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Our Team

 

 

Michael Lee

Michael Lee 

Senior Advisor and Member Advisory Board

Michael is the CEO of Global Management Strategic Focus Pty Ltd specialising in business advisory, commercial negotiations, acquisitions, divestments and business turnaround. He is an Advisory Councillor of the Australian Industry Group (AIG) and a Councillor/Treasurer of the Australian Institute of International Affairs (AIIA).

Michael is the Chairman of the Advisory Board of Autopak-Vetlab Group, a manufacturer and serves on the Advisory Board of Web Profits, an online Marketing Strategy company. He also mentors 8 Partners/Senior Managers at Crowe Horwath a Chartered Accounting Firm.

In 2015 he was appointed as the Reviewer of the Export Market Development Grants Scheme by the Minister of Trade & Investment, the Hon Mr Andrew Robb AO, MP.

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He joined the Zip Industries Group in 2001 as Group Finance Director and was promoted to Chief Operating Officer during the Group Financial Crisis (GFC) in 2008. He was also instrumental in opening offices in New Zealand, Malaysia and the UAE for the Group and as part of the Senior Management Team in building the UK and Australian business to what it is today. The company enjoyed double digit compound annual growth in both top and bottom line during his time at the company. He retired as CEO in December 2014.

Prior to working at ZIP, he worked as Finance Director at Nick Scali Furniture Pty Ltd (1999 to 2001) and as the Operations & Finance Director at Cenovis Pty Ltd (1989 to 1996) – both leading Australian brands in their own industry.

He lived in New Zealand for 15 years and was the Group Accountant of the Fletcher Challenge Group, New Zealand’s largest Company.He commenced his career in audit in 1977 and was Audit Supervisor at KPMG Wellington, New Zealand.

Lydia Santoso

Lydia Santoso 

Senior Consultant, Indonesia

Lydia specialises in the niche area of Indonesian-Australian law. She is an Australian qualified lawyer and Public Notary, having obtained a combined Arts/Law degree from the University of New South Wales. Lydia speaks fluent Indonesian and English and has worked in law firms both in Sydney and Jakarta. Lydia is well known in the Indonesian community in Sydney and has amassed a large number of Indonesian clients both in Australia and Indonesia. Lydia has acted for many Australian businesses with interests in Indonesia, many Indonesians living in Australia and Indonesian business owners located in the greater Sydney area, Indonesian property developers.

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Being half Indonesian and half Australian, Lydia understands the Indonesian culture and provides valuable assistance to Australians who are unfamiliar with the Indonesian culture, language and the Indonesian Legal System. Similarly Lydia advises Indonesian nationals who do not understand the Australian legal system fully or who do not speak the English language. Having worked in Indonesia, Lydia has gained the knowledge and skill in how to operate within the unique Indonesian legal system. Lydia has close relationships with Australian Government both at the Federal and State levels, and the Indonesian Consulate. She has provided advice as country expert for companies who are looking to enter the Indonesian market.

Lydia’s work in the Australian-Indonesia relations is widely recognised by the Australian Government, having just been recently appointed by the Government to be a director of the prestigious Australia Indonesia Institute and a member of the selection panel for the New Colombo Plan 2014 & 2015.  Lydia also holds the title of Advisor to the National Board of the AIBC, Committee member of the IDN NSW Chapter and is the current Vice President of the Australia Indonesia Business Council.

Barnaby Caddy

Barnaby Caddy 

Senior Consultant, Indonesia

Barnaby has worked for fifteen years on international affairs, with particular expertise in Indonesia. Barnaby studied Indonesian language, politics and culture at university, including semesters in West Timor and Lombok. He started his career working on Australia-Indonesia foreign policy with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and the Department of Defence. He later managed international development assistance programs on behalf of government, the United Nations, international non-government organisations (NGOs) and private consultancy firms.

