Group Leadership Team
President and Chief Executive Officer
Hardy is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Cassava Technologies. Hardy was Group Chief Executive & Managing Director of Econet for six years, one of the pioneers of the mobile telecoms industry in Africa.
He has over 20 years’ experience of senior management experience including 5 years at Econet Wireless. He spent over 12 years as a managing director and co-founder of a regulated financial services firm in Kenya offering investment management and investment banking services across Eastern and Southern Africa. In this role, he helped companies in the region to raise more than $500m in debt and equity capital.
Hardy spent nine years as a senior executive at TDB Group (previously PTA Bank), of which five years were as an Executive Director and member of the Executive Committee. His responsibilities included overseeing the bank’s project finance portfolio across 18 countries in Eastern and Southern Africa, managing relationships with clients and governments, and raising capital for the bank’s lending programs from local and global sources.
He is a seasoned board-level practitioner with extensive senior management experience across Eastern and Southern Africa in financial services, development banking, telecommunications, media, and infrastructure.
Hardy holds engineering and business degrees from Queen Mary College (University of London) and the Edinburgh Business School.
Group Deputy Executive Chairman
Nic is the Group Deputy Executive Chairman of Liquid Intelligent Technologies. After 18 years as the Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO), he took on this new role, reporting directly to the Group Executive Chairman, Strive Masiyiwa.
As the Deputy Executive Chairman, he will focus on growth and strategy, encompassing corporate development, mergers and acquisitions. Additionally, in this role, he will build, foster and maintain relationships with key strategic stakeholders, including shareholders, investors, customers, governmental/regulatory bodies, and suppliers.
Nic is an advocate of recognising access to telecoms as a human right and promoting open access to the internet across Africa. As the GCEO of Liquid Intelligent Technologies, Liquid became Africa's largest and fastest-growing technology company and played a lead role in laying the organisation's pan-African fibre network, which stretches over 100,000 km. Under his leadership, Liquid was awarded Best African Wholesale Carrier for 10 years consecutively between 2012 till 2021.
He is a well-recognised entrepreneur and legal expert within the industry and was instrumental in the internationally recognised landmark constitutional cases resulting in the ending of the monopoly over fixed and mobile line telecommunication services in Zimbabwe. And he was only one of four Africans in the Telecom Business Magazine's list of 100 most influential people in the telecommunications industry.
Nic holds a law degree (LLB) from the University of Cape Town and a Master of Laws in Information Technology and Telecommunications Law from the University of Strathclyde.
Eric R. Thompson
Chief Financial Officer
Eric Thompson has been appointed the Chief Financial Officer at Liquid Intelligent Technologies, effective January 2023. Before joining Liquid, he led Finance for The Coca-Cola Company in many global emerging markets.
Most recently, in his role as Director of Financial Operations Coca-Cola Asia, Eric and his team executed non-commercial core financial processes throughout the region. These included statutory financial and tax filings for 140 legal entities, certain treasury operations, and global accounting processes.
Between 2005 and 2017, Eric served as CFO for Coca-Cola throughout Sub-Saharan Africa, including South Africa, Coke’s 6th most profitable market globally. Under his tenure, the company’s revenue growth accelerated substantially, driving unprecedented free cash flow growth. In addition, Eric strategised with bottling partners, including Heineken, implementing a framework to accelerate financial returns by building brands, expanding the product portfolio and making necessary manufacturing and marketplace investments for growth. This was done while effectively overseeing the internal control environment across 40 countries.
Early in his career, Eric served as CFO for Coca-Cola’s bottling operations in the Czech Republic and headed Business Planning for CCB, Coke’s first publicly-traded entity on the London Stock Exchange (FTSE); he was part of the IPO team. He began his career with Price Waterhouse and Mellon Bank in Pittsburgh.
Eric holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Towson University and a Master of Science degree from Carnegie Mellon’s Heinz School of Public Policy. Additionally, he has completed Wharton’s Executive Development Program and Harvard Business School’s – Accelerating Board Diversity Program.
