David began his career as a software engineer at large blue-chip firms such as Hewlett-Packard and Vodafone before moving to a mobile technology start-up, leading a team of engineers building software for mobile phone companies across EMEA and Asia. In 2008 David returned to the UK to establish QuickThink Media and Bejig Ltd. Both businesses were subsequently combined and floated on the London AIM Market as Gaming Realms plc (GMR:LSE) where he served as Chief Technology Officer. As group CTO at Gaming Realms David was responsible for building and managing a 70-person strong technology team spread across the US and Europe building a state-of-the-art technology platform for the highly competitive online gaming industry.
Simon co-founded QuickThink Media with David Hampstead. Post QuickThink’s exit to Gaming Realms PLC, Simon became the group’s Chief Marketing Officer planning and executing large consumer acquisition campaigns. Simon holds an MA (hons) in economic and social history
Philip joins the Company having been the Global CEO of the Consulting Division of Kantar, the world's leading data, insights and consulting group. With 30 years of corporate experience, he brings deep retail and consumer industry expertise to Samarkand. In addition, his proven track record in scaling b2b technology and services businesses, experience in acquisitions, investment and partnership development will be invaluable.
Accustomed to operating globally, he has led Kantar group businesses in international markets having spent eight years in the Asia region, including four in China. Philip will focus on the development of Samarkand's strategic partnerships to accelerate the distribution of Samarkand's technology and services in global markets.
Tanith is an International Business Leader working as a member of senior executive teams and providing a commercial approach to the business and people agenda and has over 35 years of experience working as a HR Director across a broad sector of International businesses. Her previous positions included Group HR Director Bicester Village Collection, member of the Management Committee and Group HRD at Marks and Spencer Group PLC and at WH Smiths PLC. Tanith has held senior HR roles at Intercontinental Hotels, Diageo, Prudential PLC and Allied Domecq.
Her current Board experience includes Non-Executive Director and Chair of Remuneration Committee, Chair of Organisational Health Committee and member of Audit Committee and Nominations Committee at Robert Walters PLC. In addition, she is a member of the Advisory Council for Price Waterhouse Coopers, responsible for advising internal business leaders on a range of subjects and Trustee for Ambitious About Autism. She has also been a director of Regents Inns PLC and Busy Bees PLC and is a former Trustee of Kids Out and former board member of CIPD.
Keith has 20 years of eCommerce experience with two of the largest consumer goods companies in the world. From 2000 to 2010, Keith held senior positions at Proctor & Gamble (“P&G”) as Innovation Centre & eCommerce Director (2000-2006) and then as eCommerce and Pharmacy Channel Director (2006-2010). In 2010, Keith moved to Unilever to become Vice President eCommerce and Channel Development, becoming Senior Vice President of eCommerce in 2012 and Executive Vice President eCommerce in 2013. In 2020, after 10 years heading up Unilever’s global eCommerce strategy he was promoted to a C-level role as Chief Customer Development Officer.
Keith’s experience across two decades at P&G and Unilever brings a unique level of insight, understanding and network in the global eCommerce industry to the board.
Jeanette has considerable experience in international finance having joined Smollan as Global CFO in March 2015. Jeanette has played a key role in in the geographic expansion of Smollan, managing the successful integration of acquired businesses, as Smollan’s footprint grew from 22 to 59 countries across the world. Smollan employs over 79,000 people and represents 70% of the top 10 global consumer goods companies.
She is a qualified Chartered Accountant – CA(SA) and a member of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA).