The Expert in the Digital Revolution in Saudi Arabia
Started tinkering with gadgets at an early age; sought a tech education; is unassuming, focused, and dependable.
With a tick in all the right skills, Eyad Halawani displays all signs of being a tech geek. And recently, he was rewarded for his creativity and competence by being appointed as the Managing Director of the prestigious Crayon Arabia.
Young and debonair, Eyad is considered a trailblazer in the burgeoning IT industry of Saudi Arabia. A fact he credits to having started at the age of 15. “I started fixing my own PC when I was 15. Then I started doing it for friends, and eventually moved into software development.”
Following his passion, Eyad obtained his bachelor’s degree in computer engineering from the Riyadh College of Technology and his master’s degree in business administration from King Abdulaziz University.
Working simultaneously with studying, it didn’t take long for Eyad to discover his natural affinity for business. “I started working immediately after high school. I used to study from 7 am – 3 pm, then go to work for another 8 hours. I used to do this 5 days a week.” Eyad worked in multiple roles while he is studying as technical support, sales representative, and cashier, all of which taught him one important lesson: “How to manage his time well and get things done on time.”.
This period taught Eyad to depend on himself and respect all work. “Through my life experiences, I have become mindful. Each of us has a goal in life. And to achieve it, we must not waste time. It’s okay to have fun, but we must work hard to achieve success in our journey.”
An attitude of hard work and perseverance has taken Eyad places. In 20 years of managerial, operational and technical expertise, he has led local and multinational organizations at various stages of success and expansion, and held several executive positions in governmental entities and local and international companies. He has managed high-impact functions, established departments and sectors from scratch, and elevated their products and services.
He is renowned for overcoming varied challenges in the fields of Software development, e-government, digital transformation, and Product and Program Management in companies such as – Tamkeen Technologies, Technical and Vocational Training Corp., Mobily, and Elm.
With a twin passion for tech and entrepreneurship, Eyad is also an advocate of startups in the digital ecosystem. His background includes co-founding many small businesses and advising tech startups such as the Monh app, Fooditor and more. “I started many businesses. few failed while others succeeded. It made me learn how to help others and make them achieve.” For instance, in his previous role as vice president of products and services at Tamkeen Technologies, he built and launched Tamkeen’s products portfolio as a new revenue stream, a task considered near impossible by many.
This ability of deliverance is what led the multinational Crayon straight to Eyad. Impressed with his Tech+Business superiority, they appointed him as the Managing Director for Saudi Arabia.
Crayon is a global leader in innovation and customer centric IT services. And Saudi Arabia is one of their largest markets. This puts Eyad in line to lead big projects and build AI in Saudi Arabia. “Our mission is to pioneer digital transformation in the country and become a regional digital hub for our partners and customers.”
Even in the shadow of a global slowdown, Eyad is extremely buoyant about the future of the IT industry. “This is a phase of revolution in digital tech. Soon everything will depend on technology, everything will be related. It gives you knowledge, income and opportunities, and at least right now, there’s not enough talent in it,” says Eyad as a message for youngsters interested in tech.
Understanding how fast the industry changes, Eyad himself makes it a point to stay abreast. At the moment, he’s pursuing his Doctorate in business and management, while continuing to participate in executive leadership and development programs at reputed institutions such as Harvard Business School.
Reflecting on his passion, he tells us, “My passion is achievement. That is the fuel that keeps me going. And the knowledge that professionally, I’m on the right track. Right now that track is establishing new business; enabling others by coaching and investing in their business, and supporting organisations to grow.”
Tech geek or not, Eyad strikes a fine balance in his professional and personal life by spending quality family time.
Eyad is a Harley-Davidson biker, and a certified Rescue Diver, he enjoys traveling, and exploring new places. “I always take out time for family. And on weekends, I even manage to pursue my hobbies.” Unsurprisingly, the secret to Eyad’s successful micro-planning is a lister app. “I pre-plan my schedule a week and a month in advance so as not to falter. Honestly, I enjoy working!”