Curated Conversations

Curated Today

Curated Today is proud to present the Curated Conversations podcast series which is dedicated to making insightful, high-value, industry-focused information available to listeners on-the-go. Hosted by Rohma Theunissen, Curated Conversations is an extension of the Curated Today brand ethos, which explores the unique elements of the Middle Eastern retail industry and the impact that it has on a global scale. Our episodes feature some of the region’s most prominent movers and shakers as they share stories, experiences, and learnings that address real-life challenges and trending topics to help our audiences navigate all of the changes they face in the industry today. Real insights, real experts, real conversations. To learn more about Curated Conversations and Curated Today, visit www.curatedtoday.com

Welcome To Curated Conversations
Trailer 1 min 54 sec

All Episodes

With the advent of Meta, the social media and digital universe is poised for yet another major transformation. Rohma Theunissen caught up with Mike Khouri, Founder and Managing Director of Tactical, to talk about the evolution of social media, the position of influencers, the significance of the metaverse, the potential of NFT’s and what it takes to develop and maintain robust social and digital strategies amidst all these changes.Hosted by: Rohma Theunissen About Mike KhouriBio’s are serious and boring, Dubai-based Founder and Managing Director of Tactical, Mike Khouri, believes in being neither. He’s a champion of people who create kick-ass work for bold, global brands. Mike founded Tactical in 2013, a global social-first creative agency that works with the world's most prominent social media platforms. They are the first agency in the Middle East to partner with Snapchat and TikTok, platforms that are shaping the future of social and media. Other notable clients include Spotify, Amazon, Jumeirah Group, Etihad, PRG and IMG, to name a few. Tactical innovates at the speed of social, and have achieved this through launching Vertical, the region’s first studio exclusively dedicated to producing made-for-mobile content. In addition to this, Tactical launched ‘Prism’, proprietary technology that solves the problem of quality creative produced at scale for digital advertisers. Tactical also developed the first dedicated social AR team in the region, focused on delivering innovative mixed reality solutions to brands. Khouri’s philosophy is to deliver a best-in-class social experience by evolving with the audience, moving organically into the future with developing trends and tech innovations. Tactical’s approach is holistic, covering all bases with an in-house team of strategists, mixed reality experts, animators and social specialists. The team delivers award-winning social and media experiences that sit on the cusp of what's next in social and culture. A truly people-first organisation, Tactical celebrates diversity (the team consists of 17 nationalities and is 61% women) and a progressive work environment noticeable in their “Work That's Flex’ (WTF) and unlimited leave policies. Mike is a thought leader in the industry, regularly speaking on webinars about the future of social and mobile. He also works with the next generation of creatives and innovators, speaking at schools, universities and TEDxYouth. 

Nov 23

35 min 36 sec

With podcasts being pegged as one of the fasting growing digital mediums in the MENA markets, Judy Daghestani  catches up with Curated Conversations Host & Producer, Rohma Theunissen, to find out the key tactics for launching a podcast series that stands out.Hosted by: Judy DaghestaniAbout Rohma TheunissenA graduate of McGill University and Parsons School of Design, Rohma has amassed over a decade of experience in the international luxury fashion industry working for brands such as Carolina Herrera, Giorgio Armani, Marchesa, Harvey Nichols Dubai, Harper’s BAZAAR Arabia and NET-A-PORTER. With an avid passion for writing coupled with her love for fashion, beauty and wellness; Rohma is adept pinpointing the underlying societal and cultural themes that impact the industry on a regional and global scale.As host and producer of Curated Conversations, Rohma has launched the Middle East’s premier industry-focused podcast series which features prominent regional innovators on a bi-monthly basis. The series, which is an extension of digital regional insights platform Curated Today, explores pressing themes and industry topics that specifically address the evolving retail landscape within the MENA region.By profession, Rohma Theunissen is a strategic brand copywriting consultant, specializing in tactical, research-backed copy and content that fosters engagement and drives conversion. She is also a Founding Member of the acclaimed global copywriting community Write Minds, and contributing editor at Harper’s BAZAAR Arabia and Forbes Middle East.Follow Rohma: @rohmatheunissen

Nov 16

6 min 33 sec

It’s no secret that the podcast market is booming, with Apple Podcasts reporting a 100% increase in published podcast titles since 2019. Judy Daghestani sits down with Curated Conversations host, and this episode's guest, Rohma Theunissen to talk about the growing popularity of podcasts, looking at key facts and figures within the region, the unique appeal that this medium offers, the MENA listeners and just what it takes to launch, produce and host a successful, multi-season podcast series.Hosted by: Judy DaghestaniAbout Rohma TheunissenA graduate of McGill University and Parsons School of Design, Rohma has amassed over a decade of experience in the international luxury fashion industry working for brands such as Carolina Herrera, Giorgio Armani, Marchesa, Harvey Nichols Dubai, Harper’s BAZAAR Arabia and NET-A-PORTER. With an avid passion for writing coupled with her love for fashion, beauty and wellness; Rohma is adept pinpointing the underlying societal and cultural themes that impact the industry on a regional and global scale. As host and producer of Curated Conversations, Rohma has launched the Middle East’s premier industry-focused podcast series which features prominent regional innovators on a bi-monthly basis. The series, which is an extension of digital regional insights platform Curated Today, explores pressing themes and industry topics that specifically address the evolving retail landscape within the MENA region. By profession, Rohma Theunissen is a strategic brand copywriting consultant, specializing in tactical, research-backed copy and content that fosters engagement and drives conversion. She is also a Founding Member of the acclaimed global copywriting community Write Minds, and contributing editor at Harper’s BAZAAR Arabia and Forbes Middle East.Follow Rohma: @rohmatheunissen

Nov 9

24 min 52 sec

Since its inception just a few years ago, TikTok has changed the very manner in which we consume content online. Having just surpassed the one billion active monthly users mark, Rohma Theunissen caught up with TikTok’s Head of Retail & E-Commerce, Aref Yehia, to talk about the draw of short-form content, TikTok’s unique algorithm, the new definition of influence, and how brands can leverage the power of community commerce to boost awareness, engagement, conversions, and sales.Hosted by: Rohma Theunissen About Aref Yehia Aref Yehia is the Head of Retail and Ecommerce at TikTok Global Business Solutions in the METAP region. Leading a team across omnichannel retail and pure play e-commerce verticals, Aref is in charge of building and growing the TikTok business in the MENA region. A digital savvy and accomplished business leader, Aref brings over 15 years of multinational experience across Consumer Packaged Goods, having been part of Procter and Gamble (P&G) for 13 years, holding different brand building roles for the IMEA region and across Retail, from his journey as the Head of Marketing for Mall of the Emirates, at Majid Al Futtaim (MAF Properties).Aref has extensive experience leading cross-functional teams across geographies and building iconic brands across developing markets. He specialises in digital marketing and is equipped with a proven track record in brand and asset development, stakeholder management across complex organisation structures, digital marketing, strategic planning, digital media planning, business insights, data analytics and people management. Aref holds a an Executive MBA (TRIUM), ranked #2 globally - from the London School of Economics, New York University and HEC Paris, as well as an Executive Education in Digital Marketing from Harvard Business School and a Bachelor of Business Administration from the American University of Beirut. About TikTok  TikTok is the leading destination for short-form mobile video. Our mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy.  TikTok has global offices including Los Angeles, New York, London, Paris, Berlin, Dubai, Mumbai, Singapore, Jakarta, Seoul, and Tokyo. 

Oct 12

19 min 48 sec

When it comes to aspirational fine jewelry brands, Egyptian brand Azza Fahmy is nothing short of a global icon. With a legacy spanning across 50 years, the brand has consistently exported collections imbued with authentic Middle Eastern perspectives and exquisite craftsmanship. Rohma Theunissen caught up with the brand’s CEO & Partner Fatma Ghaly, to talk about Egypt’s luxury market, the contemporary consumer, their newly opened location at THAT Concept Store in Dubai, and what it’s like to steward her family’s business into the new normal. NOTE: This episode was recorded virtually as Rohma is in Dubai and Fatma is in Cairo – so there are a few glitches in sound but we think that makes the conversation even more authentic! Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Fatma Ghaly Fatma is a business development specialist with over seventeen years of experience. Having learned the rudiments of the family-owned enterprise at a very early age, Fatma’s vision for the brand has seen her strategically develop the Azza Fahmy business from a home-grown brand to an international luxury designer house employing over 200 people. A visionary leader, Fatma has driven the brand’s growth and success through expansion and cross-cultural collaborative projects and has enhanced values in local, regional, and international markets. Her strong involvement in multiple developmental and community projects has also won her entrepreneurial recognition by many regional and international organizations.A key player in shaping the jewelry design & making sector in Egypt, she has also been integral to the development of The Design Studio (DSAF) set up by her mother in 2013; independently funded, the Cairo based educational training hub for aspiring jewelry designers & students offers comprehensive curriculum-based courses. Alongside five Egyptian professionals of the Fashion, Design & Luxury industry, Fatma is a founding member of the first Egyptian Fashion and Design Council (EFDC) that provides the opportunity for designers to be competitive on an international level in terms of quality, skills and creativity. Fatma is a fellow of the Aspen Institute and is currently obtaining her Master’s degree in Luxury Management from Bocconi University in Milan and Essec University in Paris. About Azza Fahmy Jewelry Azza Fahmy Jewelry is an International luxury design house that brings different cultures and heritage to life through its unique contemporary designs. Designer Azza Fahmy set out in 1969 with great passion for design and desire to translate this passion into jewelry collections of her own. Today the Azza Fahmy brand has an exclusive international reputation with clients that include world leaders, royalty, celebrities, and jewelry connoisseurs worldwide. Listed as one of Egypt’s influential women, Designer Azza Fahmy and her team travel internationally as cultural ambassadors, and have held more than 200 exhibitions worldwide. Harvard University has witnessed Azza Fahmy’s latest participation as a key panelist in the ‘Women in Business’ Panel during their Arab Weekend in November 2012. 

Jun 2

28 min 31 sec

Given the surge in demand for online shopping as a result of the ongoing pandemic, e-commerce has been the savior for many brands and sectors during these unprecedented times. Rohma Theunissen sat down with Edward Sabbagh, VP of Growth & Managing Director for EMEA of leading global luxury platform FARFETCH, to ask him key tactics brands and organizations can employ to grow their e-commerce business in 2021, and beyond. NOTE: This episode was recorded virtually to uphold social distancing etiquette – so there are a few glitches in sound but we think that makes the conversation even more authentic!Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Edward SabbaghAs FARFETCH’s VP of Growth, Edward leads the overall development of the Growth function and strategic opportunities across all global markets. Additionally, Edward is the Managing Director for FARFETCH in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), working alongside talented and crossfunctional teams across offices in London, Dubai and Moscow. Edward joined FARFETCH in 2017 to set up and lead the business expansion across Middle Eastern markets. He oversaw the launch of FARFETCH's regional website, app and operations, along with opening the first regional office in Dubai.About FARFETCHFARFETCH Limited is the leading global platform for the luxury fashion industry. Our mission is to be the global platform for luxury fashion, connecting creators, curators and consumers. Founded in 2007 by José Neves for the love of fashion, and launched in 2008, FARFETCH began as an e-commerce marketplace for luxury boutiques around the world. Today the FARFETCH Marketplace connects customers in over 190 countries and territories with items from more than 50 countries and over 1,300 of the world’s best brands, boutiques and department stores, delivering a truly unique shopping experience and access to the most extensive selection of luxury on a single platform.FARFETCH’s additional businesses include Browns and Stadium Goods, which offer luxury products to consumers, and New Guards Group, a platform for the development of global fashion brands. FARFETCH offers its broad range of consumer-facing channels and enterprise level solutions to the luxury industry under its Luxury New Retail initiative. The Luxury New Retail initiative also encompasses FARFETCH Platform Solutions, which services enterprise clients with e-commerce and technology capabilities, and innovations such as Store of the Future, its connected retail solution.

May 26

8 min 33 sec

When it comes to luxury e-commerce, FARFETCH is the undisputed industry disruptor. Driven by an unparalleled sense of innovation, the platform has played a pivotal role in the survival and growth of luxury retail, paving the way with sustainable models and new technologies that facilitate the digitization of the luxury shopping experience. Rohma Theunissen caught up with the force behind the FARFETCH brand in the Middle East, Edward Sabbagh, VP of Growth & Managing Director of EMEA, to talk about the evolution of the commerce, the pandemic, the potential of the regional e-commerce market and why seamless omnichannel retail experiences are essential for the next generation of luxury consumers. NOTE: This episode was recorded virtually to uphold social distancing etiquette – so there are a few glitches in sound but we think that makes the conversation even more authentic!Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Edward SabbaghAs FARFETCH’s VP of Growth, Edward leads the overall development of the Growth function and strategic opportunities across all global markets. Additionally, Edward is the Managing Director for FARFETCH in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), working alongside talented and crossfunctional teams across offices in London, Dubai and Moscow. Edward joined FARFETCH in 2017 to set up and lead the business expansion across Middle Eastern markets. He oversaw the launch of FARFETCH's regional website, app and operations, along with opening the first regional office in Dubai. About FARFETCHFARFETCH Limited is the leading global platform for the luxury fashion industry. Our mission is to be the global platform for luxury fashion, connecting creators, curators and consumers. Founded in 2007 by José Neves for the love of fashion, and launched in 2008, FARFETCH began as an e-commerce marketplace for luxury boutiques around the world. Today the FARFETCH Marketplace connects customers in over 190 countries and territories with items from more than 50 countries and over 1,300 of the world’s best brands, boutiques and department stores, delivering a truly unique shopping experience and access to the most extensive selection of luxury on a single platform.FARFETCH’s additional businesses include Browns and Stadium Goods, which offer luxury products to consumers, and New Guards Group, a platform for the development of global fashion brands. FARFETCH offers its broad range of consumer-facing channels and enterprise level solutions to the luxury industry under its Luxury New Retail initiative. The Luxury New Retail initiative also encompasses FARFETCH Platform Solutions, which services enterprise clients with e-commerce and technology capabilities, and innovations such as Store of the Future, its connected retail solution.

