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    Essential networking events for publishers across Europe, Asia, Latin America, Africa, Middle East and North America. 

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Speakers

WAN-IFRA is calling on its supporters around the globe to nominate great speakers for our events.

All Speakers

  • Founder, Culture Machine

    Venkat Prasad

    Venkat has had a remarkable career spanning over almost two decades working with moguls of the digital world including YouTube, Google, and Yahoo, Intuit where his vision to create a pioneer digital video company was born. With the massive on-going shift in India  from traditional medium to online content, Venkat saw an opportunity to create Culture Machine a company imbibed with the philosophy of making cutting edge video content to cater to the highly volatile digital market. Thus Culture Machine was co-founded to bridge this gap, manage and sustain online consumption of entertainment content and also provide a platform for young talents across the country to create, nurture and exemplify themselves across digital video avenues. His vision for Culture Machine is to set a precedent for digital video media formats in India and grow to become the largest youth focused digital entertainment network in South Asia.

  • VP of Product, Chartbeat, USA

  • Editor, Motherly, USA

    Conz is originally from Argentina but grew up bouncing around all over the world. She landed in Brooklyn where she met her husband and had a baby boy. Before her role at Mother.ly as editor for MotherlyStories, she was at Buzzfeed where she was the Regional Director of the Americas, launching Buzzfeed Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Spain and LATAM. Before that she held positions at Univision, Mashable and MySpace.

  • CEO of YehBaby Digital Creatives and Media Consultants

    Ivor Price is one of South Africa's most celebrated journalists. His illustrious career in print media includes international experience as a foreign correspondent for Media24, as well as media training for WAN-IFRA. Furthermore, he is a multi award winning television and radio presenter.

  • Co-Founder, Food For Mzansi, South Africa

    Ivor Price
    Co-Founder of Food For Mzansi, Ivor Price, is a multi-award-winning journalist whose accolades include three ATKV Mediaveertjie Awards as the nation’s Best Columnist (2017) and Best Presenter of a Radio Current Affairs Show (2016 and 2017). The former TV News Anchor also presented a popular television show in which he traveled more than 100,000km to interview the movers and shakers of South Africa’s agricultural industry. Other career highlights include a stint as a London-based foreign correspondent and publishing leading community newspapers for the Media24 group.
  • Founder, FayerWayer, Betazeta Networks, Aardvark Labs, and ImageMaker Studios, Chile

    Leo Prieto pioneered the internet industry in Latin America with ImageMaker, a company he founded in 1996 at age 16, that later became an award-winning web development agency working with some of the biggest clients in the region. He sold this company in 2004.

    In 2005 he developed a blogging addiction and founded FayerWayer, which since 2011 is the #1 Spanish-language blog in the world.

    With FayerWayer as the cornerstone he co-founded Betazeta to realize the dream of revolutionizing the way mass media works, by disrupting the editorial process, developing unique technology and creating new ways of monetizing beyond advertising.

    Today Betazeta is largest network of independent content communities in Latin America, gathering over 10 million users each month.

    He has been selected an Endeavor Global Entrepreneur (2009), Latin Entrepreneur of the Year (2012), Chilean Entrepreneur of the Year (2011), The GOOD 100 (2013), 30 under 30 (2008), 100 Young Leaders (2006), Top 100 International Web Developers (2001), amongst other recognitions, and has been invited to speak at major events including SXSW (Austin, TX), Campus Party (Brazil), La Red Innova (Spain), OMExpo (Brazil and Spain), FiiS (Chile), and WebCongress (Miami).

