content, broadcast media, marketing and social media globally across B2B, B2C and D2C markets. He is an experienced marketer, Africa enthusiast & champion for enlightened self-regulation. As a long-standing liaison to numerous regulatory bodies covering 5 continents, James has been on the board of the South African VAS regulatory association, WASPA since 2013 and currently chairs the Code of Practice Working Group. He chaired the Communications Working Group from 2013 – 2015.
He is active on MEF’s Africa Steering Committee where he brings his experience and passion for the region to facilitate opportunities for mobile VAS providers in a region that is extremely complex from both a licensing & regulatory perspective. James joined MEF’s EMEA Board in 2015. In addition to this he also advises mobile service/content providers on operational and compliance matters and serves as a Non-Executive Director to several global interactive media players.
Mark Stannard – Boku
Mark has 15+ years’ experience in mobile, specializing in mobile content & payment services and has worked for MEF member companies since 2000. As Vice President for Boku, Mark is a leading member of the team that has brought the biggest digital brands to carrier billing – Facebook, Spotify, Sony PlayStation & Microsoft Windows’ 10 Store. Mark played a critical role in building Boku’s market leading carrier billing network of over 300 carriers and continues to have direct responsibility for Boku’s Global Carrier Partnerships.
Most recently Mark led the development and launch of Boku’s financially regulated carrier billing product in Europe. This groundbreaking development enables carrier billing to be used for non-digital products and services – physical goods and quasi-physical goods, substantially increasing the available market for carrier billing across the continent.
Previously, Mark held senior positions at Deutsche Telekom & Buongiorno-Vitaminic (now part of NTT-DOCOMO) where he managed BD & led marketing & licensing for music and digital entertainment services.
Robert Gerstmann – CLX Networks
Robert is the MD of Stockholm headquartered CLX Networks – a global leader in enterprise cloud communications, enabling enterprises to communicate with mobile customers, employees and things worldwide. The company also supplies over 70 mobile operators with infrastructure solutions. CLX has recently expanded its service portfolio to include mobile data for IoT/M2M services, and the company now enables global connectivity services for all three major mobile communication channels: voice, messaging and data.
Being part of the founding team of CLX Networks in 2008, Robert is an entrepreneur in the mobile and payments spaces with over 15 years of international experience having started his career at payment service provider Netgiro, now part of Digital River and later running the messaging business line at mBlox for six years. Fast growing start-ups and the high-tech industry, particularly where mobile meets the Internet is his work life passion.
Antos Stella – Content Connect Africa
An extraordinary presence in the music business for nearly 30 years, Antos is amongst the region’s most respected businesswomen. Her artist relations and ability to foster win-win- partnerships have enabled her to successfully bridge the gap between the media and mobile worlds.
In 2010, she became MD of CCA – then Blue Label Telecommunications, a listed company. By 2012, Antos had become majority shareholder, running the company to this day with passion and excellence.
Under her guidance, Content Connect Africa is one of South Africa’s leading content aggregators representing independent labels and artists throughout the Continent. CCA has also evolved into a 360 entertainment business opening up entities in 2015 in Nigeria, Ghana and Uganda and expanding its business to include content management, marketing, ticketing and the recently launched mobile TV services.
CCA was MEF’s first ever Africa based member and formed part of the inaugural MEF Africa Steering Committee in 2012/2013.
Graham Thomas – Deutsche Telekom UK
Graham brings 20+ years of experience having worked in international telco roles across the value chain; Deutsche Telekom (T-Mobile), Nokia Mobile Phones and mobile content start-ups. He has used this experience to pioneer the evolution of mobile internet portals to now fully converged internet experiences for DT. Graham is a Board Director of the centre in the UK.
When he was at Nokia he championed Games on mobile, setting up the unit which introduced the first games to market such as Snake.
Amine Melouk – InMobi
VP & GM, Brand Advertising, Europe
As InMobi’s VP & GM for Europe, I oversee the overall brand advertising business for the company in Europe including Sales, Strategic Partnerships, Creative Services and Operations. Prior to joining InMobi, I had the chance to hold various senior positions across the digital media and mobile ecosystem, and founded two companies, both in mobile, a start-up aimed at facilitating cross-platform application development, working directly with marketers and agencies as well as a consulting venture, advising several international clients on creating additional value through mobile-first strategies.
With an economics background and an MBA in Digital Marketing, and because pretty much all we do daily is hardly taught at school, I spend most of my spare time lecturing on online media and mobile marketing for the number #1 digital MBA program in France, and do mentor start-ups and young innovators on marketing-related challenges.
Roseline Ilori – Mtech Communications
Roseline ILORI is the CEO of MTech Communications Plc., the pioneer Mobile Value Added Service (MVAS) Provider in Nigeria. MTech commenced operations in Nigeria in 2001 at the inception of GSM in the country and as at December 2015; the company has extended its operations to other eleven Africa countries in Africa working with thirty-seven mobile operators across the globe. MTech has remained a company to reckon with as far as African content is concerned.
Roseline is a graduate of Computer Engineering and holds a MBA with specialization in Marketing. She current serves as a member of the Steering Board of WASPAN (Wireless Application Service Provider Association of Nigeria). Roseline brings her 11 years of experience in mobile aggregation, content development, mobile marketing, and digital content to MEF EMEA Board.
Tim Houlihan – Telefónica
Commercial Lead A2P Messaging
Based in Munich, Tim is a senior mobile executive specialising in the Mobile Messaging over the last 7+ years. He began his mobile career in in the A2P SMS aggregation (tyntec) before moving across to his current role within Telefónica. He is passionate about the opportunity enabled by messaging as a way to deliver engagement and value generation for businesses and customers alike.
At Telefónica, his current focus is on key areas of the business including fraud prevention, business continuity and the market development of SMS to IP propositions.
Telefónica has taken a pro-active role in MEF around the Messaging Initiative to build consumer trust and value in mobile for brands and customers.
Seval Üçler Yıldız – Turkcell
Head of Partnering & Innovation, Startups / Alliances
Seval leads Mobile & Fixed Services Partners, Alliances, Startups & Innovation partnerships for Turkcell Group Companies and its subsidiaries Life & KKTCell. Her responsibilities are managing a wide spectrum of revenue streams including VAS partners & alliances and management of “Turkcell Partner Network” that covers Business Partners, Innovation and Startups.She is also in charge of planning, developing and executing the Turkcell partners ecosystem strategies and their successful and seamless alignment across subsidiaries and business areas.
She has played a significant managerial role in Innovation Oriented Ecosystems, Business Partnerships and Channel Strategy Development, Design-to Product Process, Product and Project Management, Marketing, Sales and Instruction. She directs the catalysis program for the start-up companies run and managed by Turkcell.
Overall, Seval brings 15+ years of experience of commercial, partnering and technical experience across the mobile ecosystem including various positions in Ericsson & Sony Ericsson. Across her career, she had managed more than 200+ partnership and engaged with 500+ start-ups, NGOs, investors, entrepreneurs and more than 20.000 application developers local, regional and global levels in the Mobile Marketing, B2C, M2M, IoT, Fixed Broadband, Cloud, Messaging units.