• Issmat Al-Akhali

Issmat Al-Akhali
President and CEO

Issmat Al-Akhali heads Blacksheep Projects as chief dealmaker and principal consultant. He works with a global network of highly qualified consultants, advisors and service providers to deliver sophisticated research and business strategies to Blacksheep's clients.

Prior to launching Blacksheep, Issmat worked on global education, marketing, economic and social development initiatives in North America, South America, the Caribbean, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. He is the former Acting CEO and head of international business development of Nova Scotia’s education and training sector association, EduNova. He is also a former founder and co-founder of several other businesses and a multinational NGO that delivered UN-sponsored human rights programs in the Middle East. He has advised entrepreneurs and activists in Canada and the Middle East, assisted in developing a counter-terrorism report for UK think tank Chatham House, and is an Associate Producer of Perfume War, an award winning documentary about an unlikely weapon in the fight for world peace.

Issmat is a graduate of the Sobey School of Business at Saint Mary’s University, and a designated Project Management Professional (PMP®). He contributes to several boards and public initiatives in Nova Scotia, and his expertise is often called upon for various export development panels. As a Historica Canada volunteer, Issmat is frequently invited by schools in Nova Scotia to speak to children about diversity, immigration, human rights and multiculturalism.

Advisory Board Members

  • Barb StegemannAuthor and CEO, The 7 Virtues Beauty Inc.Nova Scotia, Canada

    Barb Stegemann
    Author and CEO, The 7 Virtues Beauty Inc.
    Nova Scotia, Canada

    Stegemann became known to millions when she landed a venture-capital deal on the CBC TV show Dragons’ Den for The 7 Virtues Beauty. She became the “Top Game Changer” in the show’s history. Since then, Stegemann was named one of the “Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada” and was ranked as one of Profit Guide magazine’s “Top 30 Cool and Fabulous Canadian Entrepreneurs” (2012). Her fragrance collection won Chatelaine’s “Beauty 100 Award” (2012) and she received the “Women Innovators Award” from the US State Department at the APEC Women and Economy Summit.

  • Khalid AlKhudairExecutive VP, Bank of RiyadhSaudi Arabia

    Khalid AlKhudair
    Executive VP, Bank of Riyadh
    Saudi Arabia

    Alkhudair is a former resident of Nova Scotia and a Canadian citizen. He is ranked as one of the top 500 most powerful Arabs by Arabian Business Magazine. Alkhudair is KPMG's former COO of Markets for Saudi, Kuwait and Jordan. He founded Glowork.net, a Saudi-based employment agency focused on women, and led it to several global innovation awards from the United Nations, International Labour Organization and the World Bank. Alkhudair also starred as a judge on an Apprentice-inspired reality TV show in Saudi.

  • William H. ScottPresident, Branded Products Ltd.Nova Scotia, Canada

    William H. Scott
    President, Branded Products Ltd.
    Nova Scotia, Canada

    Bill Scott brings deep expertise in manufacturing and consumer packaged-goods. He is the former National Director of the Canadian Food Brokers Association and the Kidney Foundation of Canada. He has also served as a member of the board of directors of the Greater Halifax Partnership, where he provided valuable contributions to the growth and leadership of this prominent economic development organization.

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Associated Consultants

  • Amber Mackereth, PMP®, CITP®International Trade ConsultantNova Scotia, Canada

    Amber Mackereth, PMP®, CITP®
    International Trade Consultant
    Nova Scotia, Canada

    Amber is a former Trade Commissioner and previous head of the Office of Liaison with International Financial Institutions (OLIFI) at Canada's Embassy in Washington, DC. She has worked in more than 20 countries and is fluent in English, French and Spanish.
    Amber holds a Masters Degree in International Affairs and is a certified Project Management Professional and a recipient of the Certified International Trade Professional designation.

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