May 8

28 min 52 sec

In this episode of #bitesizedconversations, Rohma Theunissen  catches up with one of the most respected leaders within the Middle Eastern retail industry, Rania Masri El Khatib , to ask her the 5 qualities leaders need to have to guide businesses through these tumultuous times.Hosted by: Rohma Theunissen About Rania Masri El KhatibRania Masri El Khatib is a senior retail executive with over 20 years of experience in the sector, starting from the shop sales floor.Passionate about the future of fashion and the evolving retail landscape, Rania served as the Chief Transformation Officer for Chalhoub Group, where she was responsible for spearheading the company’s growth in a more multichannel environment while honoring the group’s heritage as the leading luxury retailer in the Middle East. Rania’s team, called SHIFT, supported the Group in reaching its vision to become a hybrid retailer bringing luxury to the fingertips of customers everywhere.Prior to leading the group’s transformation team, Rania was responsible for developing and launching Level Shoes, a pioneering retail concept dedicated to the world of footwear. She spent five years as the General Manager of the 96,000 square foot concept store which was recognized globally as revolutionary, garnering accolades like “Retailer of the Year” just two years after launching.Her deep love of luxury is not only a result of developing new concepts but also stems from growing global names in new markets. As the head of Ralph Lauren’s Middle East operations for five years, Rania worked on elevating the brand’s strategy within the region and lead its expansion across 10 countries.Rania first moved to Dubai in 2002 to work with Azadea Group, managing regional development for Bershka, an Inditex Brand in the Middle East. Born in Lebanon and raised between Saudi Arabia and Canada, she loves to travel and enjoys learning new languages.She started her career in Montreal after completing her luxury fashion marketing studies there. A mother of two young girls, Rania is a firm believer in mentoring and empowering women to be leaders across the industry and beyond.

May 2

3 min

Considered one of the most powerful players in the Middle Eastern retail industry, Rania Masri El Khatib spearheaded the omnichannel transformation of one of the region’s biggest luxury retail businesses Chalhoub Group. Rohma Theunissen caught up with the former CTO to talk about the evolution of the industry, its work culture, and the leadership required to empower employees to drive organizational success now and in the future.Hosted by: Rohma Theunissen About Rania Masri El KhatibRania Masri El Khatib is a senior retail executive with over 20 years of experience in the sector, starting from the shop sales floor.Passionate about the future of fashion and the evolving retail landscape, Rania served as the Chief Transformation Officer for Chalhoub Group, where she was responsible for spearheading the company’s growth in a more multichannel environment while honoring the group’s heritage as the leading luxury retailer in the Middle East. Rania’s team, called SHIFT, supported the Group in reaching its vision to become a hybrid retailer bringing luxury to the fingertips of customers everywhere.Prior to leading the group’s transformation team, Rania was responsible for developing and launching Level Shoes, a pioneering retail concept dedicated to the world of footwear. She spent five years as the General Manager of the 96,000 square foot concept store which was recognized globally as revolutionary, garnering accolades like “Retailer of the Year” just two years after launching.Her deep love of luxury is not only a result of developing new concepts but also stems from growing global names in new markets. As the head of Ralph Lauren’s Middle East operations for five years, Rania worked on elevating the brand’s strategy within the region and lead its expansion across 10 countries.Rania first moved to Dubai in 2002 to work with Azadea Group, managing regional development for Bershka, an Inditex Brand in the Middle East. Born in Lebanon and raised between Saudi Arabia and Canada, she loves to travel and enjoys learning new languages.She started her career in Montreal after completing her luxury fashion marketing studies there. A mother of two young girls, Rania is a firm believer in mentoring and empowering women to be leaders across the industry and beyond.

Apr 24

51 min 8 sec

On the heels of the launch of Axel Arigato’s new Dubai store at Level Shoes, Rohma Theunissen caught up with the contemporary Swedish label’s co-founders, Max Svärdh and Albin Johansson to find out what it takes for contemporary brands to succeed in 2021.Hosted by: Rohma Theunissen About Axel Arigato Underground Swedish brand Axel Arigato headed by Albin Johansson and Max Svärdh made its place as a renowned footwear label in summer 2014. The brand follows a unique business model that prioritises innovation with the promise of creating a new shoe design every week. Establishing strong relationships through social media, the label has established itself as a luxury streetwear brand with a functional take. About Level Shoes Level Shoes is a globally recognised retail concept and destination dedicated to the world of designer footwear and accessories. The store offers a wide range of unique services; from shoe experts to foot therapies, culinary delights, a dedicated concierge service as well as a regional online shopping platform. The curated space is divided into 40 designer boutiques and five multibrand areas each designed with its own bespoke personality: Women’s Designer, Women’s Accessories, Women’s Contemporary, Men’s Designer, Men’s Accessories, Trends and Kids. 

Apr 6

5 min 36 sec

“We thought that [a DTC model] was how we could make the biggest impact at that time. We wanted to own the relationship with the customers but also wanted to work very quickly.” When it comes to contemporary fashion, Swedish label Axel Arigato is one of the segment’s undisputed leaders. Given the growth of the contemporary luxury market in recent years, Rohma Theunissen caught up with Axel Arigato’s founders Max Svärdh and Albin Johansson to talk about their success, the DTC model, the contemporary consumer and why opening a permanent store at Level Shoes in Dubai furthers their disruptive agenda. Hosted by: Rohma Theunissen About Axel ArigatoUnderground Swedish brand Axel Arigato headed by Albin Johansson and Max Svärdh made its place as a renowned footwear label in summer 2014. The brand follows a unique business model that prioritises innovation with the promise of creating a new shoe design every week. Establishing strong relationships through social media, the label has established itself as a luxury streetwear brand with a functional take.About Level Shoes Level Shoes is a globally recognised retail concept and destination dedicated to the world of designer footwear and accessories. The store offers a wide range of unique services; from shoe experts to foot therapies, culinary delights, a dedicated concierge service as well as a regional online shopping platform. The curated space is divided into 40 designer boutiques and five multibrand areas each designed with its own bespoke personality: Women’s Designer, Women’s Accessories, Women’s Contemporary, Men’s Designer, Men’s Accessories, Trends and Kids. 

