Content creators, advertising chiefs and internet pioneers take their place alongside broadcast technology innovators in the inaugural Digital Broadcast power list. The initial inductees will appear on these pages during the coming weeks.
The list is based on the opinions of our distinguished editorial team and is entirely subjective.
While we believe this is THE definitive list of regional industry powerbrokers, undoubtedly there will be those with different opinions. If you are one of these readers, we invite you to leave your feedback at the bottom of the page.
14. Dr Riyadh Najm
Assistant deputy minister for Engineering, Saudi Arabian Ministry of Culture & Information
Having started his career as an engineer at Saudi TV in 1980, Dr Riyadh Najm has worked in several key technical and media positions in radio and television at the Ministry of Culture & Information before becoming assistant deputy minister for Engineering at the MOCI.
The Ministry is rumoured to be planning to invest almost $1 billion in new broadcast technology over the coming years.
He has been one of the primary forces behind the silent technical revolution at Saudi TV and as president of the Arab States Broadcasting Union (ASBU) and chairperson of the HDTV Arab Group, he has also played a key role in encouraging Middle East broadcasters to adopt a universal HD standard in the region.
Dr Najm is also at the heart of the expansion of Saudi TV and the digitisation and restoration of the country’s extensive film archive.
13. Hosam El Sokkari
Head of BBC Arabic network
BBC Arabic’s stable of TV, radio and online products has matured steadily since the re-launch of its TV channel in March, 2008, and the end of a 12-year hiatus.
Hosam El Sokkari – the first Arab to steer any BBC Arabic service – is armed with an impressive arsenal of resources.
Arguably the most important of these is the BBC brand. It may have its critics but it remains the most trusted source of news for countless millions across the globe.
However, with great power comes responsibility. The BBC has a stringent editorial policy and a reputation for quality content that El Sokkari has been charged with protecting whilst developing and integrating BBC Arabic services on the internet, mobile phones and via its traditional broadcast platforms.