  • President & Chief Executive Officer, Philippine Daily Inquirer and Group Chief Executive Officer, Inquirer Group

    Sandy P Romualdez
    Alexandra “Sandy” P. Romualdez is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Philippine Daily Inquirer and Group Chief Executive Officer of the Inquirer Group of Companies. As President and CEO, Sandy directs the operations of the company and is responsible for corporate strategic planning, management development, succession planning, performance management, organizational design, corporate policy-making and organizational development. She also plays a key role in network building particularly with regard to the business community and non-government sector. In October 2012, Sandy was appointed Group Chief Executive Officer of the Inquirer Group of Companies. She is also the Chairperson of Hinge Inquirer Publications (magazine publishing); President of Inquirer Publications, Inc. (tabloid publishing); and Member of the Board of Directors of Inquirer.net, Trans-Radio Broadcasting Inc. (Radyo Inquirer) and MegaMobile. She is a member of WAN-IFRA's APAC Committee of CEOs. In 2019, she was elected to the Supervisory Board of WAN-IFRA and is the Board's only Asian female member.
  • VP, Digital Business Development, La Presse+ Platform

    Chris Prinos is VP, Digital Business Development of La Presse+ Platform. He spent over 15 years as a leader across multiple disciplines including marketing, pre-sales, business development, and project management. During his tenure, Christopher developed a commanding knowledge of the media software landscape and worked actively to both promote and implement editorial, advertising, customer relationship management, production, self-service, mobile, and tablet platforms.

    As Director of Business Development, Christopher was responsible for the successful sale and implementation of cloud-based solutions for thousands of users across hundreds of newspapers including enterprise contracts with Gannett Co., Tribune Publishing, News Corporation, Hearst Newspapers, The Washington Post, and dozens of others.

  • Digital Editor - BBC Hindi

    Rajesh Priyadarshi

    As Digital Editor, Rajesh leads digital journalism to expand the BBC’s reach in India’s Hindi digital market.  Rajesh, who has over 22 years’ experience of print, radio, online and TV journalism, focuses on bringing together the best of all mobile and social platforms. In last 18 months, in his leadership BBC Hindi has launched LINE, Audioboom and Instagram official accounts and revamped the Youtube channel. He was the leading member of the team that launched the BBC Hindi website, bbchindi.com. 

  • Program Director, Element AI

    Sébastien Provencher

     

    Sébastien Provencher is Director, Strategy & Solutions, and one of the early employees at Element AI (Twitter: @element_ai). Serial entrepreneur with more than 17 years of experience successfully building digital products and services, Sébastien’s recent roles include Vice-President stints at HomeAdvisor and Acquisio. He co-founded two startups, including VC-funded Needium, where he worked as Vice President, Product Management and Business Development between 2007 and 2012. From 1999 to 2007 he played an instrumental role in formulating Yellow Pages Group’s online strategy in Canada. Sébastien is also mentor in the startup accelerator FounderFuel and adviser to several young tech companies. He can be found on Twitter at @sebprovencher.

  • Executive VP, International, Index Exchange

    With more than 15 years of leadership experience in the digital media industry, James is applying his expertise towards the growth and expansion of Index Exchange’s offices and operations across Europe and new global markets.

    Prior to joining Index, he was the CEO of Datacratic, a machine-learning and AI software start up. James has previously served as a consultant to large media companies including Yellow Pages Group, Rogers Digital Media and The Globe and Mail, where he worked with senior executives to establish competitive strategies leveraging the opportunities emerging from a shift to real-time, data-driven advertising.

    James is a successful angel investor and serves as an advisor to several leading digital media and e-commerce start ups

  • CEO, Thirdpresence

    Valtteri, CEO at Thirdpresence (a video advertising company founded in 2007), is a seasoned ad tech and technology leader with deep roots in the mobile applications industry. Prior to Thirdpresence Valtteri led a multinational growth organization of 200 people in the mobile marketing industry (Zed), managing an annual revenue of $150 million. Valtteri has a keen interest in building the digital video advertising market and has contributed to the IAB Digital Video Advertising Guide.

    Thirdpresence provides AI-powered programmatic video advertising with industry-leading MOAT viewability rates in brand advertising. Thirdpresence creates the best in-app brand environment and user experience for video advertising. Match your branding objectives with a large-scale video audience and get results. The company has offices in Helsinki, New York, and London.

