Personal Profile

Simon Khalil

Senior design strategist with over 20 years of experience in design across digital and print for two of the  UK’s leading national newspapers, The Daily and The Sunday Telegraph and the Middle East’s leading  English language daily, Arab News. Proven track record of successfully juggling internal client needs with  the pressure to deliver large volumes of content to tight deadlines at world-class standards. Significant  experience leading and developing large creative teams to win over seventy design industry awards as  well as securing personal industry recognition for a variety of projects, visual identities for major events  and special coverage for global consumer brands. Highly experienced at successfully leading and  managing teams through periods of organisational change. Implemented a global digital and print  redesign for Arab News and secured seventy-one design awards in less than 36 months. Extensive  experience in developing brands and growing audiences and customers. Also, double hats as Head of  Video for Arab News initiating editorial ideas and directing scripts, storyboards and signing off on all  video output. Lead Arab News’s commercial partnerships creative team producing branded content and  sponsored products. In-depth knowledge of Adobe InDesign, Photoshop and Illustrator. Currently based  in Dubai, UAE. 

Experience

2018 - Present

Arab News

Global Creative Director                                                                                                                             

Key responsibilities

  •  Lead and direct the design strategy and operations for the creative team globally in bureaus  across the world. In particular the main creative hubs in Jeddah, London, Dubai and Islamabad.

  • Head of video initiating editorial ideas and directing scripts, storyboards and signing of on all  video output across the brand 

  • Direct photo and video shoots 

  • Managing and developing the strategic and visual development of the brand

  • Created a global creative team across multiple bureaus. Educate and develop editorial  infrastructure across the brand. Recruited resources as required 

  • Manage the creative demands of numerous internal stakeholders which include but not limited  to the executive team, senior editors and section heads 

  • Develop marketing and commercial opportunities with external clients to enhance revenue at  Arab News.  

  • Collaborating with external suppliers and commissioning specialist design work from illustration  to animation 

  • Educate and develop design and visual skills across all departments with regular training  presentations and workshops

  • Develop comprehensive style guide and ensure proper implementation with third party vendors  and clients 

  • Set clear direction, objectives and performance targets aligned to Arab News strategy on a  regular basis 

Key achievements

  • Successfully led the implementation of a major redesign, across print and digital in April 2018

  • Developed the Arab News brand across multiple new markets and grown audiences

  • Launched Arab News Japan, a Japanese language brand, and Arab News En Français

  • Secured 58 design industry awards in less than three years. Including nine European Newspaper  

  • Awards of Excellence, a WAN-IFRA Best Use of Online Video - 1st Place, thirteen SND (Society for  News Design) Awards of Excellence, one silver medal and three SPD (Society of Publication  Designers) Merit Awards. three Gold and five Silver Indigo Design Awards. 

  • Directed multi-platform editorial projects for major events in The Middle East across the year,  for example Women Driving in Saudi Arabia and Saudi National Day 

  • Launched and lead design on Arab News Deep Dives. Immersive multimedia stories using long  form software called Shorthand 

  • Developed basic typographical and fundamental design rules across the creative team globally  to align design excellence 

2000-2018

Telegraph Media Group (TMG)

Group Art Director, TMG

Key responsibilities

  • Lead and direct the design strategy and operations for all fashion and feature’s pages and  lifestyle sections of The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Telegraph including mobile and tablet  editions and on-line; ensure efficient delivery of content to the highest design standards 

  • Manage the creative demands of numerous internal stakeholders which include but not limited  to the executive team, senior editors and section heads 

  • Collaborate with and support the marketing and commercial teams on content strategy  solutions for external client briefs that require editorial design elements; represent ideas to  client when appropriate  

  • Present and champion a continuous pipeline of innovative and practical design solutions to  internal stakeholders while managing expectations appropriately, subject to time and budget  available 

  • Direct photoshoots, commission illustrators, animators, photographers, and videographers

  • Responsible for identifying design solutions for the repackaging of content from various print  sections for the mobile and tablet editions 

  • Collaborate with the TMG Video team to ensure seamless transition of print content across on line, mobile and tablet 

  • Set clear direction, objectives and performance targets aligned to TMG strategy on a daily basis

  • Monitor online content output from the likes of WSJ, New York Times, AJ+, Playground + as well  as global consumer brands to ensure on top of current content trends  

  • Develop and inspire team to achieve their full potential by providing timely, well balanced,  constructive feedback; seek out 360 feedback to enhance own and team performance

 

Key achievements

  • Successfully led the implementation of a major redesign, ensuring all design output adhered to  the new design styles and guidelines 

  • Managed team through significant period of change including a major restructure  

  • SND Award of Excellence for World’s largest Cruise Ships (Discovery front page) 

2008-2014

Art Director, 

The Daily Telegraph

2005-2008

Art Editor, Features and supplements,

The Daily Telegraph        

2005-2008

Acting Deputy Art Director,

The Daily Telegraph

2003-2005

Art Editor, News and Business sections

The Daily Telegraph

2001-2003

Art Editor, The Daily Telegraph, Weekly supplements and City Office    

2000-2001

Art Editor, DotCom Telegraph,

The Daily Telegraph

Get in Touch

Mob:

+44 (0) 7973 841130

+971 (0) 56 996 0873

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