Mar 30

24 min

8 months after the tragic Beirut blast, Lebanon is facing some of the toughest times in its history. Rohma Theunissen caught up with Roni Helou to find out what people outside of the country can do to help. To donate to Beit El Baraka, click here.Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Roni Helou Born in Lebanon in 1992, Roni Helou is a conscious ready-to-wear designer based in Beirut. In 2016 upon his graduation from Creative Space Beirut, a progressive fashion school that offers free design education, Roni showcased his collections at Fashion Forward Dubai for two seasons under the patronage of Rabih Kayrouz and the Starch Foundation. In 2017 Roni was awarded the Boghossian Foundation Fashion Prize, offering him a residency at Villa Empain in Brussels. His previous works were displayed at Les Nouveaux Créateurs in Paris as part of Exposition Mode émergente du monde arabe, co-curated by Institut du Monde Arabe. More recently, Roni was named RTW winner of the first Fashion Trust Arabia (FTA) edition launched in 2019. Furthermore, the brand's SS20 and RH’20/21 collections were exhibited respectively at Paris and Milan Fashion Weeks. Sustainability, free education, human and animal rights are at the heart of the RONI HELOU brand. Roni works to uphold these values in everything he does, from sampling to production and everything in between. The Roni Helou brand has been featured in prominent international publications, such as The New York Times, Vogue US, British Vogue, Vogue Arabia, Vogue Italia, Harper’s Bazaar Arabia, Elle India, WWD, The Business of Fashion, Wallpaper, DAZE, i-D and HUNGER TV. 

Mar 23

3 min 53 sec

"People I know, who used to be able to afford to go out on a daily basis [in Lebanon], are now unemployed. They don’t leave their houses because they don’t have enough money to put gas in their tanks." 8 months have passed since the tragic blast that shook the very heart of Beirut, and yet although Lebanon is no longer front page news, the country is facing some of the most difficult times in the country’s history. Rohma Theunissen caught up with Roni Helou, the acclaimed Lebanese designer who spearheaded the United For Lebanese Creatives crowdfunding initiative in August 2020, to talk about the extent of the country’s triple crisis, how it is impacting the people who live there on a daily basis and why talking about Lebanon is essential.Hosted by: Rohma Theunissen About Roni HelouBorn in Lebanon in 1992, Roni Helou is a conscious ready-to-wear designer based in Beirut.In 2016 upon his graduation from Creative Space Beirut, progressive fashion school that offers free design education, Roni showcased his collections at Fashion Forward Dubai for two seasons under the patronage of Rabih Kayrouz and the Starch Foundation. In 2017 Roni was awarded the Boghossian Foundation Fashion Prize, offering him a residency at Villa Empain in Brussels. His previous works were displayed at Les Nouveaux Créateurs in Paris as part of Exposition Mode émergente du monde arabe, co-curated by Institut du Monde Arabe.More recently, Roni was named RTW winner of the first Fashion Trust Arabia (FTA) edition launched in 2019. Furthermore, the brand's SS20 and RH’20/21 collections were exhibited respectively at Paris and Milan Fashion Weeks. Sustainability, free education, human and animal rights are at the heart of the RONI HELOU brand. Roni works to uphold these values in everything he does, from sampling to production and everything in between.The Roni Helou brand has been featured in prominent international publications, such as The New York Times, Vogue US, British Vogue, Vogue Arabia, Vogue Italia, Harper’s Bazaar Arabia, Elle India, WWD, The Business of Fashion, Wallpaper, DAZE, i-D and HUNGER TV.

Mar 16

26 min 22 sec

As the GCC’s largest market opens its doors to the world, Rohma Theunissen caught up with Niche Arabia Founder, Marriam Mossalli to ask her the 5 things brands looking to enter the KSA market need to know.  Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Marriam Mossalli Marriam Mossalli is the founder of Niche Arabia, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's premier luxury consulting agency, where she offers strategic planning, communication services, and marketing implementation for international brands entering or reestablishing their position in the Saudi market. A self-made female entrepreneur, she began her career in the fashion industry as a lifestyle editor and journalist, developing a global network of contacts that has allowed her, as a publicist and branding guru, to build a portfolio of blue-chip luxury companies, among them Mercedes-Benz, Fendi, Piaget, Harvey Nichols, and Christie’s. Marriam, who has the unique distinction of being the only Saudi national on the prestigious Business Fashion 500 list, recently published Under The Abaya: Street Style from Saudi Arabia, a photography book that explores the progressive attire of the contemporary Saudi woman.  About Niche Arabia The premier luxury communications agency since its inception in 2011. Through a multifaceted approach to publicity, marketing, branding, and consultancy, Niche Arabia generates creative initiatives that position its clients for optimal market penetration and sales in key markets throughout the Middle East. Featuring a portfolio of esteemed international brands from various industries such as automotives and FMCGs, to beauty and fashion, Niche Arabia has conceived groundbreaking events, media campaigns, and activations across the GCC, establishing itself as an invaluable resource for companies seeking to engage the Khaleeji consumer. Clients achieve strategically placed media coverage and publicity in collaboration with a world-class team of multilingual publicists, marketers, branding experts, and content creators, who drive business development through innovation while maintaining key brand positioning.  

Mar 7

4 min 20 sec

“This is the first time we are opening our doors to allow people in but also for us to export our culture to the rest of the world. I think it’s a really exciting time.”With Saudi Vision 2030 firmly underway, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is undergoing an unprecedented metamorphosis. Rohma Theunissen caught up with Marriam Mossalli, Founder of the Kingdom’s premier luxury brand consultancy Niche Arabia, to talk about the evolution and changes taking place, the Saudi consumer and what it takes to succeed in one of the world’s fastest-growing emerging markets. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Marriam MossalliMarriam Mossalli is the founder of Niche Arabia, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's premier luxury consulting agency, where she offers strategic planning, communication services, and marketing implementation for international brands entering or reestablishing their position in the Saudi market. A self-made female entrepreneur, she began her career in the fashion industry as a lifestyle editor and journalist, developing a global network of contacts that has allowed her, as a publicist and branding guru, to build a portfolio of blue-chip luxury companies, among them Mercedes-Benz, Fendi, Piaget, Harvey Nichols, and Christie’s. Marriam, who has the unique distinction of being the only Saudi national on the prestigious Business Fashion 500 list, recently published Under The Abaya: Street Style from Saudi Arabia, a photography book that explores the progressive attire of the contemporary Saudi woman.About Niche ArabiaThe premier luxury communications agency since its inception in 2011. Through a multifaceted approach to publicity, marketing, branding, and consultancy, Niche Arabia generates creative initiatives that position its clients for optimal market penetration and sales in key markets throughout the Middle East.Featuring a portfolio of esteemed international brands from various industries such as automotives and FMCGs, to beauty and fashion, Niche Arabia has conceived groundbreaking events, media campaigns, and activations across the GCC, establishing itself as an invaluable resource for companies seeking to engage the Khaleeji consumer. Clients achieve strategically placed media coverage and publicity in collaboration with a world-class team of multilingual publicists, marketers, branding experts, and content creators, who drive business development through innovation while maintaining key brand positioning.

