31 October, Sofia Event Center
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The event

In an increasingly digital economy we have to make sure that the workforce has the skills to meet the demands of the future of work. New technologies, AI, automation, machine learning and virtual collaboration, are transforming business processes and entire organizations.

There are also a few other trends that are transforming work as we knew it until recently.
The border line between our work and personal lives is shifting. Expectations for diversity and equality are reshaping the workplace. Longer life expectancy requires us to master more and different skills over time. GenZ is changing the work landscape and there is significant demand for more flexible working conditions.

Where are the risks and what are the opportunities created by these changes?
How could the new reality help people and organizations be more productive and meaningful?
How to achieve balance and focus on the collaboration between technology and humans
human skills such as creativity, empathy and ethics alongside digital skills?

Join us at the 16th edition of the HR and Leadership Forum in Sofia on October 31 and explore with us possible answers and solutions.
Listen to inspirational keynote talks, take some practical advice and experience by yourself different gadgets, HR software or business management concepts.

Topics in the agenda
  • How to make people valuable in the technological era
  • The battle for the talents - how to stay ahead
  • How to make the most of technology, AI, VR at the workplace
  • How to successfully adapt to the never-ending changes
  • Which are the new crucial capabilities and competencies
  • Human skills in focus: creativity, empathy and ethics
  • The future of employee experience
  • Diversity and Inclusion - best practices
  • How to stay successful and maintain work-life balance

Keynote talks
Discussion sessions
Networking sessions
Parallel lectures

600 + attendees - CEOs and senior managers, HR professionals from different sectors of the economy, IT professionals, representatives of consulting companies, recruitment agencies, public administration, PR specialists, NGO sector.

Venue: Sofia Event Center

Super early-bird ticket until July 7th: 120 BGN VAT excl.
Early-bird ticket July 8th until September 2nd: 180 BGN VAT excl.
Regular ticket September 3rd until October 23rd: 230 BGN VAT excl. 
Lazy-bird ticket October 24th – October 30th: 300 BGN VAT excl.

Deadline for registration: October 30th

*No one under the age of 18 will be admitted to the Event. 


  • Daniel Susskind

    Daniel Susskind Fellow in Economics at Balliol College, University of Oxford

    Dr Daniel Susskind explores the impact of technology, particularly artificial intelligence, on work and society. He is a Fellow in Economics at Balliol College, Oxford University, where he teaches and researches. He is the co-author of the best-selling book, The Future of the Professions. His TED Talk, on the future of work, has been viewed more than 1.4 million times. Previously he worked in the British Government – as a policy adviser in the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit, as a policy analyst in the Policy Unit in 10 Downing Street, and as a senior policy adviser in the Cabinet Office. He was a Kennedy Scholar at Harvard University.
  • Joey Price

    Joey Price Founder of Jumpstart:HR, award-winning human resources executive, business coach, thought leader, and professor

    Joey Price is an award-winning human resources executive, business coach, thought leader, and professor. He is the founder of Jumpstart:HR, LLC, an HR consulting practice specifically for small businesses and startups, and host of Business, Life, and Coffee, a weekly personal and professional development podcast. As the CEO of Jumpstart:HR, LLC, Joey innovates by creating HR solutions for small business owners and start-up founders who want to build better, more competitive businesses. As a podcaster on the Business, Life, and Coffee show, Joey shares carefully curated conversations on personal finance, psychology, professional development, and business for emerging professionals and business owners alike. BLC is a podcast focused on enhancing the quality of your business and life through relevant content that endures over time. Joey is a recent HR Executive Magazine Top 100 HR Tech Influencer, SHRM Top 30 Under 30 award winner, one of Forbes Magazine's Kevin Kruse's Top 100 Employee Engagement Experts in the World, and frequently cited HR and Startup Thought Leader in publications such as Forbes, HR Magazine, Inc., Businessweek, AMEX Open Forum, Money Magazine, and more.
  • Teodora Petkova

    Teodora Petkova CEO and Chairman of the Management board of UniCredit Bulbank

    From May 2019 Teodora Petkova is CEO and Chairman of the Management board of UniCredit Bulbank. In September 2016 she became a member of the Management Board and Chief Risk Officer at Unicredit Bulbank in Sofia. She is the Chairing head of the Credit Council of Unicredit Bulbank, of the Provisioning and Restructuring Committee, and a member of the Credit Committee. She started her career in the Bank as a credit analyst in 2002 and became senior manager of the corporate credit team in 2007, leading the post-merger integration and implementation of the best practices in credit underwriting operations for the three local banks that were merged into UniCredit Bulbank. In the period 2009-2015, Teodora was Head of the Credit Risk Department of the Bank. Then she gained cross-divisional business experience as Head of International Center in the Corporate and Investment Banking Division, managing the relationship with the international and multinational corporates, having Bulgarian establishments. She is part of the Supervisory Board of UniCredit Consumer Financing EAD and UniCredit Leasing EAD has years of experience as part of the Board of Directors of UniCredit Factoring EAD. She is member of the Executive Board of the Association of Banks in Bulgaria (ABB) and she is in the Board of Directors of BORICA - Bank Services. Teodora Pеtkova holds a Master’s Degree in Finance from the University of National and World Economy in Bulgaria. She also has a Global Executive MBA from Carlson Business School of the University of Minnesota and from the Vienna University of Economics and Business.
  • Sudhir Saseedharan

