In Karachi on May 16, 2023, the eagerly awaited CFO Conference 2023 on the theme of Resilient CFO – Balancing the Agenda for Tomorrow was successfully organized by the Professional Accountants in Business (PAIB) Committee of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP) at a nearby hotel in Karachi.

In his speech, Mr. M. Ali Latif, President of ICAP, emphasized the critical part that chief financial officers play in assisting businesses through trying times and successfully managing their long-term strategic aims. According to him, this conference emphasizes how important it is to have certain traits in order to succeed in today’s quickly changing business environment.

These traits include visionary thinking, agility, creativity, and digital knowledge. The Professional Excellence Awards (PEA) ceremony, which recognizes outstanding ICAP members in business and industry for their outstanding contributions, exemplary performance & leadership, and remarkable value addition within their respective organizations, will be held in conjunction with this year’s CFO Conference, adding even more significance to its significance.

Leadership through Empathy and Excellence was the topic of a keynote address by Mr. Amir Paracha, Chairman and CEO of Unilever Pakistan. Regardless of generational disparities, he emphasized the importance of empathy in establishing a performance-driven culture and accomplishing team goals. He emphasized emphatically how crucial emotional banking is, emphasizing how success not only benefits the individuals directly involved but also the group as a whole.

He offered his thoughts on the shotgun and rifle techniques, which are two different strategies. Targeting a large audience is part of the shotgun strategy, whereas a more narrowly focused and targeted approach is emphasized in the rifle strategy. He went on to elaborate in great depth on the three basic tenets of psychological safety, radical transparency, and idea atrocity. These belief systems were seen as essential components for strengthening employee bonds and supporting a work climate that encourages cooperation and development.

Distinguished business executives from the industry, including Mr. Rayomond Kotwal, CFO of Habib Bank Ltd., Mr. Amin Rajput, Group Managing Director & CFO of SSGCL, Ms. Naila Kassim, Group Director HR of House of Habib, and Mr. Muhammad Rizwan Dalia, Chief People Officer of K-Electric, participated in the conference’s opening panel discussion on “Skill-sets for Tomorrow.” The panelists explored many alternative techniques for successfully portraying data while putting a heavy emphasis on how crucial operational efficiency is. They emphasized the crucial part that CAs play in bringing their expertise to the public sector and stressed the significance of ongoing skill development to keep up with changing market demands. They also emphasized the need for CFOs to embrace technology, stay current with trends, and form cooperative ties.

Experts discussed the challenges of striking a careful balance between optimization efforts and important business priorities during the 80/20 Dialogue session. The session’s panelists were Mr. Muhammad Humair, Head of Special Projects at Dawood Hercules Group, Ms. Farheen Salman, President of BSAPN Lipton Teas & Infusions, and Syed Amir Ali, President & CEO of Bankislami. They provide light on the Pareto Principle, which explains the idea that just a small number of causes can have a significant impact on outcomes, with only around 20% of the factors accounting for 80% of the consequences. The panelists emphasized the crucial relevance of establishing a balance between organizational imperatives and resources by sharing their broad knowledge and deep insights.

Mr. Yousuf Bashir Qureshi, a renowned motivational speaker delivered an awe-inspiring talk in the dynamic segment known as “Power Tonic.” He shared invaluable wisdom and perspective, empowering individuals to unlock their true potential and overcome challenges they may encounter along their journey.

Mr. Samiullah Siddiqui, Chairman of, the PAIB Committee and Council Member, of ICAP, highlighted the conference’s objectives, vision, and ICAP’s significant contributions to Pakistan’s finance sector. He emphasized its relevance to professionals in business and finance.

Mr. Ali Tabba, CEO of Lucky Cement Limited, delivered a keynote address on Harnessing Leadership in Radical Times. He emphasized that embracing challenges enables us to tap into our strengths, uncover hidden capabilities, and build resilience. He emphasized the significance of venturing beyond our comfort zones, embracing calculated risks, and drawing lessons from our experiences, as these actions unlock our genuine potential.

Mr. Usama Rashid, CEO of V2F Solutions, and Mr. Muhammad Azfar Ahsan, founder, and CEO of Nutshell Group, illuminated the art of embracing opportunities in the face of unforeseen conditions in their illuminating talk on Opportunities Beyond Uncertainty. They emphasized the urgent requirement for a thorough reform of our nation’s present political structure. In order to advance, it is crucial for every sector of society to rigorously carry out its duties and take advantage of the potential of crucial variables.

The topic of the engrossing Fireside Chat, “The Call of Duty,” was the various difficulties that companies confront as a result of fluctuating energy and oil prices, growing competition from smaller economies, the introduction of internet banking, knowing brain drain, and technological hazards. Mr. Ashfaq Yousuf Tola, Minister of State & Former President ICAP; Amjad Waheed, CEO, NBP Funds; Dr. Kaiser Bengali, Economist; and Prof. Dr. Huma Baqai, Rector, Millennium Institute of Technology & Entrepreneurship were the illustrious panelists who added their expertise to the conversation. The panelists provided insightful and unique viewpoints on how companies might overcome these obstacles and take advantage of possibilities in a constantly changing global environment.

To recognize the outstanding contributions and remarkable achievements of ICAP members, the Professional Excellence Awards (PEA) ceremony was organized. During the ceremony, ICAP members were honored in various categories for their noteworthy accomplishments in their respective organizations. Mr. Shahid Mahmood Khan, Managing Director, Pak-Arab Refinery Limited (PARCO), and Kamran Azim, CEO of Taleem Finance Company Limited were honored with the prestigious Business Leader Award. Syed Majid Ali, CFO, of Faysal Bank Ltd., and Mr. Touseef Alam Khan, CFO, of National Logistics Cell, were awarded the Finance Leader Award. Mr. Muhammad Faisal, President of Automotive & COO, Lucky Motor Corporation Ltd., and Mr. Muhammad Shahzad Yousuf, Chief Business Operations Officer, PTCL were the recipients of the Business Enabler Award. Mr. Jatin Kumar, CFO, TransKarachi, and Mr. Yasir Ahmad Hashmi, Chief Internal Auditor & Head of Audit, FINCA Microfinance Bank Ltd., were awarded the Emerging Leader Award. Lastly, Mr. Muhammad Saeed Butt, Head of Financial Control, Eskan Bank BSC(C), and Mr. Asher Noor, CIO and Group CFO, AlTouq Group were honored with the Overseas Member Award.

Mr. Arslan Khalid, Vice President, ICAP delivered the closing remarks, offering a reflective summary of the conference proceedings and emphasizing the key takeaways and insights shared during the event. He expressed heartfelt appreciation to the participants, speakers, and organizers for their invaluable contributions, which undeniably played a significant role in the success of the conference.

All in all, the CFO conference speakers debated the idea of staying resilient from different tangents in light of current economic turmoil and political uncertainty.

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