Barnaby moved into the aid sector in response to seeing first-hand the devastation in Aceh following the 2004 Boxing Day Tsunami. He has led projects across the Indonesian archipelago (Aceh, Yogyakarta, Lombok, Flores and West Timor), including as Country Director with international NGOs, and later as Emergency Operations Manager at the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID). He also represented the Australian Government in Jakarta on disaster-response coordination efforts.

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As a fluent Bahasa Indonesia speaker, Barnaby brings a deep knowledge of Indonesian culture to his cross-cultural consulting work. Barnaby’s cross-cultural experience has also been developed through living and working in diverse cultures across South East Asia, Liberia, and North Korea where he recently worked as a consultant to the United Nations.

Most recently, Barnaby has provided consultancy advice and training on the complexities of managing foreign projects, particularly the softer skills needed for successful business operations in difficult foreign environments.

Stacey Martin

Stacey Martin 

Senior Consultant

Stacey Martin is known as a strategic connector. She founded the Expat Advisors Community network for professionals with internationally connected clients, a platform for financial and professional services ongoing business engagement with Asia.

With a Wealth Advisory career spanning twenty years providing financial strategy and investment advice to Company Directors, executives and SME’s, increasing global mobility saw the development of a niche in cross-jurisdictional wealth planning. Her paper “How to maximise offshore assignments: Financial strategies for Australian expatriates” highlights issues to consider prior to departure, whilst offshore and importantly repatriating wealth for return.

Today, Stacey assists companies looking to do business in China to navigate culture, facilitate strategic connections and provide professional services introductions.

Hamish Blanche 

Senior Consultant

Hamish is Principal of Netherfield Investments, a diversified investment company serving the interests of private investors, family offices and pension funds. He has more than 20 years’ experience in investment markets in Australia and the UK.

As an investment manager, Hamish has a long term track record of benchmark out-performance for his portfolios. He also has extensive experience in capital market transactions and placements both in listed and unlisted markets.

He began his financial services career in 1995 as a private client adviser at Greig Middleton & Co where he specialised in UK equities and government bonds. He moved to Australia and joined Wilson HTM in 2001, where he later became a partner, a firm heavily involved with  mid-cap and smaller companies . In 2012 Hamish moved to Ord Minnett and spent 4 years as a senior investment adviser before establishing Netherfield Investments in 2016.

Rob Henderson Smart 

Senior Adviser, Investment

Rob started his career in stockbroking and has been involved in corporate finance, property finance, private equity investments and corporate advisory work for over 25 years.

At various times during this period he held a number of equity interests in companies to whom he consulted ranging in size from $2M to $50M in sales. In the course of his work and investment activities, Rob has been involved in many facets of business operations and property development transactions in hands-on roles and as a corporate adviser.

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This experience has given Rob a unique insight and the skills and knowledge the following areas:

  • Business strategy
  • Raising debt and equity for companies
  • Property development and property finance (both as lender and investor)
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Structured finance, Private Equity and debt finance
  • Identifying key business issues and value drivers
  • FMCG brands
  • Sales, distribution and business development
  • General management, supply chain, procurement and finance
  • Manufacturing and wholesale trade
  • International Hotels
  • Early stage and start-up companies
  • Working in SE Asia and China market

Rob holds a postgraduate degree in Business Administration and a Masters of Business Administration (MBA).

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Susan Salzbrenner  

Cross Cultural Consultant

Susan Salzbrenner is a Cross Cultural Consultant. She supports individuals, teams, and organizations to navigate complex, multicultural environments in times of change. Her areas of expertise include organizational culture, diversity & inclusion, cross-cultural and virtual team management, and global leadership.

The native German has gained work experience in talent development, compensation and benefits, as well as international project management both within multinational corporations and consulting businesses. She has lived and worked in Germany, USA, Australia, France, China, and currently resides in Copenhagen, Denmark. Having tried (and failed at) many languages, she communicates with her clients in German, English, French, Danish and adds a bit of Portuguese thanks for her Brazilian husband.