Group Chief Marketing Officer
Ifeoma is Chief Marketing Officer of Liquid Intelligent Technologies. She was previously Director of Marketing and Communications for Sub-Saharan Africa at Mastercard, where she was responsible for the development of an integrated marketing and communications strategy that drove Mastercard’s business performance, brand salience, and reputation in the region. Before MasterCard, she worked at Heineken for 17 years in senior marketing roles across multiple markets and regions in Europe and Africa. Ifeoma has a law degree (LLB) from the University of Bristol and a master’s degree in international business (LLM) from Kings College London.
Group Chief Human Resource Officer
Liquid Intelligent Technologies has appointed Nthabiseng Mashilwane as Chief Human Resource Officer.
Nthabiseng brings over 27 years' experience with plus 23 years in junior management to senior management roles across diverse industries. She has over 15 years Telecommunications experience in multinational organizations.
Before joining Liquid Intelligent Technologies South Africa, Nthabiseng was the HR Director for Nokia (2008 – 2021); responsible for different countries across the African continent and prior to leaving Nokia, she was responsible for Sub-Sahara and part of North Africa as part of Middle East Africa Region.
Nthabiseng is a facilitator and an accredited coach. She is passionate about travelling and exposing herself to different cultures. She lives in South Africa with her son, Benjamin.
Lauren is our Head of Legal for both UK and Group, providing expert legal advice and support to all areas of the organisation. She joined Liquid Intelligent Technologies in July 2018 as Group Counsel and has since managed a variety of cross border legal matters, including M&As, joint ventures and corporate finance.
Lauren joined Liquid Intelligent Technologies from Lonrho Plc; an investment management company that invests in diverse industries throughout Africa, where she spent six years, initially as Group Counsel and later promoted to General Counsel. She qualified as an attorney at Schindlers Attorneys in South Africa. Lauren began her career as a Paralegal for Linklaters in the UK.
Lauren is a qualified lawyer in England & Wales and South Africa. She holds a BA in Industrial Psychology and Legal Theory as well as a Bachelors of Law from Rhodes University. Originally from South Africa, Lauren now resides in London.
Raoul du Plessis
Group Chief Information Officer
As the Group CIO, Raoul is responsible for Liquid Intelligent Technologies’s critical IT functions, including systems, infrastructure and new implementations, supporting the group as it expands its product offerings and enters new geographies.
Raoul's career in IT spans over 25 years and he brings diverse experience from his time in academia, at an independent software vendor, as well as working in the banking and telecommunications industries.
His previous roles include university lecturer in information systems, software development manager, IT development manager, head of information security and head of architecture.
Deputy Group Chief Financial Officer
Lorraine is our Deputy Group Chief Financial Officer, having joined Liquid in 2018 as the Group Financial Controller. During her career, Lorraine has worked in the finance teams of a number of global listed corporates across telecoms, retail and FMCG industries including Kingfisher, Reckitt Benkiser and Nortel Networks. Immediately prior to Liquid, Lorraine spent 8 years at TalkTalk plc, a UK listed ISP in a variety of senior finance roles, responsible for capital raising, refinancing, audit, group financial reporting, as well as the tax and treasury functions. Lorraine has a Dual Honours degree (LLB Law and Languages) from Keele University and is a qualified Chartered Accountant in the UK, having trained and qualified with KPMG.
CEO of Africa Data Centres
Tesh Durvasula is an experienced technology and real estate industry executive with a 25-year track record of successful leadership and value generation in the digital infrastructure sector. He has broad experience through all elements of business, including finance, real estate, development, operations, technology, marketing, and sales.
Durvasula served in a variety of executive roles at CyrusOne initially as the company’s chief commercial officer, responsible for sales, marketing, and strategy. He drove value for the company and its investors through a combination of rapid sales growth and mergers and acquisitions. Durvasula led the acquisitions of data centre providers Sentinel and Cervalis, as well as the data centre assets of the financial trading campus of CME Group - the three transactions had a combined value of over $1 billion. His strong record of value creation and scaling the organisation, helped Cyrus go from an initial investment of $525 million to its eventual outcome, acquisition by KKR for $15 billion.