Mar 3

31 min 17 sec

On the Sole DXB’s 10-year anniversary, Rohma Theunissen asks Sole Partner, Raj Malhotra to share 5 things that he learned from his journey with Sole DXB that he wishes he knew when he was starting out. #BiteSizedConversationsHosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Raj Malhotra Rajat moved to Dubai after having lived in Los Angeles, Kuwait, Italy, India, and New York. Having graduated from NYU in 2002, Rajat took a year-long sabbatical working on teaching at Project Renewal in NYC. In 2004, he moved to Dubai to establish a telecom and security business that grew to cover 11 countries from Vietnam to Algeria, of which he served as CEO MEA for 8 years. Rajat had also partnered with Sunny Rahbar, co-founder of the Third Line Gallery, on a collaborative project that had seen them host multiple curated exhibitions with NYC gallery, On Stellar Rays. In 2013, Rajat came on board as the fourth partner at Sole. More recently, Rajat built a private recording studio in Dubai, using it as a space for artists to collaborate. About Sole Founded in 2010, Sole is a leading platform for connecting communities through creativity and culture. The grassroots organization has built a rapidly growing community through its annual Sole DXB cultural festival, which saw over 36,000 people from more than 60 countries attend the eight annual edition in December 2019. Sole operated a boutique creative agency and published an annual print magazine. The creative agency has worked with numeous global brands including Gucci, Burberry, Saint Laurent, Farfetch and Jordan Brand. Our latest initiative is sole.digital, a feature-focused, mixed media site dedicated to bringing you the best in culture, first. We work with our roster of global contributors to present the people and ideas that will shape the future of fashion, music, sports, and visual arts, and to engage our audience in conversations on social issues like race, sustainability, and our environment. For more information on Sole, visit: https://www.sole.digital/

Feb 23

5 min 27 sec

“There is a great space for us to be present digitally. To complement the things we are doing, not replace them. And that part I don’t think will ever go away, because if we get it right, why would we not want to continue doing that?”At the end of 2020, Rohma Theunissen caught up with Raj Malhotra, one of the four partners at Sole to talk about the evolution of events and brand experiences as a result of the pandemic, everything the Sole team has been working on, the digital space, where the Sole brand stands today on its 10-year anniversary and what we can expect from the brand moving forward. Note: As the UAE undergoes a second wave of the virus, this episode was recorded virtually to uphold social distancing practices. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Raj MalhotraRajat moved to Dubai after having lived in Los Angeles, Kuwait, Italy, India, and New York. Having graduated from NYU in 2002, Rajat took a year-long sabbatical working on teaching at Project Renewal in NYC. In 2004, he moved to Dubai to establish a telecom and security business that grew to cover 11 countries from Vietnam to Algeria, of which he served as CEO MEA for 8 years. Rajat had also partnered with Sunny Rahbar, co-founder of the Third Line Gallery, on a collaborative project that had seen them host multiple curated exhibitions with NYC gallery, On Stellar Rays. In 2013, Rajat came on board as the fourth partner at Sole. More recently, Rajat built a private recording studio in Dubai, using it as a space for artists to collaborate.About SoleFounded in 2010, Sole is a leading platform for connecting communities through creativity and culture. The grassroots organization has built a rapidly growing community through its annual Sole DXB cultural festival, which saw over 36,000 people from more than 60 countries attend the eighth annual edition in December 2019. Sole operated a boutique creative agency and published an annual print magazine. The creative agency has worked with numerous global brands including Gucci,  Burberry,  Saint Laurent,  Farfetch and Jordan Brand.Our latest initiative is sole.digital, a feature-focused, mixed media site dedicated to bringing you the best in culture, first. We work with our roster of global contributors to present the people and ideas that will shape the future of fashion, music, sports, and visual arts, and to engage our audience in conversations on social issues like race, sustainability, and our environment. For more information on Sole, visit: https://www.sole.digital/

Feb 16

29 min 34 sec

We get how busy things can get, which is why we have come out with a bite-sized edition of Curated Conversations that translates our guests’ key learnings into digestible, effective information that you can absorb in 5 minutes (or less) anytime, anywhere. We like to think of it as a crash course on-the-go to make sure you can rev up your career even when you only have minutes to spare. Real advice, real experts, real quick. That’s a promise. Having launched two successful brands in 2020, Judy Daghestani, Curated Today's Founder, sat down with Rohma Theunissen to offer her top 5 pieces of advice she would give to anyone looking to launch their career as a freelancer or a solopreneur. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Judy Daghestani A graduate of University of Southern California’s MSc Marketing program, Judy Daghestani, is the founder of Curated Today and Dubai-based boutique market research and brand development consultancy LFHM Middle East in Dubai. Born and raised in Southern California and having worked for high-profile luxury and retail brands such as Tiffany & Co., Ralph Lauren & Bloomingdales and Harvey Nichols in Dubai, Judy is highly knowledgeable about our inter-cultural, Middle Eastern retail market and holds an avid passion for consumer insights and psychology. Judy partnered with ESMOD Fashion Institute in Dubai to teach Luxury Brand Development and also is the Co-Founder of EASTWAVE Concept, a virtual pop-up that supports MENA designers reach global audiences. 

Feb 9

5 min

“People are hopeful that’s for sure, there is a light at the end of the tunnel with the vaccine. But overall, people are still selective of how they spend their money. Shopping isn’t top of the list.”Kicking off the second season of Curated Conversations, Rohma Theunissen is joined by Curated Today's Founder, Judy Daghestani to talk about the evolution of the Curated platform, consumer mindsets in 2021, industry trends, sustainability, the COVID-19 vaccine and of course, the pandemic. As the UAE undergoes a second wave of the virus, this episode was virtually recorded to uphold social distancing practices. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Judy DaghestaniA graduate of University of Southern California’s MSc Marketing program, Judy Daghestani, is the founder of Curated Today and Dubai-based boutique market research and brand development consultancy LFHM Middle East in Dubai. Born and raised in Southern California and having worked for high-profile luxury and retail brands such as Tiffany & Co., Ralph Lauren & Bloomingdales and Harvey Nichols in Dubai, Judy is highly knowledgeable about our inter-cultural, Middle Eastern retail market and holds an avid passion for consumer insights and psychology. Judy partnered with ESMOD Fashion Institute in Dubai to teach Luxury Brand Development and also is the Co-Founder of EASTWAVE Concept, a virtual pop-up that supports MENA designers reach global audiences. 

