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.
12. Khalid Balkheyour
President and CEO, Arabsat
Originally founded by the Arab League of Nations to provide the region with adequate satellite capacity, Arabsat, led by president and CEO Khalid Balkheyour, has established itself as the frontrunner among satellite operators offering broadcasters a footprint in the Middle East. Balkheyour has guided the company to the halfway stage of an upgrade and expansion of its fleet that will see it launch a satellite every year to 2013.
Balkheyour has also developed a number of additional revenue streams for the company including its hosting of the MENOS content exchange network, VSAT services and GSM backhauling for mobile operators.
As the Middle East moves towards widespread adoption of HD channels, Balkheyour has ensured that broadcasters will not be held back by a shortage of available transponders.
By diversifying the company’s revenue streams, Balkheyour has ensured that the company stays at the head of the pack.
11. Humaid Rashid Sahoo
Despite being limited to the UAE and facing the challenge of the satellite-dominated marketplace, Etisalat’s cable service e-Vision has blossomed since launch. CEO Humaid Rashid Sahoo has developed what was a limited ‘plain vanilla’ cable TV service for 20,000 homes into a genuinely cutting-edge IPTV service with 340,000 subscribers.
This makes it the UAE’s number one pay TV service – by far the largest offered by any Middle East telco and the third most-subscribed pay TV service in the region.
E-Vision is now emerging as one of the most sophisticated IPTV platforms in the region offering users HD channels, video on demand and DVR capabilities.