2012 EMEA judging panel

Best in Biz Awards 2012 EMEA judging panel included high-caliber judges from top-tier newspapers, business and technology publications, as well as broadcast outlets from 11 countries, including Brazil, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Netherlands, Slovakia, South Africa, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates and United Kingdom. Combined, the 22 judges on the 2012 panel had more than 450 years of experience and have written for a combined total of more than 160 consumer, business, financial, trade and technology publications worldwide.

Best in Biz Awards 2012 EMEA judging panel included:


AMEinfo.com (United Arab Emirates)

Caroline Whyatt

CAROLINE WHYATT manages the AMEinfo.com website, the leading business news portal in the Middle East (part of Emap Ltd), overseeing all operations involved in the strategic and tactical management of the site and campaign management team. Experience of both the agency world and client-side projects over the past 16 years has led Caroline to be a great advocate of design, user experience, information architecture and SEO. She has been working in the digital sector from its earliest days, originally for a software company designing user-friendly interfaces in 1996, and has subsequently managed the launch of numerous websites for leading organisations in the UK’s established online marketplace, including O2, BT, Zurich Financial Services, Daimler Chrysler and the British Government.

ARD (Germany)

Dominique Lars Ziesemer

DOMINIQUE L. ZIESEMER has worked in television for nearly 20 years. For six years, he has been the presenter of a TV advice magazine about consumer technology products, including mobile phones as well as security systems, in the most widely broadcasted German TV channel ARD. Today, he continues to produce TV shows and develop new formats. In 2009 he was a member of the jury of the famous Rose D’Or Festival. He also represented various large organizations like the Frauenhofer Institut at fairs. He graduated from Mainz University with a research thesis about people’s “zapping” behavior.

Bild (Germany)

Kristin Breuer

bio coming soon

Branders (Switzerland)

Olivia El Sayed

OLIVIA EL SAYED studied German and French at the University of London. Initially employed by a music label in Germany, she started her editorial career at a radio station and later worked as an editor for various online media for almost 10 years. Starting with the Zurich-based branding agency Branders in 2008, she assumed responsibility as editorial manager of The Brander publication effective January, 2011. On www.thebrander.com she features a steady flow of new stories about brands and their creators, generated by herself and a team of renowned journalists and photographers.

Business Breakfast (United Arab Emirates)

Brandy Scott

Radio presenter BRANDY SCOTT co-hosts The Business Breakfast – Dubai Eye 103.8’s award-winning flagship morning show. Her 12 years in Dubai have seen her work across a number of magazines, newspapers and broadcast media.

Drum Magazine (United Kingdom)

Paul Fabretti

PAUL FABRETTI is a featured blogger for several marketing publications, including The Drum (UK), as well as Social Media Today and MarketingProfs (U.S.). He also writes a blog, blendingthemix.com, which has been in the Ad Age Power 150 for over 3 years and has been shortlisted for numerous computerweekly and BIMA awards. Paul’s digital experience goes back to 2001 when the web was but a baby. He is a digital marketing expert, having provided consultancy, developed and implemented social media strategies in the UK and Europe for some of the world’s biggest brands, including Dyson, Lexus, Microsoft, Durex as well as The NHS and many UK Police Forces. He also speaks at numerous digital marketing events throughout Europe.

Hospodárske Noviny (Slovakia)

Vladislav Doktor

bio coming soon

IAA Magazine (United Arab Emirates)

Manjula Ramakrishnan

MANJULA RAMAKRISHNAN is former editor of the magazines Business Quality Review and Dubai Rotary in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. In her career spanning 25 years, Manjula has written well over 3000 articles on a variety of subjects. She is currently editor for the UAE-IAA (Internal Audit Association) Magazine and also contributes articles on Fashion, Automobiles, and Lifestyle for Durrah Magazine in Bahrain. She writes on local events for Panorama Magazine, Sharjah. Besides, she is also co-founder of the online portal www.mrwebedit.com.

Irish Independent (Ireland)

Martina Devlin

MARTINA DEVLIN is an award-winning Irish journalist and author, with more than 20 years of experience. Her books include the number one bestseller Banksters, a co-authored account of the Irish banking collapse, and Ship of Dreams, a novel about the Titanic – inspired by a family connection with the disaster. She is based in Dublin, where she writes a weekly column on current affairs for the Irish Independent, and in 2011 was named columnist of the year. She also contributes short stories and essays to RTE Radio 1’s Sunday Miscellany, and in 2009 was writer-in-residence at the Princess Grace Irish Library in Monaco. Her website is www.martinadevlin.com and she also tweets @DevlinMartina.

IT Web (South Africa)

Kathryn McConnachie

KATHRYN MCCONNACHIE is the digital media editor for ITWeb Online in South Africa. ITWeb is the oldest technology and business news web site in the country. Kathryn focuses on covering all things to do with social media, the internet and mobile innovation, while maintaining a primary interest in the use of media and technology for social change. She holds a Bachelor of Journalism degree from Rhodes University, and specialised in new media and communication design while also majoring in philosophy.

IT Web (South Africa)

Farzana Rasool

FARZANA RASOOL is the IT in Government editor for ITWeb, creating, managing and supervising all government-related content for the publication. She has a journalism degree from Rhodes University, where she specialised in new media and writing. Farzana was one of the first winners of the ITWeb bursary and started at the company as an intern in 2009.

