MEF BOARD ELECTIONS 2021
Juan Francisco Di Nucci - Avatar World Group (AWG)
CEO & Founder
It would be an honour to represent Latin America on the MEF Board and take advantage of my experience and my personal and organizational relationships to make the region grow.
After such a hard year for all and while other industries froze, Covid was an unexpected catalyst and accelerator in ours. Now is the time for all to work together to build a bigger and better mobile future! And for this, at MEF we must geographically amplify our presence and impact.
As a member of the board, I will work to:
1. Position MEF as the most influential mobile ecosystem organization in the world
2. Increase in number and expand geographically our membership
3. Integrate Local and Global visions
4. Engage & Support Members to exponentially grow their business by mutual cooperation.
Juan, born and raised in Latin America, is co-founder and CEO of Avatar World Group (AWG). Since 2004 he has been developing technology to monetize digital content such as Cloud GamiWng, Aumented Reality, Video & Music OTT platforms and mobile marketing and advertising services.
He spent the last 18 years working on the development of the entrepreneurial, digital and mobile ecosystem of Latam, representing AWG as well as working alongside telecommunications regulators and creating and holding leadership positions in business chambers and organizations such as, Mobile Marketing Association (MMA), Mobile Monday, Argentinean Mobile Association, Young Presidents Organization (YPO), Entrepreneurs Organization (EO).
Stuart Neal - Boku Identity
Stuart joined the MEF Board during 2020 with a specific interest in advancing collaboration in identity programmes across the mobile ecosystem. He perceives MEF as the perfect vehicle to bring together the right people from within our industry in order to enable disruptive thinking and bring new technologies and solutions to the fore.
Stuart has a global perspective and believes that MEF should stretch its legs into more international territories, something he is passionate about in his day job. Boku connects to over 190 Mobile Network Operators around the world.
Stuart was formerly CFO at Boku which listed on the LSE (AIM) in 2017, he oversees the Finance Committee at MEF, ensuring that funds are effectively invested in new growth initiatives.
Julian Ranger - digi.me
Executive President & Founder
Julian has over 30 years experience in the networks, data and interoperability business, firstly in the military internet domain where he built his business STASYS to be the leader in military interoperability worldwide before selling to Lockheed Martin, and more recently with digi.me. Digi.me is a leader in the emerging personal data ecosystem, enabling individuals to build their own 100% private digital libraries of all their personal data to fully own and control its sharing with apps/businesses whilst allowing businesses to get Rich permissioned data otherwise unavailable.
Julian has been working closely as a Board member for the last 3 years advancing MEF’s core contribution to the personal data & identity space; enabling businesses to successfully take advantage of the transition to personal ownership of data. As part of this activity, Julian has been active in all aspects of the PD&I working group
If elected, Julian will focus on ensuring that MEF’s PD&I initiatives develops as the ‘doers group’ vis-à-vis other industry efforts - delivering value to members whilst addressing industry imperatives around research, interoperability and new use cases. He will support the Executive with introductions and business ideas to identify investment and partners to support these crucial activities.
David Lotfi - EVINA
CEO & Founder
For those who do not already know me, my name is David Lotfi. I am the CEO of Evina, the anti-fraud solution for mobile payment. I have access to a lot of data. Every day we protect 16 million transactions in more than 60 countries. We are praised by mobile network operators. We received the Best Anti-Fraud Solution award at the Global Carrier Billing Summit in 2020 and we have recently been awarded the Best Financial Clearing Solution by Juniper Research.
I would like to be a member of the MEF board for the following three reasons.
First, I believe it is critical to have an engineer on the MEF board who can help secure the mobile ecosystem by providing cybersecurity expertise and threat intelligence from all over the world.
Secondly, as a specialist of mobile monetization I will be keen to develop the use of Mobile Money, RCS, or Digital Identity, so that they reach their highest potential both in terms of revenue and safety.
Finally, as a cybersecurity provider for all mobile network operators for all payment gateways and for all content providers it’s my duty to ensure that all MEF members have the right tools to protect themselves and not accumulate a cybersecurity debt that could jeopardize their growth.
Virginie Debris - Global Message Services (GMS)
Chief Product Officer
Virginie Debris is the Chief Product Officer at Global Message Services, driving GMS internal product development while contributing her invaluable insights to MEF projects. She has been working in the mobile industry for 20 years, occupying various positions in top international companies, and was instrumental in the evolution of Sybase 365 as it became one of the leading messaging businesses in the world.