He was then appointed president of Europe for the company, where he oversaw the company’s expansion into England, Ireland, France and Germany, which saw the organisation grow into one of the largest publicly traded REIT’s in the US. Finally, Durvasula was appointed CyrusOne’s chief executive officer, and during his tenure at the company, annual revenue grew from $221 million in 2012 to over $1 billion in 2020.
Throughout his career he has specialised in implementing growth strategies for internet infrastructure businesses. Prior to joining CyrusOne, he was chief marketing and business officer for Quality Technology Services, which IPO’d as a REIT, QTS Data Centers. At QTS Durvasula created and executed the company’s go-to-market strategy, paving the way for evolution from privately held company to equity-backed organisation to IPO, and then eventually acquired by Blackstone for $10 billion in 2021.
He was previously chief marketing and business officer for Telx, a colocation and interconnection provider. He joined the company by way of acquisition, when Telx and the REIT Digital Realty Trust acquired the interconnection businesses and data centre business, respectively, of NYC-Connect, a New York City based data centre and interconnection provider founded by Durvasula. Before founding NYC-Connect, he held management positions at Abovenet, Sprint, and Metromedia Fiber Networks.
Durvasula is a graduate of Syracuse University, with EMBA work at Columbia University and Stanford University. He lives with his wife and three sons in Greenwich, Connecticut, where he has been a youth football coach for over ten years and has been involved in charities dedicated to homelessness, and youth athletics.
CEO Liquid Cloud and Cyber Security
David was Founder and Chief Executive Officer for ZOL (Zimbabwe Online). David Behr joined Econet Wireless in 2012. David served as Executive Director and Group Director Special Operations for Econet Wireless.
David Behr is currently Chief Executive Officer, Liquid Cloud and Cyber Security at Liquid Intelligent Technologies. He has a Master of Engineering , Electrical and Electronic Engineering & Computer Science, 1st from University of Bristol in 1999 and a Master of Business Administration from ZOL (Zimbabwe Online) in 2004.
CEO Liquid Dataport
David comes with 20 years of experience in the fixed and mobile telecommunications industry across Europe, North Africa, the Middle East and sub-Saharan Africa.
David was also the Chief Strategy Officer for Liquid Intelligent Technologies from 2013, where he played a central role in the transformation of Liquid Telecom into the most successful African wholesale operator. We are excited to have David at the helm and are confident he will take Liquid Dataport to become one of the leading global wholesale operators.
CEO - South Africa & CEO Liquid Networks: South Africa
Deon Geyser was appointed the Chief Executive Officer of Liquid Intelligent Technologies South Africa in 2021 and in 2022 he was appointed the Chief Executive Officer of Liquid Networks South Africa. He brings over 15 years’ experience in the ICT and Telco space, having worked in different countries across the African continent. He is responsible for the leadership, strategy, and operations in the country.
Before joining Liquid, Geyser was the MD for Nokia Southern Africa (2015 – 2020); he was responsible for the complete P+L for Nokia in the 13 countries in his region of responsibility. During his tenure, he was involved in several 4G and 5G launches, Network Virtualisation and Software transformation programmes, Fibre to the Home deals, IP and Optical network deals, and large-scale Managed Services contracts.
Under his dynamic leadership, Nokia Southern Africa was recognised as one of the top-performing regions in the MEA market consecutively for six years. His guidance also ensured his team was afforded the CEO award for the Best Business Partner by the Vodacom CEO twice.
Over the years, he has helped organisations succeed by developing and executing targeted strategies that ensure improved stakeholder returns. His passion for building an organisation with a clear vision and goals is repeatedly showcased in the success of all organisations that he led, be it Nokia or Tigo Tanzania, between 2012 – 2014.
Geyser holds three degrees, a bachelor’s degree in Electronic Engineering, a bachelor’s degree in IT, and a master’s degree in Engineering Management from the University of Johannesburg. He was also a part-time lecturer on the subject ‘Information Systems’ at the University of Johannesburg between 2001 – 2002.
