The Business Year

Hisham Itani

LEBANON - Telecoms & IT

Unmatched Expertise

Chairman & CEO, Resource Group (RGH)


Hisham Itani has a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration from the American University of Beirut. He started his professional career in his family’s printing business. Thereafter, Itani took the security printing business to another level and expanded into different technology verticals. He invested in R&D and produced leading-edge solutions that could compete on the international scene. His focus on technology has had a constructive and tangible impact on government automation in Lebanon. He is now Chairman and CEO of RGH, which consolidates a portfolio of companies across 10 sectors in over 50 countries.

Resource Group goes the extra mile to develop innovative solutions aimed at improving people's lives and helping Lebanon transition toward a knowledge-based economy.

You were the only company in the technology sector to be recognized at “Forbes Lebanon 100″ for your contribution to Lebanon’s economic growth. What does this recognition mean to you?

This recognition represents the acknowledgment of our team’s efforts to harness new technologies for the development of digital services. At the same time, it shows that the technology sector is gaining momentum in the national economic scene. We have the ability to develop our own technologies, instead of limiting ourselves to importing and adapting systems. This only became possible with the advancement in the capabilities of our national talents. We are also glad to see support from the government for the technology sector, by creating a Ministry for IT, deploying digital public services, nurturing startups ecosystems, and positioning the country as a player in the global technology market. At RGH, our priority is to continuously invest in Lebanese talents, whose work on our proprietary solutions has already contributed to the citizen experience in Lebanon. We are determined to pursue our investments in R&D to create solutions based on the latest technologies, and contribute to the country’s digital transformation alongside other Lebanese tech companies.

You recently wrote that the knowledge economy can be a driver of Lebanon’s growth. How can this be achieved?

Most developed countries testify that knowledge is the key driver of economic growth, wealth creation, employment, and social welfare. The knowledge economy is rooted in quality education and access to information. It encourages freedom of expression, interactions with global cultures, pluralism, and R&D and innovation. Such characteristics help improve the positioning of a country as a technology influencer on the global market. Our country has laid the foundations of the knowledge economy. We see initiatives such as Banque du Liban’s Circular 331, Beirut Digital District, and UK Tech Hub, as well as the government´s recognition of the knowledge economy as one of the sectors that present the highest growth potential. All of these initiatives prove that Lebanon is on a steady path toward embracing the knowledge economy as a driver of national development. In this regard, the Lebanese quality educational system is an essential component. The evolution process to achieve such a goal is complex; however, with the right support from authorities and efforts from industry stakeholders, Lebanon can join other exemplary countries.

What is the relation between the knowledge economy and ICT?

ICT is key to establishing a knowledge economy. It supports knowledge transfer, and thus, it has a direct impact on economic growth, especially in developing countries. In the context of Lebanon, we see the example of the fiber optics project, which directly supports the country’s strategy to move toward a knowledge economy. High-speed internet opens numerous new business opportunities for companies which focus their growth on the knowledge-based services and products. It facilitates the development of incubators and accelerators as focal points for the growth of new ideas and disruptive technologies.

How can RGH further support the country’s infrastructure to embrace a smarter city life?

Embracing the benefits of digital transformation in all aspects of urban life is at the core of our business mindset. RGH focuses on innovation and invests aggressively in R&D to find solutions for challenges faced by citizens. We welcome and encourage every initiative to create a smarter city life and have an active role in such initiatives. In this context, we are taking part in the development of the country’s infrastructure with the fiber-optic project. We are also contributing to the city’s digital transformation by assisting in the automation of public services. With its home-grown tech companies, start-ups, and highly educated local talents, Beirut has a great potential to emerge as a smart city. However, a significant effort is required from all involved stakeholders to deliver solutions that add value in today’s complex landscape.



You may also be interested in...

Mahmoud Sobh

LEBANON - Tourism

Open Doors


General Manager, Zaatar w Zeit

Hadi el Khoury

LEBANON - Tourism

Taste Test


General Manager, Chili’s BEIRUT

View All interviews



Become a sponsor