    Sudhir Saseedharan Global Lead, LEGO Workplace Design

    Sudhir heads up a global team at The LEGO Group of passionate and creative professionals, whom he inspires and who inspire him to continually create the next awesome LEGO workplace experience.

    User centric design is the core of what he does, which helps to get the optimum work effectiveness, productivity and brand engagement to better enable The LEGO Group.
    How do we use smell, views, sound, touch, colors, daylight, etc to aid the workplace engagement? 
    What is the inherent correlation between the Company culture and the workplace?
    How does intangible organizational values manifest itself in the environment with tangible solutions? 
    How is technology shaping, changing and reshaping the way we work?

    Sudhir, a gold medalist from the School of Interior Design, CEPT University Ahmedabad and an exchange with Hochschule for Technik, Stuttgart is where his approach to creative problem solving was molded.  Armed with a Masters in International Urban Studies from Bauhaus University, Weimar and a Master of Engineering in Urban Design & Planning from Tongji University, Shanghai; Sudhir brings diverse viewpoints and scales to the table. Working in Berlin, Dubai, Mumbai, Shanghai and Denmark has developed his global mindset and cultural sensitivity.

    Currently based out of Billund, Denmark, the Headquarters of The LEGO Group, Sudhir leads the workplace experience at all LEGO workplaces globally where he and his awesome team try innovative solutions to better the employee experience.

  • Annee Bayeux

    Annee Bayeux Chief Learning Strategist, EdCast

    Annee Bayeux is the Chief Learning Strategist at EdCast where she leads the Learning eXperience Center.  The LXC is a center of excellence that focuses on people and learner engagement throughout the employee lifecycle. Annee is an international HR professional with more than 20 years experience in HR Digital Transformation, M&A and Learning and Development at three corporate universities and two centers of expertise. She has previously worked for blue-chip companies such as Bosch, Alstom, General Electric and her latest role before joining EdCast was Global Head of Danone Academy. She is a self-proclaimed geek obsessed with all things pluggable and rechargeable.   
  • Tim Kurth

    Tim Kurth Executive Director and Vice-President, AURUBIS BULGARIA

    Tim Kurth was born on July 8th, 1967 in Bremen, Germany. He is a specialist in logistics from the University of Applied Sciences in Friedberg, Germany. He started his career in Unilever (1990-2001) where as Director Export he gained experience in business planning, purchasing, accounting and customer service. His career growth continued in "Numico" and until 2004 he held the position Division Manager Logistics for the brands Milupa and Pulmoll, mainly dealing with planning and providing of raw materials for the company's activity. He lived and worked in Opole (Poland) from 2004 to 2006 where he held the position Manager Supply chain. During the same year he had started work in NA Cumerio (the former name of Aurubis) and until July 2014 he held the position Vice-President Corporate Logistics. In the period 2009-2013 he is also took the corporate function Manager Innovations in the concern, responsible for variety of activities, including important projects in Bulgaria. As of August 1st, 2014 he held the position Executive Director and Vice-President of Aurubis Bulgaria. Since 2015 he is the President of German & Bulgarian Chamber of Industry and Commerce.
  • Nikolai Nedelchev

    Nikolai Nedelchev CEO, Publicis Groupe Bulgaria

    Nikolai Nedelchev was born in Plovdiv in 1966. He has graduated his secondary education in the English Language School in his hometown. Nikolai holds a master degree in International Relations from the University of National and World Economy in Sofia. He started his professional career in 1992 as a Marketing Communications Manager in BBS the representative office of Apple Computer in Bulgaria. In 1995 he set his feet on the entrepreneurship path founding the advertising agency M.A.R.C. with the vision to provide integrated marketing communications. Currently he is the CEO of Publicis Groupe Bulgaria – the largest marketing communications company on the Bulgarian market.

    Publicis Groupe Bulgaria is the partner of the third largest marketing communications holding in the world – Publicis Groupe. It represents the following brands in Bulgaria: Saatchi & Saatchi, Leo Burnett, Publicis Dialog, ZenithMedia, Starcom, MSL, Red Lion and Digitas thus being able to provide the most comprehensive marketing offer on the market through truly holistic communications.