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With a dual master degree in clinical and organizational psychology, she is equipped to coach business professionals and examine organizational needs and develop transformative solutions. Susan also holds a post-graduate degree in intercultural business communication and has conducted research on gender pay gap in the consulting industry as well as effects of multiculturalism in Australia. Her interest in both neuroscience, mindfulness and behavior economics means that she brings a blended approach to her work to facilitate long-term learning and development.

Barry Dawes

Barry Dawes 

Senior Advisor, Resources

Barry Dawes has had over 35 years experience in the financial markets in senior positions in investment management, stock and commodity analysis and corporate finance in blue chip organisations such as BT Australia, Deutsche Bank and Macquarie Bank.

He was also the founding Managing Director of Martin Place Securities in 2000 and over the next 13 years there was manager of over 35 IPOs and other equity capital raising totaling over A$1,000m.

He has been an internationally ranked securities analyst and has presented at many conferences around the world.

He is a geologist by training and is a Fellow of the Asus IMM (CP) and a Master of the Securities Association of Australia.

Leonie Tillman

Leonie Tillman 

Senior Consultant

Leonie has worked in cross-cultural communication for over 18 years. She is passionate about workplace diversity and navigating companies through the challenges diversity and communication bring towards achieving the heights of creativity, productivity and problem solving in multinational teams.

She speaks French, Dutch and some Spanish after living and working in Europe for 5 years. However, in the past 13 years, she has focused on diverse teams within Australian where she has gained a broad cultural knowledge and expertise in the nuances of communication and how conflict is created, connection is achieved or broken down and how understanding is reached.

She has a strong appreciation of the main cultural and communication challenges that are faced by executives, managers and other staff members and has developed strategies for working more cohesively within teams and companies.

Jack Lee

Jack Lee 

Senior Consultant

Business runs in Jack’s blood. Jack was born in a business family which gave him the opportunity to immerse into business since at very young age. Jack is an entrepreneur and investor himself. In the last 20 years Jack has founded an online company, a language school, 2 IT companies and invested into a number of private companies.

Jack has gained inside knowledge of both Asian and Australian business cultures through working and living in multiple countries. Jack graduated from Monash University, Australia. The first 10 years in his career were in Malaysia and Singapore working for some biggest financial institutions and consulting firms such as OCBC Bank and Capgemini before moving to Sydney in 2004.

The subsequent 10 years in Sydney, he had worked has an independent consultant for Optus, Westpac Bank and Macquarie Bank managing and delivering over 50 projects of different kinds before leaving his cooperate life in 2013.

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Since 2013, Jack has been working with Benchmark Business Sales as the most experienced Asian-born business broker in the team specialising in migrations through business investments, attracting and facilitating sales and investments from mainland China.

Recently in June 2016, he has just established Jataroo International Distribution helping Australians’ food produce raising capital and market entry to China and Malaysia.

He is passionate about working in this cross-cultural business space. He loves challenges because he enjoys solving problems and achieving win-win outcomes for all parties. In his free time, he loves spending time with his wife and son.

Connect with Jack on LinkedIn.

Hesham Salah 

Senior Consultant

Hesham has 3 decades of experience in international business development, both in the government and the private sectors. Hesham has founded the International Enterprise Group (IEG Consulting) in 2011 in Dubai, UAE. Hesham is focused on strategic consulting through business intelligence, investment planning and international trade development.

Hesham has vast experience in international economics and trade through his 16 years with NZTE, the New Zealand government’s economic development agency, as their Dubai-based EMEA regional business development manager.

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His experience in marketing and strategy in the foodservice industry was earned with Americana, the largest food franchise operation in the region.
Hesham’s projects are currently covering key technology sectors such as Business Intel, IoT, AI, health-tech, cross-border investment and technology transfer.

