Team

Our collective experience enables us to drive investment in groundbreaking content, nurture regional talent, and connect with leading platforms globally. We are committed to telling stories differently and making a lasting impact in the industry.

Our collective experience enables us to drive investment in groundbreaking content, nurture regional talent, and connect with leading platforms globally. We are committed to telling stories differently and making a lasting impact in the industry.

Amanda Turnbull
CEO

With more than three decades of experience in the media industry, including six years as Managing Director at Warner Bros Discovery Middle East, Africa and Turkey and a diploma from the European Television Management Academy, Amanda holds a wealth of expertise in the Middle Eastern media sector. She is deeply committed to nurturing editorial and operational talent, ensuring the region’s potential is further unlocked and connected with leading regional and global platforms to gain the recognition it rightly deserves. During her time at Warner Bros Discovery, she launched businesses in Russia, Ukraine, Serbia, Slovenia, Turkey and South Africa, and optimized the newly acquired Fatafeat TV business to profitability within three years, doubling its topline revenue.
 
Amanda is a Founding Committee Member for the TECOM (Dubai Government) Media Incubator Programme and was the first female leader in the Middle East to be recognized at the International Women in Marketing Awards in 2018. She was also honoured for Innovation in the Professional Category at the 2018 Emirates Women Awards, which she used to build a mentoring network supporting businesswomen and fem-tech start-ups across the UAE. In 2019, Amanda was honoured as Broadcast Executive of the Year by her peers at the Digital Studio Middle East Awards, truly recognizing her exceptional contribution to the MENA broadcast industry.

Said Alam
Finance Manager

An exceptionally skilled Finance Manager, qualified ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants), and awarded a BSc Hons from Oxford Brookes University. Adept at increasing work process efficiency and profitability through functional and technical analysis. Said has over 15 years of experience in successfully managing finances, ensuring profitability and business growth in different industries with top-notch listed companies, including his last role at Rentokil Boecker, where he managed and led the finance team from 2018. Areas of expertise include strategic and financial planning, financial and management reporting, P&L, balance sheet, and cash flow management, process implementation, business performance improvements, staff leadership and development, SOX compliance, and more.

Ziad Srouji
SVP Content Strategy and
Commercial Development

Ziad was previously the Director of Acquisition and Original Production at OSN from 2016 to 2021, where he managed and strategized OSN Arabic content acquisition and curation for both linear and non-linear platforms. Over the years, he established strong relationships with production houses and leading producers in the region, which allowed him to identify content initiatives such as Awake – the first miniseries to be licenced internationally after its world premiering on OSN. During his time at OSN, Ziad successfully launched the platform’s first two award-winning Original Productions – Anonymous (Limited Series) and Curfew (Feature Film).   
 
Ziad’s career path and experience has given him comprehensive knowledge about the content journey from concept to the final product on the screen, with the ability to assess and analyse content relevance in the MENA region.    
 
Ziad holds a BA in Business Marketing and Minor in Communication Arts from the Lebanese American University, and an MBA in Media Management from Metropolitan College in New York where he was honoured with a ­Sigma Beta Delta award in 2011.

Rasha Audi
Senior Insights Manager

Rasha Audi is a highly experienced insights professional with over a decade of expertise in media and research. While she has worked across various industries such as FMCG, technology, automotive, and government sectors, her true specialization is in Media. In her role as a Media consultant, Rasha has worked with major broadcaster and publishers throughout the MENA region, establishing herself as a Media industry insights’ expert.

Specializing in market analysis, media landscape, and audience understanding, Rasha possesses a deep understanding of industry trends. As a senior insights manager, she leverages her extensive experience in diverse research methodologies and data analysis to provide actionable insights that guide the development of content while ensuring alignment with audience interests.

Mohsin Kara
SVP Head of Studio Finance

Mohsin brings almost 20 years of experience to Rise Studios, most recently from Majid Al Futtaim (MAF) in the UAE where he was Head of Financial Planning & Analysis responsible for leading the corporate strategic planning process and long-range forecasts for the various leisure, entertainment & cinemas businesses (including VOX Cinemas). Prior to this, Mohsin has worked in various commercial and finance roles across some of the world’s leading media companies both the Middle East and Europe; including OSN, BBC Studios and Reach PLC (British newspaper, magazine and digital publisher).
 
Mohsin specialises in designing, structuring and negotiating regional and global content production acquisition and distribution deals (with experience in Hollywood, Independent Studios, Arabic content, Asian, Channels deals, Telco, Distribution and Technology deals).
 
Mohsin holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance & Accounting from the University of Kent (UK) and is a certified Chartered Global Management Accountant (CIMA Qualified, UK).

Danielle Koudiesh
Executive Assistant & Project Manager

Danielle Koudsieh is the Executive Assistant to the CEO and Project Manager at Rise Studios. With a solid background of 5 years in the industry, she has established herself as a highly competent professional with expertise in project management and providing support to senior executives. Previously, Danielle held positions such as Events Executive at Capital Club Dubai and Production Executive at MBC Studios, where she showcased her proficiency in handling multiple projects and maintaining effective communication.