Her past roles have covered numerous areas of expertise from business development to international operations and product management. Virginie has honed this experience providing services for both operators and enterprises, gaining a profound appreciation of all aspects of the telecoms sphere in the process.
An active contributor to both the Securing A2P SMS Business Messaging white paper and SMS code of conduct, Virginie has sought to encourage the development and security of core mobile channels. She is also invested in fostering the next-gen ecosystem, sharing insights into RCS development and wholesale potential gathered from experience in GMS’ primary markets.
It is this experience that Virginie wants to bring to the MEF board, one inclusive of often underrepresented perspectives in the telco industry. Virginie and GMS’ experience in developing and emerging markets will help bring new insights into the particular challenges facing operators and enterprises in emerging regions – and demonstrate how these markets are responding to established challenges in new ways.
Jason Lunn - IMImobile
Hi Jason Lunn @ IMImobile here, what a great 2 years since joining MEF board.
I'm here to talk about my re-application for MEF Board, as it'd be great to have your support. I’ve been involved with MEF for over 5 years, founding member on the messaging programme and many activities to support our eco-system.
Recently, updating the ‘Fraud Framework’ and ‘Code of Conduct’ have been rewarding, as these are not only educational for us as members, but also helping improve the wider eco-system. Since launch of CoC v2 more organisations have signed up, which is great reflection on its benefits.
Regarding Smishing, evolution with more Merchants and citizens protected. Challenges for everyone involved, but impact and reduction of fraud compared to non-UK, prove we've done a brilliant job and everyone involved deserves a pat on the back. Moving forwards evolution in UK and internationally, where several opportunities being explored, so I will continue to help support Mike, Nikki & MEF team, to prove our industry can self-regulate and deliver benefits.
Finally, should I be re-elected to MEF Global board I’ll continue to be passionate in driving growth and success when "Every Interaction Matters". Hopefully see you all soon, Jason.
Mijo Soldin - Infobip
Director Operator Partnerships and Strategy
Since joining Infobip as head of telecom solutions team, Mijo has become a crucial link between product development and operator partnerships departments, driving operator engagement and delivering Infobip's solutions to mobile operator partners.
In his current role, he's bringing his extensive experience in one of the world's leading telco vendors, Croatia-based Ericsson Nikola Tesla, where in his career spanning 20 years he's risen steadily through the ranks in a number of technical and sales roles. Mijo holds a degree from the Zagreb Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing.
Infobip sees joining the MEF board as an opportunity to further contribute to the goals of MEF and share its experience and use cases in Mobile Identity, RCS, SMS and CPaaS services. Infobip is convinced that the collaboration within the ecosystem is crucial to the health of the entire industry and benefits all involved.
As a global company with strong enterprise and mobile operator client bases, Infobip has a unique insight into the two extremes of the mobile ecosystem and is actively involved in the development of new technologies and services.
MEF has the potential to establish itself as a key forum for the discussion as digital transformation is accelerating and we are hoping to contribute to that in 2021 and beyond.
Andrey Insarov - Intis Telecom
Founder & CEO
Joining MEF for me was all about bringing Intis Telecom into a wider, global community, both to learn from others and share our knowledge built up over a number of years in the Business Messaging domain. I appreciate it is early days for us as Intis Telecom has only just joined MEF but I lead by example and believe in taking decisive action at all times. Being elected to the Board of MEF would undoubtedly be a great honour but for me it is about far more than that. It would provide a great forum to help me shape our mobile ecosystem in what is proving to be a very challenging time for many.
Unlike many other mobile related trade organisations, MEF is member led and this is the main reason we joined. I ensure the Intis Team do not sit on the side simply discussing things. We get things done.
I started my business with a small bit of money I had saved up from my job as a system administrator back in Russia and it is great to be the CEO of a growing company in an exciting industry. Thank you for your consideration.
Andrew Bud CBE FREng - iProov
Founder & CEO
MEF today is even more relevant and exciting than it was when I helped found it in 2000. It’s the only trade association in our industry that brings together the whole value chain, instead of just representing one sectoral interest. That’s what makes it a forum rather than a phalanx, a force for collaboration, and for jointly creating value. The industry today is unrecognisable compared to that of 2000, or even of 2008, when I was first elected chairman.