Jemima_Riley

Jemima Riley 

General Manager

Jemima Riley is an international business and marketing consultant, with a particular interest in Australia’s relations with the Middle East and China.

Jemima has worked across a range of projects that build cultural and economic bridges between Australia and overseas markets, particularly the Middle East. She was Project Director of the Australian Arab Business Forum in 2014 and 2015, and previously managed the NSW Chapter of the Australia Arab Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Jemima holds a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Politics from Macquarie University, and a Masters of Commerce majoring in International Business at the Australian School of Business, University of New South Wales.

Connect with Jemima on LinkedIn or Tweet @JemimaRiley

Erin McSweeney

Erin McSweeney 

Research Analyst

Erin McSweeney has a diverse, internationally-focused professional background and a strong interest in the cultural, economic and regulatory frameworks which facilitate global commercial exchanges. She has recently completed an internship as an assistant trade advisor with the French Embassy Trade Commission – Business France where she worked on projects assisting exporters to form business partnerships in Australia and New Zealand. She also works as a paralegal at a bilingual commercial law practice and previously was a researcher for a market-leading legal recruitment company, specialising in international recruitment.

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In her final year of a combined Law and International Studies degree at the University of Technology, Sydney, Erin will complete an honours thesis on the position of developing countries in The World Trade Organisation in 2016.

Having undertaken a year of exchange studying French language, history and literature at the Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne, Erin possesses a global outlook and high-level cross-cultural responsiveness. She speaks French at an intermediate level.

In her role at Dearin & Associates as a Trade and Economic Research Intern, she wishes to build upon her understanding of trade and investment networks between Australia and markets in Asia and the Middle East and diversify her consulting experience.

Alex Allen

Alex Allen 

UAE Representative

Alex Allen is Dearin & Associates’ United Arab Emirates Representative, and is also the director of Azzil Trading which is a UAE registered company located in Dubai, specialising in corporate advisory, international trade investment, supply chain & logistics servicing the GCC, APAC & ISMEA regions.

Alex is recognized as being a global-connector and conduit for international trade investment and logistics within the industry; playing a pivotal role in engaging and consulting with governments and business leaders in matters of international trade and investment, border compliance, macro/micro logistics verticals, supply chain optimization, start-up’s and turn-key projects in established and emerging markets.

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Alex works with top integrators and SME’s alike, influencing and driving development of best-in-class supply chain, logistics and technology infrastructures. His experience includes senior business leadership roles within the B2B & B2C sectors in international freight forwarding, express, foreign trade, M&A’s in the Logistics industry.

Alex Allen heads Logistics Executive Group Global Consulting Services, which includes JAFZA country representative for trade facilitation between Australia/ New Zealand and the United Arab Emirates.

Nizar Bustani

Nizar Bustani 

Senior Financial Analyst

A well versed financial analyst and investment banker who is connected to a broad range of corporate finance transactions; business planning, corporate preparation for Initial Public Offering (IPO), Initial Public Offering (IPO) prospectus modelling, corporate valuations, due diligence for corporate acquisition purposes, developing Private Placement Memorandums (PPM) and start-up company valuations based in Australia, Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia to name a few. Nizar also established and led a capital markets buy side equity research initiative.

Nizar’s skillset consist of financial modelling, valuation of shares, advanced analysis of financial statements, benchmarking corporate performance and simulating hypothetical business environment change and its impact on bottom line net income, share values and cash flows.

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Previously employed by SAI Global property, Arab banking corporation, Tuhama Investments and occupied the role of a supervisor in the Transaction Advisory Services (TAS) Middle East division of Ernst & Young consulting.

Nizar holds a bachelor of business administration, master of applied finance, diploma of financial services (RG146) and passed level I of Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA)© designation.