Adil El Youssefi
CEO - Kenya & CEO Liquid Networks: Rest of Africa
Effective 8 September 2022, Adil El Youssefi was appointed Chief Executive Officer, Liquid Networks: Rest of Africa based in Kenya. Adil joined Liquid Intelligent Technologies in April 2017 as CEO for Kenya. In October 2018, he became the Regional CEO of East Africa.
He was directly responsible for the leadership, strategic and operational management of Liquid Intelligent Technologies’ wholesale, enterprise and retail businesses throughout Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, South Sudan and Ethiopia.
Prior to joining Liquid Intelligent Technologies, Adil served as Managing Director of Airtel Kenya for three years. He has over 20 years of experience in senior management across Africa, Asia and Europe, with expertise in developing markets, leadership, strategy, telecommunications, sales & marketing, and digital TV.
Before joining Airtel, Adil had risen through the management ranks of global telecoms and media company Millicom. Initially as a Senior Advisor to the Chief Officer Asia in Sri Lanka, before moving to Chad to take up the Chief Executive position and then becoming Chief Executive of Millicom Ghana. Adil completed his MBA from INSEAD and has a Masters in Electronics/Telecommunications from ENSEIRB-MATMECA.
Extended Leadership Team
Group Chief Technical Officer
Shahzad has served as our Group Technical Officer since November 2019. He is an experienced technologist with a track record of designing, managing and implementing innovative technical solutions.
Joining Liquid Intelligent Technologies as a Senior Engineer in February 2006, Shahzad was promoted to Group Chief Network Architect in 2009, when he was made responsible for the design and implementation of our transmission, wireless and IP networks. In July 2018, he became interim CTO at Liquid South Africa, where he oversaw a project to upgrade the local network and improve service assurance.
In his latest role as Group CTO, Shahzad is developing and implementing a new operating model to help make Liquid Telecom the number one choice for enterprise customers across Africa.
Born and raised in Pakistan, Shahzad moved to the UK in 2001 and has a master’s degree in computer sciences. Prior to joining Liquid Intelligent Technologies, Shahzad worked for Cisco, Telephony.com and BT as a VOIP engineer. Shahzad is a motor sports enthusiast and in his spare time enjoys riding fast motor bikes.
CEO - One Africa Network
Sam is a former Cabinet Minister for the Republic of Rwanda and was in charge of energy and ICT, playing a pivotal role in formulating ICT, regulatory and energy national policies. He was involved in several African and global infrastructure initiatives, including dealing with stakeholders, development partners and related funding entities.
He holds a Masters Degree in Engineering from Canada and is a Professional Engineer with over 30 years of progressive executive management in the utilities and the telecoms industry in Africa and North America. He is the Chairman for Liquid Intelligent Technologies Group in East Africa, and previously served on Rwandatel, MTN and Altech East Africa and local power utilities’ boards.
Sam has been the Group Chief Managing Executive for Business Development and Government Relations and currently serves as Chief Executive Officer for One Africa Broadband Connectivity (1-ABC). Part of the Liquid Intelligent Technologies Group, 1-ABC focuses on new business markets delivering national and cross border fibre networks linking the Africa continent.
CEO - Zimbabwe & Deputy CEO Liquid Networks
Wellington joined Liquid Intelligent Technologies in February 2009. He oversees and sits on several boards of the Group Companies in Southern Africa. He is directly responsible for the leadership, strategic and operations management of Liquid Intelligent Technologies Zimbabwe.
He has served on several Boards and currently sits on the board of directors of CEC Liquid Zambia, Liquid Botswana and ZOL Zimbabwe. He has been heavily involved in the planning, set up and build of the Liquid Intelligent Technologies network and business in Zimbabwe.
Wellington, who holds a B.Sc. degree and an MBA, has worked in telecommunications, consumer electronics and industrial electronics industries in both the UK and Africa since early 1980s. He has worked in these respective industries at both technical and senior executive levels. He has also worked in senior executive positions in both public and private sectors.
He is a keen golfer and loves watching football – he’s an ardent Manchester United supporter and loves to travel all over the world.