Karim Michel Sabbagh, who is stepping down as CEO of satellite operator SES, will return to the United Arab Emirates in another CEO role. Abu Dhabi-based cybersecurity company DarkMatter announced Sabbagh’s hire and said he will join the company as CEO in April, splitting leadership responsibilities with founder Faisal Al Bannai.
“It is exciting for me to return to the vibrant Middle East region having spent a number of years away, and to lead one of only a handful of full-service cyber security firms present in the world today. I look forward to contributing to building a global cyber security powerhouse in arguably the most significant industry of our time,” said Sabbagh.
Sabbagh spent 4 years leading SES at its Luxembourg headquarters, having previously been with global consulting firm Booz & Co. in Dubai for over 15 years. He will be replaced by Steve Collar as CEO at SES, previously CEO of O3b Networks, a fully owned subsidiary of SES.
Faisal Al Bannai, the founder and MD of DarkMatter, said in a statement the appointment will help them expand their international presence. “As we have set our foothold in UAE, and begun to plan for regional and global expansion, the company will continue to evolve to support its vision, and build its competencies. We have attracted exceptional talent from inception, and with every addition, we have strengthened our ability to achieve our goals,” Al Bannai said.
“It has taken some time to find the right fit, and in Karim Sabbagh I believe we have found an outstanding professional who will make a great addition to DarkMatter,” he said.
DarkMatter was formed in 2015 and employs around 650 staff with research centres in Canada, Finland and China.