Shant Oknayan, Group Commercial Director, MENA at Facebook Shant Oknayan is currently the Group Commercial Director at Facebook in the Middle East and North Africa, where he leads efforts to enable businesses in the region to scale growth and engage with consumers on Facebook, Instagram and the family of apps. Shant’s current focus is in retail, FMCG, telecom, technology, media and real estate, and previously also covered Facebook’s focus on ecommerce and digital services clients. Shant has over 18 years of experience in leading strategy & business development, with subject-matter expertise in digital and investment strategies for governments and corporations, having most recently headed up Google’s market development for small & medium businesses in the Middle East and North Africa. Shant’s understanding of the start-up space saw him co-found GlamBox, the first and leading beauty ecommerce company in the MENA region with venture backing from regional institutional investors, and nominated a “Most Promising Start-up in the UAE” by Forbes Middle East in 2015, 2016 and 2017. GlamBox was acquired by a consortium of Saudi Arabia-based investors in late 2017. Shant was also Google’s Head of Strategy & Operations in the Middle East and North Africa, and prior to that spent 8 years as a management consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton and Strategy&, leading business technology and digital strategy projects for governments, large organisations, and investment firms both in the Middle East and Europe. Nominated a “Top 50 SME Executive” in 2013 by Start-Up Arabian Business, Shant holds an MBA from MIT’s Sloan School of Management and a Masters with honours in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Imperial College London.