    Nikolai Nedelchev is a member of the executive boards of the Bulgarian Association of the Communication Agencies (BACA), Bulgarian Association of the PR agencies (BAPRA) and Junior Achievement Bulgaria. Nikolai has two kids, loves books, sports and travel.
  • Neville Pritchard

    Neville Pritchard B.Ed, CFCIPD, FCIB, FLPI, Founder & CEO, People in Flow

    Neville is CEO of People in flow; a performance consultant, coach & mentor. He began his corporate life with HR roles at Legal & General, then Abbey National (Head of Group Training & Management Development) and Barclays (Head of Learning & Barclays University; Head of High Volume Recruitment & Training). For the past 15 years he has worked in and led consulting teams in a number of industries, geographies, sectors and blue chip companies including EY, The Open University, JT Global, Boloré, Thomson Reuters, Credit Ágricole, Generali Worldwide, The Listening Company, Weight Watchers, The UK National Audit Office, ACI Worldwide, Sussex Housing and Care, Hertfordshire and Essex County Councils. He now focuses on the impact of culture, leadership and management on the working environment and performance. He has developed a range of frameworks and adopted new tools that enable new thinking and impact from people support, development and ‘In-Flow’ leadership. This includes the work of Dr Andre Vermeulen on Neuro-Agility, a foundation skill for the future. As a coach, mentor, consultant and speaker, Neville provides organisations expertise and support in all people related considerations including improvements in Organisation Health, the impact of operational and strategic HR and People Development.
  • Evelina Atanassova

    Evelina Atanassova Assistant professor of Business Administration, Human Resources and Organizational Leadership at Brandman University

    Dr. Evelina Atanassova is an Assistant professor of Business Administration, Human Resources and Organizational Leadership at Brandman University in Irvine, California. She has also had extensive teaching experience at HEC Paris (Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales) and the Mihaylo College of Business and Economics at California State University, Fullerton. Dr. Atanassova’s research interests include organization management and organization behavior theories. She is currently investigating social networking strategies as a response to professional demands and individual goals, as well as social network configurations. Her research has been presented at major academic conferences, such as The Academy of Management and the European Group for Organization Studies. Earlier in her career, Dr. Atanassova gained operational leadership experience in Human Resource Management as an HR Manager at Vivacom, a Bulgarian telecommunications company. In that capacity, she was responsible for developing and implementing large-scale strategic initiatives spanning diverse HR disciplines, including job evaluation and grading, performance appraisal, organizational restructuring, competency models and leadership development.
  • Sabrina Dick

    Sabrina Dick HR Director Central and Eastern Europe, SAP

    Sabrina Dick is the HR Director for Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and together with her team she supports 16 countries and 5,000+ employees from an HR perspective. She is responsible for defining and
    executing the HR strategy in the Market Unit and is a member of the CEE Management Team.
    Prior to taking over this role, Sabrina has held several positions at SAP both in Business as well as HR functions in the past 10+ years. She holds a degree in International Business and Intercultural Studies from Heilbronn University (Diplom-Betriebswirtin (FH)) in Germany. Identifying potential in individuals and helping them grow is one of Sabrina’s biggest passions. She strongly believes in the power of diversity and therefore loves working at an international company like SAP. Making processes more efficient to enable the business to take faster and better decisions is what drives her day in and day out. In her private life Sabrina finds her balance to work as well as regularly tests her physical limits by being an active CrossFitter. She loves to travel, has a special interest in foreign cultures, and likes being surrounded by family and friends.
  • Ernesto Marinelli

    Ernesto Marinelli SVP, Global HR Business Partner Lead for Global Customer Operations and Head of HR Business Partners for EMEA North, EMEA South, MEE, and Greater China Region, SAP

    Ernesto has over 15 years of human resources experience. He is currently the Senior Vice President for Human Resources SAP. Passionate about transformation and the impact of leadership on people, Ernesto is a seasoned, goal oriented global HR Senior Executive with broad experience in supporting the Sales and Services organization as well as Development Groups. Accustomed to work in an international environment, Ernesto is strong in transformational work and possesses in-depth expertise in all relevant HR processes with a strong ability in creating long- term partnerships. He speaks Italian and German, is fluent in English and has good knowledge of French and Spanish. He joined SAP in 2005 as a recruiter and had several roles within the HRBP Organization. Ernesto earned a Master Degree in General Linguistics and a PHD in German Linguistics at the University of Würzburg in Germany.
  • Krasse Gueorgiev