Danielle’s educational background includes a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree in International Hospitality Management from the Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management. During her studies, she acquired valuable skills in leadership, communication, and customer service, which she applies on a daily basis to ensure the highest level of service for her clients. Additionally, she has obtained certification as an international event and planning professional from QC Event School.

Amanda Turnbull
CEO

With more than three decades of experience in the media industry, including six years as Managing Director at Warner Bros Discovery Middle East, Africa and Turkey and a diploma from the European Television Management Academy, Amanda holds a wealth of expertise in the Middle Eastern media sector. She is deeply committed to nurturing editorial and operational talent, ensuring the region’s potential is further unlocked and connected with leading regional and global platforms to gain the recognition it rightly deserves. During her time at Warner Bros Discovery, she launched businesses in Russia, Ukraine, Serbia, Slovenia, Turkey and South Africa, and optimized the newly acquired Fatafeat TV business to profitability within three years, doubling its topline revenue.
 
Amanda is a Founding Committee Member for the TECOM (Dubai Government) Media Incubator Programme and was the first female leader in the Middle East to be recognized at the International Women in Marketing Awards in 2018. She was also honoured for Innovation in the Professional Category at the 2018 Emirates Women Awards, which she used to build a mentoring network supporting businesswomen and fem-tech start-ups across the UAE. In 2019, Amanda was honoured as Broadcast Executive of the Year by her peers at the Digital Studio Middle East Awards, truly recognizing her exceptional contribution to the MENA broadcast industry.

Ziad Srouji
SVP Content Strategy and
Commercial Development

Ziad was previously the Director of Acquisition and Original Production at OSN from 2016 to 2021, where he managed and strategized OSN Arabic content acquisition and curation for both linear and non-linear platforms. Over the years, he established strong relationships with production houses and leading producers in the region, which allowed him to identify content initiatives such as Awake – the first miniseries to be licenced internationally after its world premiering on OSN. During his time at OSN, Ziad successfully launched the platform’s first two award-winning Original Productions – Anonymous (Limited Series) and Curfew (Feature Film).   
 
Ziad’s career path and experience has given him comprehensive knowledge about the content journey from concept to the final product on the screen, with the ability to assess and analyse content relevance in the MENA region.    
 
Ziad holds a BA in Business Marketing and Minor in Communication Arts from the Lebanese American University, and an MBA in Media Management from Metropolitan College in New York where he was honoured with a ­Sigma Beta Delta award in 2011.

Mohsin Kara
SVP Head of Studio Finance

Mohsin brings almost 20 years of experience to Rise Studios, most recently from Majid Al Futtaim (MAF) in the UAE where he was Head of Financial Planning & Analysis responsible for leading the corporate strategic planning process and long-range forecasts for the various leisure, entertainment & cinemas businesses (including VOX Cinemas). Prior to this, Mohsin has worked in various commercial and finance roles across some of the world’s leading media companies both the Middle East and Europe; including OSN, BBC Studios and Reach PLC (British newspaper, magazine and digital publisher).
 
Mohsin specialises in designing, structuring and negotiating regional and global content production acquisition and distribution deals (with experience in Hollywood, Independent Studios, Arabic content, Asian, Channels deals, Telco, Distribution and Technology deals).
 
Mohsin holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance & Accounting from the University of Kent (UK) and is a certified Chartered Global Management Accountant (CIMA Qualified, UK).

Said Alam
Finance Manager

An exceptionally skilled Finance Manager, qualified ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants), and awarded a BSc Hons from Oxford Brookes University. Adept at increasing work process efficiency and profitability through functional and technical analysis. Said has over 15 years of experience in successfully managing finances, ensuring profitability and business growth in different industries with top-notch listed companies, including his last role at Rentokil Boecker, where he managed and led the finance team from 2018. Areas of expertise include strategic and financial planning, financial and management reporting, P&L, balance sheet, and cash flow management, process implementation, business performance improvements, staff leadership and development, SOX compliance, and more.

Rasha Audi
Senior Insights Manager

Rasha Audi is a highly experienced insights professional with over a decade of expertise in media and research. While she has worked across various industries such as FMCG, technology, automotive, and government sectors, her true specialization is in Media. In her role as a Media consultant, Rasha has worked with major broadcaster and publishers throughout the MENA region, establishing herself as a Media industry insights’ expert.

Specializing in market analysis, media landscape, and audience understanding, Rasha possesses a deep understanding of industry trends. As a senior insights manager, she leverages her extensive experience in diverse research methodologies and data analysis to provide actionable insights that guide the development of content while ensuring alignment with audience interests.

Danielle Koudiesh
Executive Assistant & Project Manager

Danielle Koudsieh is the Executive Assistant to the CEO and Project Manager at Rise Studios. With a solid background of 5 years in the industry, she has established herself as a highly competent professional with expertise in project management and providing support to senior executives. Previously, Danielle held positions such as Events Executive at Capital Club Dubai and Production Executive at MBC Studios, where she showcased her proficiency in handling multiple projects and maintaining effective communication.

Danielle’s educational background includes a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree in International Hospitality Management from the Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management. During her studies, she acquired valuable skills in leadership, communication, and customer service, which she applies on a daily basis to ensure the highest level of service for her clients. Additionally, she has obtained certification as an international event and planning professional from QC Event School.

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