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Leadership Team

Group executives

Our executives combine strong management skills with a proven track record in the industry and specialist market insight.

Sam Darwish

Sam Darwish

Chairman and Group CEO

Sam Darwish has over 20 years’ experience in the telecommunications industry and is the co-founder of IHS Towers. Previously he served as the Deputy Managing Director of CELIA, Nigeria’s first GSM operator. He was also the Vice Chairman and Director of Projects at Lintel, an international GSM operator, responsible for global project implementation in West Africa and the Middle East. Before that he was the Network Chief Engineer for Libancell (currently Touch), Lebanon’s first GSM network operator.

Sam founded IHS Towers, the largest towerco in the EMEA region by tower count, in 2001. Under Sam’s leadership, IHS Towers has launched an award-winning sustainability program and the IHS Academy, a world-class online training portal. The sustainability strategy is tailored to each country’s operations and aligned with four pillars: education, ethics, environment and people. These are testament to Sam’s commitment to constant innovation and new skill development which will ultimately strengthen local business ecosystems throughout the emerging markets.

Additionally, Sam founded Singularity Investments which invests in various early to mid-stage companies in Africa and the US. Singularity also supports incubator programs for aspiring tech entrepreneurs, serves as a mentor to business executives and contributes to various community projects in Africa. Moreover, Sam has several active and passive interests in various investments and projects.

Sam is a US citizen, a member of the Wilson Center Global Advisory Council and frequent speaker at telecom industry events. He is a graduate, with distinction, of the American University of Beirut with a bachelor’s Engineering Degree in Computer Communications.

Sam was awarded the CNBC Africa Business Leader of the Year Award for West Africa in 2016 and the TowerXchange Lifetime Achievement Award in 2017 for his founding and leadership of IHS Towers. Please find a link to a Forbes profile here.

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William S Saad

William S. Saad

Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and Co-founder

William is responsible for shaping IHS Towers' long-term technology vision and driving innovation across the company.

William has over 20 years’ experience in the telecommunications industry. He has played a key part in the development and roll-out of Nigeria’s telecom sector, including building the first turnkey sites that marked the beginning of the country’s GSM revolution.

Before establishing IHS Towers, William was the Operations Director at CELIA Motophone Nigeria Limited. His responsibilities included designing, implementing and operating Motophone GSM, PNL and V-SAT networks in Nigeria. His achievements at CELIA include successfully implementing in 24 months the planned network expansion for one million subscribers.

Before joining CELIA, William served as project manager at Lintel SAL, where he designed and implemented GSM projects, and was a Site Survey and Implementation Engineer at Libancell.

William has a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer and Communication Engineering from the American University of Beirut.

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Adam Walker

Adam Walker

Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Adam has 15 years’ experience as the Group CFO of three separate UK listed companies.

Prior to joining IHS Towers, Adam was the Group CFO of GKN plc, one of the world’s leading engineering and manufacturing companies in the Aerospace and Automotive markets with operations in 30 countries. During his four year tenure, Adam was also CEO of one of GKN’s four divisions, GKN Land Systems, for 18 months.

Previously Adam was the Group CFO of Informa Plc for six years. Informa is a global leader in the fields of business intelligence, exhibitions and academic publishing. For five years prior to that, Adam was the Group CFO of National Express Group Plc, a leading transport provider across the UK, Continental Europe, North Africa, North America and the Middle East.

Adam qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1988 with Deloitte and spent ten years in the professional world of audit, corporate finance and banking before moving into the corporate world.

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Mustafa Tharoo

Mustafa Tharoo

Executive Vice President and General Counsel

Mustafa is a leading corporate and commercial lawyer. He has over 15 years of experience in M&A and project transactions Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Zambia, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and Sudan. 

Mustafa's primary fields of practice include banking and finance, property law and mergers and acquisitions. He has acted for and advised lenders on obtaining, perfecting and enforcing securities, and on reviewing and drafting loan and facility agreements.

Mustafa has also undertaken a variety of private and public company commercial work. He has acted for and advised vendors and purchasers on the acquisition and disposal of shares and assets. This included undertaking detailed due diligence investigations and drafting and negotiating share purchase, asset sale, joint venture, partnership, and distribution and marketing agreements.

