Nissan recently announced the appointment of Nissan Middle East Managing Director Thierry Sabbagh as President of Nissan Saudi Arabia. His appointment takes effect from 1 April. 

In his new scope, Sabbagh will work alongside the current Managing Director of Nissan Saudi Arabia, Bader El Houssami to lead the business strategy and performance for the Nissan brand in the Saudi market, while he continues to head ten other Middle East markets as Managing Director.

Industry veteran

An industry veteran with a deep and diverse understanding of corporate and automotive sectors, Sabbagh brings over two decades of comprehensive experience in sales, marketing, brand, planning and business development operations across MENA.

He joined Nissan in 2018 as Director of Sales, driving the sales performance for the brand across the Gulf, Levant, and North Africa markets. He has been leading the Middle East market as Managing Director since 2019, driving operational excellence and realising the Nissan NEXT business transformation goals in the region to foster sustainable growth, building on the brand’s heritage of 70 years in the Gulf and the wider Middle East.

Speaking on his appointment, Sabbagh said he is pleased to take on the role of president for Saudi Arabia and looks forward to working with the Nissan leadership in the market to continue growing the brand’s presence in the Middle East.

We remain committed to Nissan’s corporate purpose of enriching people’s lives with our products and technologies, towards realising our ambition of being recognised as the most trusted brand in the region among our customers, partners and employees.

Sabbagh holds a bachelor’s degree in Business/Hotel Management in Marketing from the University of West London and an executive certification in Leadership with Finance from Harvard Business School. He was recently recognised by Forbes Middle East in the Global Meets Local 2021 ranking of the top 50 business leaders in the Middle East. He will continue to report to Joni Paiva, Divisional VP of Africa, Middle East, India and Oceania.

According to Paiva, the Middle East continues to be a region of opportunity for Nissan. He said that they have been growth partners in the market for almost 70 years now, which gives them a deeper understanding and appreciation of customer needs, as well as a strong bond within the region itself. They are confident Sabbagh will continue to build on their success and foster strong collaborations to ensure both operational excellence and customer satisfaction across Nissan’s markets in the region.


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