Agnijita Roy

Agnijita Roy 

Cross-Cultural Consultant – India

Agnijita is a cross-cultural consultant from India and holds substantial years of experience on Indian market and business culture. Agnijita completed her management studies in IILM Graduate School of Management, Greater Noida, India. Her initial years of career started with Business Development where she got immense opportunities to travel across India and learn more about the differences in market characteristics, customer relationship building strategies and sales strategies region wise.

While working in the Electrical and Switchgear industry for continuous three years, she also gained a fair understanding about the working of manufacturing and real estate industries in India.

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She also had a fair inclination towards learning different cultures and languages which helped her to start afresh as a Country Specialist Coordinator with Aperian Global, a cross cultural consulting and web tools firm where she was managing the Country Specific Subject Matter Experts for all the Cross cultural Consulting programs in APAC and EMEA. Moving forward she was managing the Global Country Specialist Department with Aperian Global and her experience in interviewing and on boarding Cultural Specialists from different countries exposed her to the cultures of almost 80 countries.

Her major contribution was in identifying the best Experts providing support and advice in the fields of country Specific effective communication skills, people management skills, leadership Skills, Core Values, Business Protocols, Customer and Supplier Relationship management, Women in Business, Business ethics, LGBT Communities, Government Structure, Culture, Customs and Knowledge transfer.

Pouyan Afshar

Pouyan Afshar 

Senior Consultant, Iran

Pouyan Afshar specialises in providing advice on doing business in Iran.

He has a deep understanding of Iranian culture and commerce practices, having been Iranian born and raised and having worked extensively with Iranian businesses both in Iran and abroad. As a lawyer, he brings experience in strategic planning and of operating in the Iranian business and legal environment.

As the principal of Caspian Capital, he focuses on assisting businesses wishing to invest or deploy in Iran in the energy, agricultural, financial services and technology industries.

David Collins

David Collins 

Senior Consultant, China

David Collins has a broad background and experience in Chinese culture and doing business in China.

He completed a Bachelor of Business, Bachelor of Arts (International Studies) Majoring in Chinese Language and Culture at UTS and was the first and only student in his year group to select Shanghai, China as his in-country studies destination.

During David’s six and half years in Shanghai he achieved fluency in Mandarin as well as operated a wholly owned foreign enterprise. In December 2008, when shortly after the GFC hit, David established his own business that serviced clients such as KPMG Greater China, the University of Michigan and Dash Brands (then licensees of Boost Juice, Gloria Jeans Coffee, Dominos Pizza, Subway Sandwiches China).

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David grew his business, Inhouse Web, to a contingent of 12 full-time staff including 6 foreign employees. David has also been an active participant in a Chinese community organization for 19 years and is married to a Chinese National.

In May 2013, David returned to Australia where he worked with EY’s Digital/IT performance improvement team and is now CEO of Toowards a digital business within the Lonsec Fiscal Group of companies.

Luca Postiglione

Luca Postiglione 

Senior Consultant, Europe and the US

Luca is a management consultant and marketing professional with over 15 years experience in numerous sectors in Europe, the US and Australia. He founded and managed a luxury goods export business based in Florence, was Head of Marketing for an international jewelry company in Australia and is now General Manager of a Sydney based marketing consulting business. His main areas of expertise are sales and marketing strategy, strategic planning and execution, financial analysis, brand development and management, and cultural alignment. Although he consults across various sectors, his main expertise is in luxury and lifestyle goods/services.

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Luca holds a Bachelor of Science in International Relations and Politics, and a Master in Business Administration from the University of Southampton in the UK. He is also a recipient of the ECIS Award for International Understanding. His passion for strategic marketing is contagious and his knowledge and experience in international business are extensive.

Connect with Luca via LinkedIn.

Michael Barron

Michael Barron 

Middle East Energy Specialist

Michael Barron has more than 25 years experience analysing, living and working in the Middle East and North Africa including engagement at the highest levels of government. He has more than 12 years experience working as a government and public affairs manger for the major gas company BG Group with assignments in Egypt, Oman and on the Gaza Marine project. Michael studied Arabic at the University of Edinburgh, including spending time in Cairo. He has also worked for Middle East Broadcasting, Control Risks Group and Eurasia Group.

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At BG Group, Michael also gained experience in South East Asia. He was a member of the project team for Myanmar country entry from the first visit to the country through to submission of a successful bid for four blocks in the 2013 offshore licence round. He also undertook a short term assignment in Bangkok providing government relations support for a proposed major business change and advocating for increased transparency in the upstream oil and gas sector.

Michael also has an in depth knowledge of transparency issues, particularly the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI) and EU legislation in this area. He managed this issue for BG Group, chaired an industry task force and served as an industry representative on the UK’s EITI multi-stakeholder group.

Michael has particular expertise in government relations strategies to manage complex issues such as country entry (and exit), major negotiations and disputes and navigating through complex political situations.

Masin Karim

Masin Karim 

Associate – Sydney, Australia

Born a short walk away from Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Club to an Arab father and an English mother, only to move to Saudi Arabia 40 days later, Masin was destined to become a bridge of Western-Arab relations. Havin completed his journey through the highest of English-American education, including a civil engineering degree from University College London, Masin moved to Dubai, UAE where he became an entrepreneur.

Read More Masin’s international experience and his ability to connect with the people of Arabia proved priceless during the conception, development, and launch of his Dubai-based boutique honey company Balqees. A success story in the GCC, Balqees now has fourteen outlets across the UAE and has redefined how honey is sold amongst a very traditional people.

Now based in Sydney, Masin’s business and cultural experience spanning four continents and five countries makes him an asset to any business wanting to embark into business in Arabia world. 

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Silke Irmscher 

Cross-cultural Expert & Communication Psychologist

Silke Irmscher is a cross-cultural expert and communication psychologist specialising in Indonesian culture. Originally from Germany, she has lived and worked in Indonesia for more than 15 years.

Silke has a diverse background, having come from an Indonesian-Germany family and lived in a Javanese village community in the suburbs of Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Cross-cultural communication is intrinsic to both her professional and everyday life.

Silke is fluent in German, English and Indonesian and speaks some Javanese, Spanish and Russian – languages that she has learned along the way in Europe, South America and Asia.

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She researched Javanese culture, organized cultural programs for the Goethe-Institute Jakarta and worked with the development aid program of the German International Cooperation (GIZ) throughout Indonesia.

In recent years she has supported international organizations and companies in Indonesia with cross-cultural training, coaching and team development to enhance communication and productivity among diverse workforces.

Silke has always been fascinated by cultural exchange. Her passion is to encourage managers and experts in international business embrace cultural diversity for the benefit of both their teams and their own personal development.

Ghenwa Masri

Ghenwa Masri 

Executive and Marketing Assistant to the Managing Director

Ghenwa joined Dearin & Associates in 2014 as a Marketing and Communications Intern, where she worked across a range of marketing projects including the 2014 Qatar International Businesswomen’s Forum and the 2015 Australian Arab Businesswomen’s Forum. She re-joined the team in 2016 as an Executive and Marketing Assistant to the Managing Director.

Ghenwa is of Lebanese origin, having been born in Beirut and raised in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates, where she acquired her High School Diploma from the International School of Choueifat. She continued her Education in Beirut at the Lebanese American University (LAU), completing a Bachelor Degree in Business Marketing and a Masters of Business Administration in Management and Marketing.

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She worked at the Lebanese American University (LAU) as a Post Office Assistant and a Graduate and Academic Assistant in the Department of Economics and Finance. Ghenwa was also a part time Marketing Instructor at the Arts Sciences and Technology University in Lebanon (AUL) where she taught Consumer Behavior. She has four years of banking experience in Bankmed – Lebanon as a Customer Service Representative and has successfully completed the Lebanese Financial Regulations exam held by Banque du Liban (Central Bank of Lebanon).

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