  • Vice President, Research and innovation at Aalto University

    Tuija I. Pulkkinen is Vice President for Research and Innovations and Professor of Space Science and Technology at Aalto University in Espoo, Finland. Prof. Pulkkinen is a recognized space scientist working in the field of solar influence on the Earth’s space environment. Prof. Pulkkinen graduated from the University of Helsinki in Finland with a PhD in theoretical physics (space physics) in 1992. She joined the Finnish Meteorological Institute in 1988 and led the space research group there from 2003 until leaving for Aalto University in 2011. Her international experience includes two extended visits to U. Colorado in Boulder in 1996-1997 and to Los Alamos National Laboratory in 2006-2007. Prof. Pulkkinen has held numerous positions in international and national scientific organizations, including presidency of the European Geosciences Union. She is a member of the Finnish Academy of Sciences and Letters, Royal Astronomical Society, Academia Europea, and a foreign associate of the US National Academy of Sciences. In 2017, The European Geosciences Union EGU awarded her the Julius Bartels Medal triennially in recognition of outstanding research in solar-terrestrial sciences.

  • Global Editor of Video and Pictures, Reuters, UK

    John Pullman

    John Pullman is Global Head of Video, Pictures, Sport, Lifestyle and Entertainment for Reuters. His role spans visuals and text as the company focuses increasingly on multimedia news for digital markets. John started his career in newspapers in the UK, and worked at senior level for Independent Television News in London and Al Jazeera English in Qatar before joining Reuters in 2010.

  • Managing Director & CEO, ABP, India

    D.D. Purkayastha is the Managing Director and CEO of ABP. He oversees strategy and operations of the ABP Group.  A cost and management accountant, Purkayastha has spent 37 years in the media industry.

    Under Purkayastha’s leadership, ABP has grown to be the largest reached news media in India. The brand’s TV News Bouquet has the highest viewership among Indian news channels. Purkayastha is regarded as a veteran in the IT Industry in India. He has led ABP to be one of the most diversified media companies in the country.

    Purkayastha is the chairperson of INFOCOM, the country's largest ICT exhibition, and is on the Board of ANN (ABP News Network Private Ltd), WAN-IFRA and INMA. He is also Special Advisor to the President of WAN-IFRA.

  • Executive Director at Photonics Finland

    Juha Purmonen is currently executive director at Photonics Finland. Juha works closely with industrial photonic companies to ensure an innovative and competitive ecosystem by maintaining a strong network and acting as a catalyst and facilitator for technological and commercial advancement. 

    Photonics Finland is a technology cluster that drives the photonics industry in Finland. It connects Finnish photonics companies, research centres, and public authorities.
    Photonics Finland supports the development of the photonics field from basic research through to the deployment and market launch of products. Photonics Finland develops new business and research opportunities, and helps realize the full potential of the photonics industry in Finland in sectors like health care, energy efficiency, safety, manufacturing, and sustainability.

  • Senior Vice President, Helsingin Sanomat, Helsinki

    Pettri joined Helsingin Sanomat in 2008 as VP Digital from Nokia where he was Director Video Services in Nokia Services Business Unit since 1989.

  • Head of Digital, The Wall Street Journal, Asia – Pacific

    Meraj Qazi is the Head of Digital for The Wall Street Journal Asia-Pacific, leading commercial sales & strategy for the Journal’s digital products. Prior to Hong Kong, Meraj held a series of strategy & operations roles in NY, launching new products and leading the integration of print & digital commercial teams. Meraj began his career at Dow Jones in Dallas, TX and received a Bachelor’s degree from The College of New Jersey.

  • Director – Creative, Strategy, Hot Salsa Media

    After working for 10 years for the Home Office in London, Viv changed career direction from British Civil Servant to agency owner. Educated in London with a BA (Hons) Marketing & Advertising, and a more recent CAM Dip(CIM), Viv lifted her new advertising career in London on a few big brands, which she won on strategy prowess.

    After a few years, which included a couple years in New York and San Francisco, she returned to SA and joined a communications agency to head up their new advertising and design division. Viv built up a spread of local and international accounts, and developed and implemented, global strategies for their agencies in UK, USA and India.

    In 2002, Viv launched Hot Salsa Media. She is hands-on every day working on carefully-selected brands, chosen predominantly because she does her best work on brands she loves and believes in. Hot Salsa Media is also responsible for the strategy, creative and event management of their own brand, the Soweto Wine Festival, which celebrates 12 years in Soweto this year.