Jerusalem Post (Israel)

Steve Linde

STEVE LINDE has served as editor-in-chief of The Jerusalem Post since July, and previously worked as managing editor, news editor and night editor at the publication. He also worked as an editor, reporter and news reader at Israel Radio English News for 21 years. Steve was born in Zimbabwe, educated in South Africa and the US, and lives in Jerusalem. He has graduate degrees in sociology and journalism, and served in IDF Artillery.

Khaleej Times (United Arab Emirates)

Issac John

ISSAC JOHN, deputy business editor of Khaleej Times, is a leading business journalist and economic analyst. A seasoned stalwart in Gulf’s mainstream journalism for 31 years, Issac is the senior-most Indian journalist, in terms of Gulf experience, working in the UAE. He had worked with Gulf News and Emirates News before joining Khaleej Times in 1992. Issac is acclaimed for his invigorating and insightful analysis of global and regional business and economic issues and trends and has won three pan-Arab media awards besides over a dozen prestigious accolades, including the Asian Achiever Award, Pravasi Ratna, recognition for outstanding media services from Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin and World Malayalee Council and the Malaysian Business Media Award from the Malaysian Business Council. Issac is also the founder president of Kalabhavan Global and Gulf Arts and Literary Academy, former president of All Kerala Colleges Alumni Forum, and chairman of GOPIO’s (Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin) Global Media Council.

Micro Mart (United Kingdom)

Kevin Pocock

KEVIN POCOCK is a technology journalist and poet with a sharp eye for concise communication and an insatiable appetite for audience engagement. The former deputy editor of Micro Mart, the UK’s only weekly computer title, Kevin began his career as staff writer before progressing to reviews editor and beyond, and still continues to contribute to the publication. He has written a variety of news, reviews and comment pieces for market-leading titles IT Pro, Custom PC and PC Pro, and has also penned reviews for the entertainment site, Den of Geek. He holds a BA in English Literature and Creative Writing from University of Wales.

Neue Zürcher Zeitung (Switzerland)

Kurt Haupt

bio coming soon

Newzglobe.com (United Arab Emirates)

Meraj Syed

MERAJ SYED is the founder and CEO of the online business publication Newzglobe.com. With over 20 years of experience in media, marketing and advertising, Meraj has been involved in numerous projects in the industry and has met good and great entrepreneurs with amazing ideas throughout the years. Meraj gives a monthly award on newzglobe.com to an entrepreneur who has done something extraordinary for the business community, with several thousand readers getting the chance to vote for their favorite entrepreneur each month.

PCM (Netherlands)

Abram Wagenaar

ABRAM WAGENAAR is the editor for PCM, The Netherlands’ leading consumer and small business IT magazine, where his coverage ranges from office software to security suites and from creative applications to programming tools. His professional interests also include obscure operating systems and command line tools for geeks. His work appears in top-tier Dutch-language publications such as PCM, Computer Idee and PC Active. Abram graduated with an MA degree in Book & Digital Media Studies from Leiden University, The Netherlands.

PC Plus (United Kingdom)

Catherine Hackforth

CAT HACKFORTH is the operations editor for PC Plus magazine in the UK. She edits the news and opinion section, and is the magazine’s sub-editor. She also works across PC Format, Official Windows and What Laptop, Tablet and Smartphone magazines. Cat has a particular interest in social media and online security. She has a BA in English from Bristol University and a postgraduate diploma in magazine journalism from Cardiff University.

The Times (United Kingdom)

Robert Crampton

ROBERT CRAMPTON is an award-winning journalist and weekly columnist in The Times. Robert joined The Times in 1991 and in addition to Beta Male, his weekly column in the Saturday magazine, he has written numerous features and articles for the paper, including an exclusive preview of the new Wii Fit computer game in February 2008. Robert won “Interviewer of the Year” at the British Press Awards in 2004 and over the years, he has interviewed Tony Blair, David Cameron, Paul McCartney, Kate Winslet, Kelly Brook, Alex Ferguson, David Walliams, Liam Gallagher, Sienna Miller and John Terry. Robert graduated with a degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economy from Oxford University. He was once on Dragon’s Den and admits he failed miserably.

Web User (United Kingdom)

Daniel Booth

DANIEL BOOTH is the acting editor at Web User. Having spent several years drowning in mud at festivals as a music journalist, Daniel made the leap to Web User in 2001, working his way up from staff writer to deputy editor, via features editor. His first experience of the internet came in the late Nineties with regular rants on the Gillingham FC fans’ message-board, but these days he spends more time planning holidays on TripAdvisor.

Xbox Plus (Brazil)

Marcos A.T. Silva

MARCOS A.T. SILVA manages XboxPlus, a popular gaming website, where he oversees editorial coverage about games, as well as the gaming industry and technology, always with a critical eye to the market. Marcos has more than 15 years of experience in the industry and prior to Xbox Plus, he worked at his own IT technology company. Marcos started his career at Multiplic, an established Brazilian financial group. He graduated from UNICID University with a degree in marketing and advertising.

4th String (France)

Todd Zuniga

TODD ZUNIGA is the creator and host of Literary Death Match, an event featured in 44 cities worldwide, creator of 4thString.com and the founding editor of Opium Magazine. His fiction has appeared here and there online and in print. He lives between Los Angeles, and guest rooms all over Europe.