Feb 2

28 min 39 sec

"When people are stuck inside and are losing their jobs, how can you push nail polish when it's the last thing they are thinking about? I shifted to where I was trying to create an 80/20 effect where 80 percent of what I was writing about was talking about these matters and 20 percent focused on creativity and offering escapism to our readers."Where does beauty stand today? In this episode, Rohma Theunissen sits down with Alexandra Venison, former beauty editor of Vogue Arabia to talk about her career, conscious consumption, making beauty relevant in the wake of social unrest and what it takes for beauty brands to succeed in 2020 and beyond.Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Alexandra VenisonAlexandra Venison is a beauty, health and wellness expert. Working in publishing for the last decade, her most recent roles have seen her as the Beauty Editor at Vogue Arabia and Online Editor at Harper’s Bazaar Arabia. Born in London, Alexandra moved to Dubai with her family in 2003. Instant love for the industry saw her intern with various talents and titles across the region. In 2009 she returned to her hometown and graduated with a first-class honour’s degree from the London College of Fashion in Broadcast Journalism. Moving back to Dubai in 2012 she began her career with the region’s leading title Emirates Woman. Since then she has worked with prominent brands and publications both locally and globally across beauty, fashion and lifestyle. Her skills include writing, styling, producing and shooting for both print, online and social. To date, Alexandra has interviewed some of the world’s leading talents. These have included celebrities, Anjelica Huston, Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez and Kourtney Kardashian to designers Donatella Versace and Tom Ford, leaders in the beauty industry like Charlotte Tilbury, Peter Phillips and Tom Pecheux and fashion icons such as Gisele Bündchen and Cara Delavigne. Ever looking to expand her knowledge and skills, Alexandra has recently qualified from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition as an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach (INHC) and as a Clinical Hypnotherapy and Psychotherapy practitioner with the General Hypnotherapy Register. She currently lives in Dubai where she works as a freelance editor, content creator and consultant.

Dec 2020

26 min 13 sec

“In traditional retail, you buy stock and if it doesn’t sell, it moves into clearance. But for us, the longer you hold on to stock, the higher its value – and that is really unique.” - Nohman Ahmed, Co-Founder of PresentedbyRetail in 2020 has been nothing short of a challenge. But amidst the turmoil, British-born luxury sneaker consignment retail concept, Presentedby is thriving. Having recently opened their third global flagship store at Level Shoes in Dubai Mall this month, Rohma Theunissen caught up with two of the brand’s co-founders, Nohman Ahmed and Ridwane Ettoubi to talk about the luxury sneaker market, their Middle Eastern customer, why the consignment retail model works and what it takes to sell $150,000 sneakers. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout PresentedbyHeaded by Ridwane Ettoubi, Presentedby has become a beacon of sub-culture and a destination for sneaker and streetwear obsessives attracting some of the biggest names in the music, sport and arts industry such as Neymar, Coi Leray, Sanchoo, Dave East, The Game and Gunna.  Since they opened their doors in 2017, Presentedby have now started expanding and having opened their consignment store in world-renowned Parisian Luxury department store Le Bon Marché in Paris earlier in 2020, and most recently at luxury department store Level Shoes in The Dubai Mall in Dubai. Each store they open continuously brings experiential retail experiences with its award- winning interiors and highly desirable product offering.    Presentedby is owned by Undercover Brothers, a privately owned group founded by brothers Riz, Imran and Nohman Ahmed who over the past couple of years have successfully attained and established three major companies; Crep Protect, Presentedby and KLEKT.  About Level ShoesLevel Shoes is a globally recognized retail concept and destination dedicated to the world of designer footwear and accessories. The store offers a wide range of unique services; from shoe experts to foot therapies, culinary delights, a dedicated concierge service as well as a regional online shopping platform. The curated space is divided into 40 designer boutiques and five multibrand areas each designed with its own bespoke personality: Women’s Designer, Women’s Accessories, Women’s Contemporary, Men’s Designer, Men’s Accessories, Trends and Kids. 

Nov 2020

32 min 48 sec

“What we are seeing now globally is a huge adoption in our users using the [new] tagging feature to find out more about these products. Over 130 million people around the world have already tapped on shopping tags since they launched around two years ago—making it easier for businesses [to sell products online].”On Instagram's 10th anniversary, Rohma Theunissen sat down with Priya Patel, Product Growth Lead for Instagram and Facebook across the Middle East, Turkey and Africa, to understand the evolution of social media as a result of the pandemic, the rise of social commerce on Instagram and how brands can leverage the platform to elevate their social media strategies. Resources mentioned within the episode:Facebook Blueprint:https://www.facebook.com/business/learn Facebook Blueprint for Instagram:https://www.facebook.com/business/learn/categories/instagram  Instagram Business: https://business.instagram.com Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Priya Patel Priya Patel is the Product Growth Lead for Instagram and Facebook across the Middle East, Turkey and Africa. She has more than 18 years of experience in media and advertising including print (Financial Times), TV (BBC), agency and digital in the UK, Australia and Asia. Prior to joining Facebook, Priya spent five years at multinational company Google, where she was an instrumental part of YouTube’s commercial rollout across South East Asia. Priya relocated to the Middle East with Google in 2014 where she managed the Food and Beverage sector and led advertising strategy across MENA. It was in 2015 that she was appointed as Business Development Lead at Instagram where she works closely with brands and agencies to help them achieve their business objectives on the platform. In her spare time, Priya takes inspiration from Instagram to pursue her interests in cooking, travel and scuba diving. Follow her at @priya7. 

Nov 2020

32 min 6 sec

“The role of a [communications] agency now has really evolved to be much more sales focused which is great for the market because that’s what the goal should always have been.”2020 has thrown a massive curveball to brands across every industry and now, PR & Communications agencies are required to play their most important role to date. Rohma Theunissen sat down with Rani Ilmi, Founder of boutique Dubai-based FRAME Publicity, whose clients include Matchesfashion, Maria Tash, Tiffany & Co and By FAR to find out what it takes to successfully maneuver an agency and its clients through a pandemic and her strategies for enabling her clients not only to survive, but thrive. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Rani IlmiStrategic Brand Builder and FRAME Publicity founder Rani Ilmi has enjoyed a 15 year career in luxury public relations, working on 360 degree brand strategies across fashion, fine jewelry & watches, beauty and lifestyle industries to strengthen their positions, first in New York, and now in the Middle East.Born and raised in Dubai, Rani relocated to New York City in 2004, delving straight in to the world of PR & communications with in-house roles at CHANEL, Versace, Gucci, Jimmy Choo and Tiffany & Co.She moved back to Dubai in 2011 to apply her NYC learnings to the Arab market and to launch NET-A-PORTER across the Middle East. Over the last eight years in Dubai, Rani has represented NET-A-PORTER, Bottega Veneta, Victoria Beckham, Versace, Tod’s, Charlotte Tilbury, MATCHESFASHION.COM, Tiffany & Co., and many more.Currently, at her agency FRAME she is enjoying the newness of working with 'social-media-first' luxury brands by helping them connect with the Arab customer - from BY FAR to Maria Tash. The pandemic has forced communications to evolve to be much more customer-centric and the learnings from this challenge have sparked a deeper interest in communications for her.About FRAME PublicityFRAME is a thorough, thoughtful communications consultancy where the mechanics of media, influencers and the end consumers in an often misunderstood Middle East market, are – well – understood. A Dubai-grown agency, with a NYC polish and efficiency, FRAME is a full-service resource for brand awareness in all its forms. Our team have been shaping and communicating client vision in fashion, luxury, lifestyle, beauty, retail and luxury e-commerce for fifteen years. FRAME knows what’s possible, and we’ve learned how to stretch that definition. Clients come to us to connect – with media, with consumers, with partners and “influencers” of all size and stripe. We build relationships, foster partnerships, and start conversations. Our team is fiercely committed and fully engaged – and fun. We understand the Middle East culture and know the difference between popularity and true influence. Client impressions outweigh media impressions – if you know what we mean. FRAME finds the path that others miss. And we deliver results, again and again and again. 

