Since beginning his tenure, Mr. Al-Ghamdi has been driving the transformation of the Saudi Stock Exchange with the aim of lying down and fortifying the necessary foundational cornerstones to enable the organization to honor its critical role at the heart of the Kingdom economy.
Although the Saudi Stock Exchange currently stands as the 7th largest emerging market exchange and is considered the largest and most liquid platform in the Middle East and North Africa, fundamental changes have been enacted over the last two years to prepare it to execute its more ambitions aspirations over the coming period.
Over the last two years the Exchange has undergone a phased reorganization, changes in leadership, a realignment of its long-term strategy, and an evolution of its culture and value system, with the aim of emerging both stronger and wiser, and ultimately more able to face the challenges and seize the opportunities that lie ahead.
Although most of the significant news coming out of the Exchange over the last year have revolved around, amongst other things, the recent deployment of the NASDAQ X-Stream INET trading platform, or around the Kingdom gradual opening to qualified foreign investors; which stakeholders and policymakers expect to drive up standards of corporate governance among listed companies and improve knowledge and research in the market; Mr. Al-Ghamdi believes that these achievements are eclipsed by the way his team of colleagues have responded to the dramatic organizational and cultural changes that have occurred within the organization over the last two years. Based on a recent independent survey, and despite these significant changes, overall employee satisfaction has improved by 40% since his arrival in areas of empowerment, engagement, respect and recognition, and organizational direction, amongst others, with the greatest improvement witnessed in the category of confidence in leadership.
On winning the award, Mr. Al-Ghamdi commented: “I am honored to be named MENA CEO of the Year, but this award is simply a reflection of the dedication and tireless efforts of my talented team of colleagues at the Exchange, and the spirit of cooperation we have seen from the Capital Market Authority and our other stakeholders. We have all been working to strengthen the foundations of the Exchange, harmonize with global best practices, and position the Saudi capital market as the regional market of choice for both local and international participants.”
“I am also thankful to my board of directors who have given me the necessary flexibility, space, and support to shape this critical component of the Saudi economy to take its natural role as narrator to, and facilitator of, the Kingdom capital market development.”
“We are delighted with the progress to date, but it has simply been a continuation of a much longer journey. I am looking forward to working with everyone in the market to establish ourselves as one of the world most dynamic emerging market investment destinations.”