Roland Berger’s Digital & Entrepreneurship leader Elias Aad moves to Riyadh office

02 November 2023 3 min. read
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The regional head of Roland Berger’s Digital & Entrepreneurship practice, Elias Aad, has relocated to Saudi Arabia with the remit to help the firm capture the rapidly unfolding opportunities in the kingdom’s digital strategy landscape.

Having relocated from the UAE to Riyadh, Elias Aad will focus on expanding Roland Berger’s Digital & Entrepreneurship practice in Saudi Arabia, both in terms of clients, partners and staff.

Santiago Castillo, Managing Partner of Roland Berger in the Middle East, said the move of the firm’s digital practice leader “reinforces its commitment to the Saudi market” and caters to the “Kingdom's ambitious vision of establishing itself as a worldwide frontrunner in the digital economy.”

Roland Bergers Digital leader Elias Aad moves to Riyadh office

From left to right: Santiago Castillo, Jan Gudat, Elias Aad, and Michael Caracache.

A pillar of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, the Digital Transformation Agenda aims to develop the necessary infrastructure and create an environment that enables the public, private and non-profit sectors to be fit for the digital future.

With the aim to leapfrog other nations on a wide range of digital performance indicators, spending on digital transformation has grown with double-digits to $34 billion this year, according to IDC data. The outlook is just as bright, for the 2023 to 2026 period further double-digit growth is expected.

“Saudi Arabia’s intensified efforts in embracing the digital age are evident. The country is doubling down on its digital economy, underscoring its intention to be at the forefront of technological evolution. Recognising the massive and transformative potential of the Kingdom’s digital economy in enabling growth and economic diversification, Roland Berger is keen to invest in its digital capabilities and provide a strategic contribution to the transformation.”

“With Elias on the ground in Riyadh, we can operate closer to our clients, understand their needs in real-time, and offer actionable, direct, and effective solutions,” Castillo added.

Aad added: “As Saudi Arabia rapidly transforms into a hub of digital innovation and sets the foundation of the future, we are more than excited to be part of this frontier of change and I am personally thrilled to be part of making the future – there is nothing more exciting than looking back 10 years from now and seeing the great transformation and growth, which I was part of – such opportunities are rare all over the world.”

One of Aad’s personal goals will be to champion the recruitment of talented Saudis into the Riyadh office. “This is one of my personal commitments and builds on the firm’s belief in the capabilities and potential of local talent, and its desire to blend international expertise with local insights.”

In parallel to his role at Roland Berger, Aad is the investment committee’s chairman of Saudi Angel Investors (a network of venture capitalists he co-founded in 2021) and a member of the KSA INSEAD alumni community. He previously was the President of the UAE INSEAD Alumni Association (2018 - 2021), leading the 5th largest INSEAD association globally.

In Saudi Arabia, Roland Berger is based in the King Abdullah Financial District.