Oct 2020

26 min 5 sec

“It’s always evolving. You have to know what your passion is and what you’re good at as well as know what you are willing to learn more about so that you can offer your best services [to your clients].” - Judy Daghestani“I never created a business plan [when I launched], I just went for it. And I felt this approach was useful for me to understand exactly where I wanted to take my business before creating a more concrete plan.” - Rohma TheunissenHalfway through Curated Conversation's inaugural season, host Rohma Theunissen is joined by Curated ME's Founder Judy Daghestani to reflect on the past three months and discuss their individual freelance journeys. From addressing sticky topics such as pricing and finding your niche to client pitching techniques and strategic collaborations, this episode unearths what it takes to succeed as a solopreneur in this 1.5 trillion dollar industry. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Judy DaghestaniA graduate of University of Southern California’s MSc Marketing program, Judy Daghestani, is the founder of Curated ME and Dubai-based boutique market research and brand development consultancy LFHM Middle East in Dubai. Born and raised in Southern California and having worked for high-profile luxury and retail brands such as Tiffany & Co., Ralph Lauren & Bloomingdales and Harvey Nichols in Dubai, Judy is highly knowledgeable about our inter-cultural, Middle Eastern retail market and holds an avid passion for consumer insights and psychology. Judy partners with ESMOD Fashion Institute in Dubai to teach Luxury Brand Development and also is the Co-Founder of EASTWAVE Concept, a virtual pop-up that supports MENA designers reach global audiences. 

Sep 2020

35 min 46 sec

“Gen Z get their news from Instagram, they get their beauty hacks from TikTok. They’re not buying newspapers, they’re not even going online as much as Millennials – it really is [mainly] social media. We posted a beauty review on TikTok and it got 300,000 views in 24 hours. That kind of reach doesn’t happen with print. Digital is instant and it's global.”For this week's episode, Rohma Theunissen caught up with Milli Midwood, Cosmopolitan Middle East’s youngest-ever Editor in Chief, to talk about the shifts and challenges faced by the Middle Eastern publishing industry, the evolution of print and digital magazines, and strategies for catering to the region’s Gen Z reader. Hosted by: Rohma Theunissen About Milli MidwoodHaving lived and grown-up in Dubai for the past 27 years, Milli has seen first-hand how the fashion, beauty and lifestyle industries have evolved - and continue to grow - across the UAE. Milli has worked at a number of regional titles, including OK! Middle East and Grazia Middle East before joining Harper's BAZAAR Arabia, where she headed up the digital team for three years. Now, as Editor in Chief of Cosmopolitan Middle East, Milli is spearheading the largest young women’s media brand in the world in a new, inclusive and exciting direction. 

Sep 2020

21 min 11 sec

“Everybody is going to be using digital means now to tell their stories. The advantage that big [fashion] brands used to have was that they could do so much more offline as well. Online does, to a huge extent, level out the playing field. So, if a smaller brand is able to innovate, there’s a lot of opportunity for them.”With September (AKA fashion month) less than a week away, Rohma Theunissen sat down with Ritu Upadhyay, Middle East Bureau Chief at WWD, to talk about the current state of the Middle Eastern fashion industry, her predictions for the region’s first fashion month post-pandemic and how brands can engage with the Middle Eastern consumer and market in the absence of traditional events. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Ritu UpadhyayRitu Upadhyay is the Middle East Bureau Chief at Women’s Wear Daily (WWD). Often referred to as “the fashion bible,” WWD has been THE industry voice of authority for the global fashion, retail and beauty communities for over 100 years. Ritu covers the business side of retail and fashion along with trends and runway shows, bringing together a unique understanding of both the creative and commercial sides of the fashion industry. For the last ten years, she has covered international runways shows in emerging markets, reporting on new design talent, as well as breaking news on retail markets across the Middle East. She has profiled fashion luminaries including Giorgio Armani, Tom Ford, Christian Louboutin, Elie Saab, as well as traveled to factories across India to report on manufacturing and skilled artisans. Ritu studied journalism and political science at Northwestern University. She began her career at the newsweekly, TIME Magazine in New York and has authored a biography on President John F. Kennedy. In addition to WWD, she has covered the Middle East for Bloomberg TV. Born and raised in Chicago, Ritu has lived in New York, India, Jordan and Pakistan, and currently divides her time between Washington D.C. and Dubai.

Aug 2020

30 min 20 sec

"The Lebanese fashion industry is quite an important one, both regionally and globally. So whatever we can do, as PRs in that industry, it is our role to use our resources to shed light on these designers, because no one else will." Rohma Theunissen speaks to Christian Daccache, Founder of Beirut-based agency Bureau Des Créateurs and Co-Founder of EASTWAVE Concept & United For Lebanese Creative Fund to talk about the aftermath of the tragic explosion that took place in Beirut August 4th, the United for Lebanese Creatives Fund and how people around the world can help. To learn more about the United for Lebanese Creatives Fund, click here.  To shop and donate at EASTWAVE Concept click here.Links to supportive entities mentioned within the episode:Impact LebanonLebanese Red CrossAnimals LebanonBeit El BarakaHosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Christian Daccache Christian Daccache is the Founder of Bureau Des Créateurs (BDC); a Beirut-based agency that discovers young talent, nurtures them strategically, and provides them with international standards of image consultancy, PR, Communications and Marketing services in the Middle East and North Africa, to help them thrive. Christian also has extensive experience in the fashion industry. Starting as a PR & Marketing Associate at Chalhoub Group Retail, he was later hired by LVMH to head CÉLINE’s CRM & Communications department in the Middle East. Christian holds a masters in Luxury Brand Management from Istituto Marangoni and a BA in Entrepreneurship from the American University in Beirut. About Bureau Des Créateurs Bureau Des Créateurs offers its clients a tailored approach for their brands to develop regionally, and globally. BDC also consults on all matters related to how consumers perceive their brands as well as match that with the right PR & Communication efforts to take it to the next level. Bureau Des Créateurs has a deep understanding of the Middle Eastern market, direct links to the top tier media channels of the fashion industry, strong relationships with key influencers, public figures and stylists, as well as a rich database of potential VIPs and Customers, and solid ties with key boutiques and buyers. About United For Lebanese Creatives  Developed with the unified support of Starch Foundation, Slow Factory Foundation, Fondation Saradar, Bureau Des Créateurs, Maison Pyramide, Faux Consultancy and Roni Helou, United For Lebanese Creatives is a fundraising initiative to benefit Beirut’s independent designers and artists whose damages amounted to over 850,000$. The crowdfunding campaign is dedicated to supporting the restoration and survival of Beirut's creative sector which is also a vital industry in terms of employment and culture. Working in consultation with the affected designers, the fund has been able to identify the assistance needed and the amounts required for each of its 39 applicants. . About EASTWAVE Concept EASTWAVE is a virtual pop-up concept aiming to support emerging and established designers from across the MENA region, enabling them to reach international audiences and a new customer base. Each season the pop-up is hosted by like-minded platforms that share the same mission and values. EASTWAVE is founded by Dana Mortada in LA, Judy Daghestani in Dubai and Christian Daccache in Beirut. 

