Adel Hattab CEO of Helvar, the world’s leader in lighting intelligence, joins Business Matters to tell us who inspires him and what is the inspiration behind his business.
What do you currently do?
I’ve been CEO of Helvar since September last year. As the world’s leader in lighting intelligence. we offer an extensive range of lighting products, which offer stylish and adaptable lighting solutions across the healthcare, education, offices, hospitality and marine sectors including some of the most exciting global design and architectural projects.
Some recent projects have included the world’s largest passenger ship, The Symphony of the Seas, Dubai’s most talked about new landmark The Dubai Frame and the one of the largest hospitals in Finland – The New Children’s Hospital.
It is an incredibly exciting time for the brand as we move beyond the world of traditional hardware lighting into new software driven services.
What was the inspiration behind your business?
Continued innovation is what inspires us and drives us forward. We are constantly seeking to offer state-of-the-art technology in all our products and the approach we take in reaching our customers.
We maintain an ambitious start-up mentality in everything we do. We are now among the world’s oldest start-ups. Helvar has a 97-year history of evolution and today we are in a transformational moment in lighting, shifting from lighting to enlightenment that taps into health benefits and wellbeing.
Our staff and partners, with their combined 3,000 years of experience in delivering lighting solutions across the globe, take an agile approach to technology, methodology and supporting the needs of its growing international network.
What defines your way of doing business?
I have enjoyed a varied career across a number of industries ranging from telecoms, automation, metals and energy where I experienced both B2B and B2C. I have also had the pleasure to work across different disciplines ranging from marketing and sales, product management and several different leadership roles in global companies.
My passion is being close to the customer and understanding the market requirements which equips me with the best possible tools to drive the business.
I believe that being close to customers is essential in today’s changing environment where competition is steadily increasing. It is the companies who anticipate the customers needs today in an ever-changing market that are successful tomorrow.
My previous roles with global companies including Nokia, Metso, Outotec and Wärtsilä have given me expertise, knowledge and experience of major transitions in business. This is highly relevant in the ongoing digital transition.
Who do you admire and why?
I admire challengers in business, pragmatic business leaders who can navigate out of difficult business situations. The current Chairman of Nokia, Risto Siilasmaa, is such a person.
Looking back is there anything you would have done differently?
I would not change many things. I have been fortunate to work across many world class companies with great colleagues on all continents.
My business career started early in my student days when I was also sailing on a competitive level. I have tried to seize every opportunity and cannot think of any major thing I would change looking back!
What advice do you give someone starting out?
My advice would be to follow your passion and let this passion lead you to the direction which inspires you. Look at work as a learning journey that gives you positive challenges on a daily basis. Take a positive approach on your journey and be open to change!