That’s what makes the MEF so fascinating – we continuously evolve to meet the changing challenges, and our impact continuously grows. My contribution to the Board is threefold. Firstly, to provide some institutional vision, rooted in the past but absolutely focused on the future.
Secondly, to support the organisation’s expansion into the exciting new areas of personal data, personal identity and security, areas where I have sectoral expertise and commitment.
And thirdly, to lead the board in its governance roles, ensuring that MEF continues to earn the trust of you, the members, not just in what we do, but how we do it. I would be delighted to have once again your support to serve this unique, exciting and important organisation.
Waheed Adam - iTouch Messaging Services
Waheed Adam, an activist who fought discrimination in Apartheid South Africa, is also a serial entrepreneur who started his career at the age of 22. He lives by the motto “through tragedy comes opportunity” and launched his first company, today known as ‘the Prime Group’, in 1988. Today, the Group comprises businesses with a core focus on mobile.
In 2005, Waheed served as co-founder of iTouch Nigeria, one of the first international VAS companies to set up local presence. In the absence of a MEF Guide to doing business in Nigeria, many a hard lesson was learnt and turning the business into a success was no mean feat. In 2009, the Group also acquired the iTouch SA B2B business and has become a substantial player in the Messaging sector, in particular across Africa.
Since 2016, Waheed has been a strong champion for MEF within the various Messaging Initiatives and was on the Africa steer co-contributing to the market facilitation guide for Nigeria; Hosting MEF’s Messaging meetings during Africacom and introducing the MEF Executive to a number of operator prospects; Initiated the UK’s Sender ID registry concept for the South African market bringing MNO’s, Banks, Regulatory Bodies and Aggregators to the table, work still in progress; Formed a committee that plans to challenge the commercial models of international messaging hubs as set out by MNO’s. If elected, other than what is already mentioned above, Waheed will focus his efforts creating “MEF Africa” together with the executive team in order to prepare for what will be the fastest growing market in mobile as more and more people are connected each year.
Eddie DeCurtis - LivePerson
VP Strategic Accounts
With over 26 years of wireless experience to his role at LivePerson, mainly in new sales and business development. I have led Global market development efforts with wireless network operators and operator groups such as Ooredoo Group, Vodafone Group, Telefonica, SingTel, China Unicom, China Mobile, Hutchison, SK Telecom, and KDDI. Prior to LivePerson I was President of Tyntec Inc, where I was responsible for the global launch of the 3rd ICV in the USA, New Sales and Business Development. In addition, I have held senior leadership roles at Mosiak Solutions LLC, OnePhone LLC, Interop Technologies LLC, Iris Wireless LLC, VeriSign Inc. as well as key positions at GiantBear, @Mobile, and MetroMedia International.
For many years I have held leadership position within the industry organization to support and grow the messaging ecosystem. I have been a vocal advocate for all business large and small, all the while supporting the Wireless Carriers efforts in a safe and fair messaging business. I ask for your vote because you all know I will ask the tough question, I’m not afraid to call out the elephant in the room and always speak the truth. I will fight for what is right, I will always protect the playing field and I will never forget the importance of the Wireless Carrier in the ecosystem. Vote for my election to the MEF board and don’t forget like it’s always said, “Eddie you’re right”.
Nick Millward - mGage
As Vice President of Europe at mGage, Nick Millward currently oversees commercial, marketing and products. He is based in London, UK, and has a strong background within the digital and mobile eco-system.
With over 20 years’ experience in telecommunications, Nick has previously held several senior positions at Vodafone, EE, Hutchison Australia and the Daily Mail. He has also co-founded various small enterprises on the global stage. In 2020, Nick was appointed board member for the Association for Interactive Media and Micropayments (AIMM), in 2019 for his extensive expertise of mobile messaging.
Having recently launched the world’s first Mobile Payments within RCS messaging solution at mGage, Nick is passionate about improving the security around mobile transactions and the customer experience. By working closely with Global mobile network operators, technology providers (namely Google, Apple, Amazon etc) and the Phone-paid services authority (PSA), Nick has played a key role in delivering a secure payment solution that provides brand verification.
Looking ahead, Nick wants further enhancement of brand to consumer interaction through mobile messaging. With channels like RCS, Apple Business Chat and WhatsApp, Nick sees significant opportunities for enterprises to improve the customer experience & increase its revenues through mobile engagement.
Robert Gerstmann - Sinch
Chief Evangelist & Co-Founder
My name is Robert Gerstmann and I’m the Chief Evangelist & Co-Founder of Sinch, based at our HQ in Stockholm. As our Chief Evangelist I am a brand ambassador for Sinch and I spend a lot of time on ecosystem related questions, keeping track on where the market is going and what Sinch should do to continue to delight our customers. In founding and growing Sinch and previously working for Mblox, I have been in the mobile business communications space for 18 years.
I have been on the MEF board since 2018 and I previously served on the MEF EMEA. My main contribution has been in the Future of Messaging programme where I have been active in creating and updating the A2P SMS code of conduct and business SMS fraud framework, running webinars about data protection and business SMS, working closely with the UK MNOs and banks in launching the UK Sender ID Protection Registry and am part of our RCS initiatives.
Should I get elected I will continue the work at MEF to help make the mobile ecosystem thrive to the benefit of all our members and in particular using my long industry experience to contribute to the Future of Messaging programme.
Mitchell Cutmore - Telefónica
A2P Messaging Development LATAM
Mitchell Cutmore is part of Telefonica's global business messaging team supporting local markets maintain their A2P revenue growth. Originally from Birmingham, UK Mitch relocated to São Paulo in 2014 where he identified and implemented critical improvements to Vivo's antifraud strategy. With that in place, he then rolled out those best practices across several other Latin American markets based on those best practices. Since then his remit in messaging has expanded to review commercial modelling and the future of messaging - right now focused on RCS. Similar to work on fraud, this all relies on successful collaboration with operators, aggregators, technology providers and a diverse range of stakeholders internally.
MEF has proved an essential forum to keep pace with changing the ecosystem - whether sharing operator insights at events, swapping notes with the fraud working group or using the Fraud Framework to draw internal stakeholders to action. That said, Mitch aims to bring operator and Latin American perspectives to the board - with first-hand experience of how global initiatives often have to adapt to local cultural/regulatory factors. He'll continue to recommend operators mandate the Code of Conduct, adopt best practices against fraud and looks forward to seeking further engagement from operators and aggregators in the region.
Teni Stuffman - VAS2Nets Technologies
Co-Founder and Executive Director
Teni is the Executive Director of Business Development at VAS2Nets Technologies Limited with a demonstrated history of working in the telecommunications industry in Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon and other countries. She is an alumnus of Walden University, Oxford University Fintech school, Anglia Ruskin University (Lord Ashcroft Business school), Telecoms media academy, Federal University of Technology Akure. Adeola Odutola College Ogun state.
A passionate driver for VAS services, financial inclusion, mobile agriculture and maternal and child health care, Teni has worked with several stakeholders like GSMA and MEF.
She is a member of the Institute of Directors in Nigeria (IOD), A member of Society of the industrial and organizational psychologist (SIOP) and Global Organisation for Humanitarian Work Psychology (GOHWP)
Teni has been an active member of MEF for over 4years, worked with the DCB Fraud group, the Personal Data and Identity work group last year and the Mobile IoT Working group the year before. She represented the DCB Fraud Workgroup at the last Global Career Billing Summit 2020 and contributed on several other webinars during the year. Teni’s objective is to ensure there’s more collaboration and inclusion for Africa. Including accessing the right resources, getting the right partnership and enhancing sustainability in digital transformation.
Edwin Carvalho - Vonage
Senior Carrier Services Director
Edwin believes in a valuable Telecom industry which is innovative and collaborative and impacts everyone's life. As such, he has been a tireless advocate of MEF and its core mission to shape the future of the industry.
In his time as a MEF board member, Edwin has helped develop and launch the new Messaging Code of Conduct and has actively helped grow MEF’s membership through active participation in MEF’s Growth Committee and the Future of Messaging Programme.
Edwin’s ongoing vision for MEF consists of growing its influence through thought leadership and collaboration within the mobile and adjacent fields. Simultaneously, Edwin wishes to drive forward initiatives which are complementary to the Code of Conduct and the SenderID Protection Registry and that protect consumers as well as the value of the ecosystem.
Edwin is a Telecom expert with over a decade worth of experience across Messaging, Voice and Signalling in numerous commercial, technical, and operational roles and currently Edwin Vonage’s Senior Carrier Services Director and is responsible for ensuring that Vonage customers have access to the best global connectivity and for driving innovation with carriers to bring new solutions to market.