Aug 2020

25 min 11 sec

“It’s about thinking globally and acting or communicating locally. The consumer knows when [the content] it's authentic to them or not. So the more Arabs you are going to hire in your teams, the more creative outlets you will find because it’s a different culture, and they can bring you a completely different narrative.”In this special episode of Curated Conversations, Rohma Theunissen connects with Sofia Guellaty and Myriam Benaroya-Djelouat, Co-founders of the internationally acclaimed Dubai-based, Arab-first, digital luxury publication MILLE World to discuss the significance of the recent #HireMoreArabs movement across GCC, diversity within the Middle Eastern luxury industry and how championing an authentically Arab mindset can further the regional industry and economy on a global scale. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Sofia GuellatyAs Editor-in-Chief and Creative Director of MILLE Sofia’s aim is to create content that truly resonates with the Arab world today. Born and raised in Tunisia, Sofia Guellaty brings her knowledge and passion for Arab culture together on a daily basis. Her career in media and fashion spans over more than 15 years as she began freelancing and styling for major publications since  2005. Her creative universe and brand expertise brought her to work with the biggest names and brands in the industry creating impactful and effective campaigns.About Myriam Benaroya-DjelouatMyriam Benaroya is the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) of MILLE World. She is responsible for creating the MILLE brand identity and executing its marketing and advertising strategy. While working as the CBG MEA Marketing Director for Huawei Technologies, Myriam worked closely with Huawei’s Shenzhen and London hubs to define the company’s global marketing strategy and launched the ‘Fashion Meets Technology’ projects for the Chinese manufacturer. Myriam comes to MILLE with a 15 years Luxury Retail expertise heading the MarComm departments at Hermes Middle East & South East Asia, Versace Jewellery Licensing in China mainland and the APAC region.About MILLE WorldMILLE is a 360-degree homegrown media brand featuring premium, focused and forward-thinking content in the space of fashion, lifestyle, art and culture. Cultural commentary for the Arab world and their diaspora: MILLE aims to deliver a new approach to regional media consumption, marrying an authentic editorial voice with commercial viability. MILLE will speak to high-net-worth Arab millennials in search of representation, inspiration and disruptive conversation. Omni-channel experiences: The platforms will include a website, collectible print magazine, a video channel, and a special-events strategy that ropes together the creative community in the MENA region. Extended services MILLE will offer a consultancy arm ready to tackle effective ways to reach and win the attention of millennials in the Arab world.

Jul 2020

46 min 9 sec

Curated Today is proud to present the Curated Conversations podcast series which is dedicated to making insightful, high-value, industry-focused information available to you on the go. Hosted by Rohma Theunissen, Curated Conversations explores the unique elements of the Middle Eastern retail industry and the impact that it has on a global scale. Our episodes will feature some of the region’s most prominent movers and shakers as they share stories, experiences and learnings that address real-life challenges and trending topics to help you navigate all of the changes we face in the industry today.  Real insights, real experts, real conversations. To find out more about Curated Conversations and Curated Today please visit www.curatedtoday.comAbout Rohma TheunissenA graduate of McGill University and Parsons School of Design, Rohma has amassed over a decade of experience in the international luxury fashion industry working for brands such as Carolina Herrera, Giorgio Armani, Marchesa, Harvey Nichols, Harper’s BAZAAR Arabia and NET-A-PORTER. With an avid passion for industry and consumer analysis coupled with her love for fashion and retail trends; Rohma is adept pinpointing the underlying societal and cultural themes that impact the industry on a regional and global scale.

Jul 2020

1 min 54 sec

“It’s going to be a very long recovery and we are expecting it to take until the end of 2022 to reach the levels [of profitability] that we had at the end of 2019.”In this episode Hall & Partners’ MENA Executive Director, Chady Debs, shares insight on the real impact that the Coronavirus pandemic has had on the region from a business and profitability perspective. Chady walks us through the GCC stats and figures and shares the details of how Hall & Partners MENA have pivoted their strategy in supporting clients to adapt to The New Normal. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Chady DebsWith over 14 years of experience in research consultancy, Chady is now involved in the management of Hall & Partners MENA, part of Omnicom Group. He overlooks the full portfolio of services, which covers brand, content, and communication consultancy and the teams managing a broad roster of businesses. His client experience makes him an expert in media, fashion, automotive, banking and tech among other sectors.

Jul 2020

25 min 30 sec

“I think it’s a huge exercise for brands, designers, influencers, consumers – and for people in general – to really slow down and think about what’s important. And that actually is going to affect their shopping behavior.”In the inaugural episode of Curated Conversations, we are joined by Curated Middle East’s founder, Judy Daghestani who shares her thoughts and insights on the consumer mindset in the post-COVID-19 era and how brands can target each of the key generations that currently form the primary target audience. Hosted by: Rohma TheunissenAbout Judy DaghestaniA graduate of University of Southern California’s MSc Marketing program, Judy Daghestani, is the founder of Curated ME and Dubai-based boutique market research and brand development consultancy LFHM Middle East in Dubai. Born and raised in Southern California and having worked for high-profile luxury and retail brands such as Tiffany & Co., Ralph Lauren & Bloomingdales and Harvey Nichols in Dubai, Judy is highly knowledgeable about our inter-cultural, Middle Eastern retail market and holds an avid passion for consumer insights and psychology. Judy partners with ESMOD Fashion Institute in Dubai to teach Luxury Brand Development and also is the Co-Founder of EASTWAVE Concept, a virtual pop-up that supports MENA designers reach global audiences. 

Jul 2020

28 min 42 sec