  • Digital Lead, BBC Africa, UK

    In her role as the Digital Lead for BBC World Service’s Africa Hub, Miriam Quansah oversees all the digital output from BBC Afrique (French for Africa), Pidgin, Afaan Oromo, Amharic, Tigrinya  BBC Gahuza (in Kinyarwanda/Kirundi), BBC Hausa, BBC Somali, BBC Swahili as well as BBC World Service’s English-language output for Africa.  She is also responsible for ensuring the hub’s digital platform strategy and ensuring that BBC Africa is keeping pace with the rapidly evolving virtual world.

    As part of the BBC World Service expansion, which will see an addition of six new languages to the existing six, Miriam leads on this regional development's digital strategy, which will see the establishment of two digital innovation hubs in Lagos and Nairobi.

    Miriam is also in charge of BBC Africa’s ‘Mobile First’ initiative that seeks to make sure that BBC World Service is making the most of Africa’s mobile revolution. Against this backdrop, she works to ensure that the BBC is giving audiences in Africa the news and information they need, where they need it and when they need it.

    Before being appointed to her current position, Miriam was BBC Africa Social Media Producer, leading social-media products and engagement for BBC Africa and driving social-media content creation and social-media strategy across BBC Africa platforms. 

    Miriam joined BBC World Service in 2008 as a radio producer.

    Ghanaian-born Miriam graduated from the London School of Oriental and African Studies in Anthropology of Media. 

  • Deputy Executive Editor, Publico, Portugal

    Diogo is helping the legacy title transition to a digital-first media operation with a renewed focus on multimedia and storytelling. Before that he was the creative director who launched Observador.pt in 2014, and a creative consultant for the launch of Eco.pt in 2016. Diogo is also the organizer of the Portuguese group of the Online News Association and the author of Manual de Jornalismo Digital, a guidebook for digital journalists (in Portuguese). He has over twenty years of experience as a journalist, a multimedia producer and a documentary director - and he is also a PhD Student in Digital Media.

  • Foreign Editor, The Straits Times

    Audrey Quek started her career in journalism as a sub-editor before taking up a Singapore Press Holdings scholarship to further her studies at the National University of Singapore.
    After completing her degree in political science, she joined the newspaper’s Foreign Desk and was initially tasked with editing its regional pages.
    She has also helped edit the Comment and Analysis and Forum pages in The Straits Times. In 2015, she became Foreign Editor. She and her team in the newsroom and a network of correspondents in key cities around the globe are responsible for the coverage of world news in The Straits Times.

  • Senior Librarian, National Library

    Barbara is from the National Library Advocacy & Statutory Functions team that oversees the compliance of Legal Deposit in Singapore. Her work also covers the selection of donation, gifts and exchange materials for Lee Kong Chian Reference Library (LKCRL). In research and writing, she had co-authored a paper on “The value of print literacy in the education of young children in Singapore” which was published in The international journal of the book, volume 1 (2003). Internally, she had contributed a story on her alma mater in NLB’s flagship publication BiblioAsia titled “MGS memories at 11 Mount Sophia”. Prior to joining the library profession, she was in the editorial team of the Pioneer magazine and Pointer journal at the Ministry of Defence.

  • CEO & co-founder, NewsWhip, Dublin

    Paul is CEO and co-founder of NewsWhip, a technology company based in Dublin and New York. NewsWhip tracks the stories, videos and other content getting engagement online each day. Their technology is used by publishers including BuzzFeed, Bloomberg, The Washington Post, BBC, Yahoo!, Die Welt, Bild, The Guardian, and Expressen. Before founding NewsWhip, Paul worked as a lawyer in New York, but asks that you not hold that against him.

     

  • CEO & co-founder, NewsWhip, Dublin

    Paul is CEO and co-founder of NewsWhip, a technology company based in Dublin and New York. NewsWhip tracks the stories, videos and other content getting engagement online each day. Their technology is used by publishers including BuzzFeed, Bloomberg, The Washington Post, BBC, Yahoo!, Die Welt, Bild, The Guardian, and Expressen. Before founding NewsWhip, Paul worked as a lawyer in New York, but asks that you not hold that against him.

     

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