Executive Team

Chris Wood

Chief Executive Officer

Chris WoodAs CEO of WIOCC, Chris leads the executive team responsible for all elements of the company’s global operations including corporate and product strategy, worldwide sales, finance, IT management, resource planning and operations. Chris joined WIOCC as CEO in 2008, driving the company through its start-up phase and into full-scale operations. Chris is the Chairman of the EASSy Management Committee and his career spans over 20 years in the telecommunications industry. A qualified accountant, Chris has held leadership positions in a variety of fields in major telecommunications companies. Before joining WIOCC in 2008, Chris was VP Commercial Operations, Marketing & Product Development at FLAG Telecom (now Reliance Globalcom), a global network services provider. Chris’s interests include skiing, golf, scuba diving, travelling, rugby and hockey.

James Wekesa

Chief Commercial Officer

James WekesaJames implements sales and marketing strategies whilst managing customer relations across Africa. His career spans over 15 years in sales, marketing and business-to-business operations. He joined WIOCC in 2009 from the Afsat Communication Group where he was General Manager, Kenya and Group Head of Special Projects amongst other positions. He holds an MBA from ESAMI/ MsM, Project Management certification, C.I.M certification and undertook his undergraduate studies at JKUAT. His interests include community service, keeping fit and travelling.

Ryan Sher

Chief Operating Officer

Ryan SherAs COO, Ryan is responsible for global non-shareholder sales, developing and managing all WIOCC product offerings, network operations and procurement. Ryan joined WIOCC in 2009, having held senior-level roles over eight years with Reliance Globalcom (previously FLAG Telecom). He holds an MBA from the London Business School and a degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. Ryan’s interests include golf and hiking.

Samuel Ndungu

Chief Financial Officer

Samuel NdunguSamuel is responsible for the overall financial functions of WIOCC and also provides relevant legal and commercial support to the company. He is the Co-Chairman of the Investment & Agreements Sub-Committee and a member of the Finance & Administration Sub-Committee within EASSy Consortium. His experience spans over 15 years in auditing, banking and telecommunications. Samuel joined WIOCC from Afsat Communications Group where he worked for seven years in finance and accounting and also in general management. His last assignment was General Manager for Afsat Communications Zambia Limited. Samuel is a Certified Public Accountant and a member of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in International Business Administration from United States International University and certification in HR Management and also Management Development Program from University of South Africa. His interests include reading, travelling, hiking and community service.

Mike Last

Chief Marketing Officer & International Business Development

Mike LastMike is responsible for driving WIOCC’s Marketing and Business Development activities outside Africa. This includes planning and implementation of marketing and business development strategies, identification and development of new business opportunities, and managing relationships with the industry, the media, agencies, partners and other organisations and individuals. He has 25 years’ experience in the telecoms industry, with over 15 years developing and managing international and domestic business-to-business marketing programmes and maximising sales teams’ abilities to drive revenues and margins. After a number of years working in the submarine sector, he moved into providing marketing and sales consultancy services to international telecoms businesses including BT, C&W, Cisco, Orange Business Services, Reliance Globalcom and Turk Telekom. Mike holds a Master’s degree from Staffordshire University and he is a graduate of BT’s Marketing Excellence programme. His interests include tennis, skiing, scuba diving, photography, wildlife and nature.

Darren Bedford

Chief Development Officer 

As Chief Development officer, Darren’s responsibilities include planning and implementing business development strategies and expanding WIOCC’s network coverage across the region.

Prior to joining WIOCC, Darren was Head of Terrestrial and Subsea Expansion at PCCW and was responsible for the expansion of Gateway’s African network. Before that, Darren was Commercial Director for Aerosat, one of South Africa’s first wireless internet start-up.