Before joining IHS Towers, Mustafa was a Consultant at ADEPT Chambers in Tanzania. Previously, he served as a consultant at Ringo & Associates in Tanzania and a Partner at Anjarwalla & Khanna in Kenya. 

Mustafa is a member of the Law Society of Kenya. He is a frequent speaker at seminars and conferences on various aspects of law and investment.

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David Ordman

David Ordman

Senior Vice President and Deputy Chief Financial Officer

David Ordman is the Deputy Chief Financial Officer of IHS Group and manages the finance, treasury, procurement and reporting functions. He joined the company in 2012.  

David trained at Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC) in the UK, and has over 20 years’ experience working in international telecoms and infrastructure companies.

David is a member of the senior leadership team and acts as a financial adviser, assisting with all financial planning and economic modeling. Other responsibilities include membership of the finance, audit and investment committees and the Board of Directors.

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Mohamad Darwish

Mohamad Darwish

Senior Vice President, IHS Nigeria CEO and Co-founder

Mohamad has over 15 years’ experience working in the telecommunications sector and is the IHS Nigeria Chief Executive Officer overseeing IHS Towers’ largest market. 

He is a Co-founder of IHS Towers, has worked in various finance and technical functions and served as the IHS Nigeria Business Development Director and Deputy CEO before becoming the Nigeria CEO. Mohamad is responsible for growing IHS Nigeria’s operations and further strengthening its position as the leading tower company in Nigeria. He oversees the development of the IHS Nigeria strategic plan, the roll out of new sales strategies, and manages various key relationships with clients, regulators, ministries and NGOs.

As a member of the IHS Finance and Banking, Risk Management, and Ethics and Compliance committees, Mohamad also focuses on defining IHS Towers’ strategic plans on a group level while ensuring the Company is fully compliant with international standards and best practices. 

Mohamad has a Master of Engineering in Applied Operation Research from Cornell University, a Master of Business Administration with Honours from Rollins College, and a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from the American University of Beirut. He is also fluent in both Arabic and English.

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Ayotade Oyinola

Ayotade Oyinlola

Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer

Nigerian born and raised, Ayotade brings over 20 years of HR and telecoms industry experience to the IHS management team.

Ayotade most recently served as Millicom Services UK Head of HR for Africa and Europe, overseeing operations throughout Africa, as well as the corporate offices in London, Luxembourg and Sweden. He also has extensive experience in driving international and African talent acquisition and development at various executive and operational levels within the telecoms sector. Previously, he served as Ericsson’s West Africa HR Director and the Sub-Sahara Africa Director for Learning and Development. In addition, Ayotade has held a number of senior positions at Shell Petroleum, Bristow Helicopters, Atlasco Technologies and Resourcery Limited.

Ayotade holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree (Electrical & Computer Engineering) from the Federal University of Technology, Minna; an Executive MBA (Strategy, Human & Organizational Behaviour and Strategic HR) from the Lagos Business School; a diploma in Entrepreneurship from the IESE Business School, Barcelona; Executive Leadership Development diplomas from Harvard Business School and the Wharton Business School; a Leadership and Public Policy diploma from the Harvard Kennedy School; a certificate in Strategic Human Resources from University of Cornell’s School of Industrial and Labour Relations, and a Talent Management diploma from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Ayotade is also a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development in the UK, and a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Managers in Nigeria. He is married and has three children

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Steve Howden

Steve Howden

Senior Vice President and Deputy Chief Financial Officer

As Deputy CFO, Steve is responsible for mergers and acquisitions, related equity and debt financings, the treasury function, financial planning and analysis, in addition to investor relations and communications. He joined IHS Towers in 2013 and, since then, has executed over $5.5 billion of capital raisings and 14 transactions. His role is to help develop and execute IHS Towers’ long-term growth strategy.

Steve has approximately 15 years of corporate finance experience and has completed more than 16 African tower transactions and 12 financings. Previously, he was a member of the Ernst & Young M&A department and in the Corporate Restructuring team at Ernst & Young and Andersen.

Steve is a Chartered Accountant who trained at Ernst & Young in London and has a BSc in Business Administration from the University of Bath in the UK.

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