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The EuroCham HR Committee presents the exclusive session on “Women in Leadership in Asia”.

In Asia, rapid urbanisation, growing affluence, higher female education levels and lower birthrates have helped to boost female workforce participation. However, many women are employed in the informal sector; and in the formal sector, while more women are entering the workforce comparatively few have ascended to higher professional and managerial positions.
While the road ahead isn’t clear yet, it’s heartening to see that promoting women in leadership in Asia is on employers’ agendas, with its implicit acknowledgement that creating a more diverse and inclusive workforce is good for employees, it’s good for companies, and it’s also good for society as a whole.
This event is a unique opportunity for HR professionals to hear from Ellen Ruan, Regional Vice President, HR Asia/Pacific and MEA, what Danone is doing in Asia to promote Inclusive Diversity, from Uma Thana Balasingam, founder of Lean In Women in Tech who believes that together women can do more, go further, and change the world and from Patrick Rona co-founder of HeForShe Asia.

This exciting panel discussion will be moderated by Annabelle Thebaud, HR Director at SCOR Asia Pacific.

Featuring speakers:

Uma Thana – Cofounder of Lean In Singapore

Uma is Vice President of Channels & Sales, Asia Pacific & Japan (APJ) for Riverbed. She is responsible for defining the region’s go-to-market strategies including channel, service providers and alliances. As a key member of the leadership team, she plays an active role in shaping the company’s growth strategy in the region.
Uma is also the co-founder of Lean In Singapore and the founder of Lean In Women in Technology Asia & Women In Technology Singapore which has >700 members today. LeanIn.Org was founded by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg to empower women to achieve their ambitions. Lean In Singapore, founded in 2016, is a community of over 2000 women that comes together to be inspired, empowered and educated with a focus on driving gender diversity in the workplace.

Ellen Ruan – Regional Vice President, HR Asia/Pacific/Middle East at Danone

Ellen has been the HR Leader with 24 years of professional and diverse experience, having worked with FMCG, Food, Pharmaceutical and Chemical Companies. Her outlook is global with international and regional experiences, including: Paris, Shanghai, Singapore and Asia Pacific. She has taken leadership initiatives in driving the Culture and People transformations by streamlining the new structure, new ways of working, helping the business to turn around and accelerate the business results. Her passion is on Integrated Talent Management, she is the accrediated internal coach, focusing on developing the Asian Talents, especialy the Women Talents for Danone Asia.

Annabelle Thebaud – Head of HR APAC at SCOR Reinsurance

Over the past 20 years in leadership roles spanning across Finance/New Technology industries between Europe and APAC, Annabelle has cultivated curiosity in other cultures and would define herself as a Business Strategy and Brand awareness Enabler to Attract Talent and Unleash their Potential. She has been an advocate to promote Diversity in her current role as APAC HR Director at SCOR who launched in 2016 a global women network and signed a global charter of equal opportunities between men and women in the working space.

Annabelle is also a certified career transformation and executive coach.

Bjorn Engelhardt – Senior Vice President, Asia Pacific and Japan, Riverbed Technology & co-founder of HeForShe Singapore


Bjorn Engelhardt is the Senior Vice President of Riverbed Asia Pacific & Japan (APJ). In this role, Engelhardt is responsible for leading the Riverbed team across its six APJ markets and driving Riverbed’s sales and distribution strategy.
Engelhardt has 20 years of business, IT and consultancy experience in the Asia Pacific and Japan region, including security, data center and virtualization, network and application infrastructure, software-as-a-service (SaaS) and emerging technologies. He joined Riverbed from Actifio, where he served as Vice President & General Manager Asia Pacific & Japan. Previously Engelhardt held senior leadership roles with Symantec, where most recently he led the Strategic Sales and Services Groups and previously was responsible for Symantec’s SaaS and emerging technologies groups. He has also held management, sales and distribution roles in KVS Software and Citrix Systems Inc., working with key customers and partners across the region.
Engelhardt has a Masters of Management and Post Graduate Diploma of Administration from MacQuarie Graduate School of Management. He is based in Riverbed’s APJ headquarters in Singapore.



This session is available only to EuroCham members. Please RSVP directly by calendar invite or by email to the Corporate Affairs Manager Mr. Elgin Seah at elgin.seah@eurocham.org.sg.