    Krasse Gueorgiev Ultrarunner, Adventurer, Coach

    Krasse Gueorguiev is the first Bulgarian who participated and successfully finished one of the World’s hardest running competitions – "The Badwater Race" in the Death Valley with a 216 km long track and asphalt heated up to 90 degrees Celsius. He has done over 60 marathons (42 km) and more than 30 ultramarathons (over 100 km) in places from the Arctic to Cambodia, from the Sahara desert (the legendary 240 km Marathon of the Sands) to the Brazilian jungle (257 km). Krasse started to run at the age of 30 when he was an overweight smoker with an extremely unhealthy lifestyle. However, he quickly discovered that running is his sport. Starting with walks in the park, he gradually got engaged in running and started to run longer and longer distances. He progressed to ultra-long disciplines, which very few people in the world succeed at. In January and September this year, Krasse achieved success at two more amazing challenges. In January he ran for 36 hours run on a treadmill in a trade center in Sofia in order to raise funds for children with oncohematological diseases’ sports camps. In September he did the same thing, but the hours were 55, the place was Plovdiv and the running was outdoors.
  • Dimitrina Sivkova

    Dimitrina Sivkova Physiotherapist

    Dimitrina is a physiotherapist and founder of "Fina Style" (2002) – a center for massage and physiotherapy. She’s a member of the Management Board of the Bulgarian Association of Physiotherapists, as well as an instructor of Rocktape (the biggest brand for kinesiological tape). Dimitrina has been working for more than 18 years in the field of massages and physiotherapy techniques related to sports and the sedentary lifestyle of office workers. She first became interested in these issues in 2006 when "Fina Style" opened a branch office in a large business building and started working with one of the telecoms in the country. Since then she has been searching for and testing the possibilities for reducing the negative effects of sedentary lifestyle through kinesiotherapy and physiotherapy practices. She works with active athletes and has participated in a number of sporting events and extreme challenges as a personal physiotherapist. She is the physiotherapist of the ultrarunner Krasse Gueorguiev, who ran 36 hours for charity in January this year and another 55 hours in September.
  • Eva Makedonska

    Eva Makedonska Ingram Micro, HR Director

    Eva has been working in the outsourcing business for more than 14 years in different HR roles in Bulgaria, Czech Republic, and Malta. She joined Ingram Micro GBS in 2012 as HR Director, located in Sofia, Bulgaria. She built an efficient talent acquisition process from scratch, to grow and sustain an organization of 1000+ associates in Bulgaria. Implementing ‘Hire Great’, has put the talent acquisition team as best-in-class within Ingram Micro. Eva made learning and development a key differentiator to attract talent and drive productivity and associate engagement. An all-encompassing ‘Leadership Academy’ is tailored to different levels in the organization and with the future in mind, will focus on upskilling social, technical, people management and leadership competencies: Franklyn Covey’s 7 habits, Ericsson coaching, data literacy, etc. Innovation, open-mindedness and leading with purpose are Eva’s main drivers, evidenced by her contributions to actively promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace and evangelizing corporate social responsibility events and incentives.
  • Katerina Shopova

    Katerina Shopova Human Resources Director at Lidl Bulgaria EOOD & Co. KD

    Her employment career begins at Coca-Cola Helenic Bottling Company where she supports the administrative team of the Human Resources department. Two years later she is part of the British American Tobacco team, where throughout the years she had occupied a number of positions which enabled her to pass through all levels of human resource management and people interactions. During her time in British American Tobacco she actively participated in the challenging process of transforming the business model and establishing a new organizational structure in Bulgaria. In addition, Mrs. Shopova has successfully led a number of projects related to corporate culture and change management, as well as emphasizing on establishing a sustainable and competitive process for hiring high-profile employees and talent management programs in the organization. She continues her career at Kamenitsa AD, where she is part of the leadership team responsible for the construction and implementation of the new cluster structure of the company, including the Bulgarian and Romanian markets. In the beginning of 2018, she became part of the Lidl Bulgaria team as a Procurator and Human Resources Director. 
  • Ulrich Heppe

    Ulrich Heppe CEO Fraport Bulgaria Varna Airport and Burgas Airport

    Ulrich Heppe has more than 18 years of experience in the airport and financial services industry.
    Since September 2015, he has held the position of CEO of Fraport Bulgaria, the operator of Fraport’s Black Sea airports in Varna (VAR) and Burgas (BOJ) in Bulgaria. Ulrich joined Fraport in 2007, where he occupied various positions including interim CFO at King Khaled International Airport (KKIA) in Riyadh in 2012 as a member of Fraport’s management contract team in Saudi Arabia. From 2013 to 2015, he was appointed CEO of Fraport AG’s Senegalese subsidiary Daport SA. Ulrich started his career as a financial analyst at Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein Investment Bank in Frankfurt in 2001, also taking on the responsibility of vice president for Avenue Capital, a London-based private equity group. Born in 1971, Ulrich Heppe graduated from the University of Bayreuth, Germany, where he studied law and business administration.
  • George Partsakoulakis

    George Partsakoulakis Director People and Culture, PMI EU Southeast Cluster

    George Partsakoulakis is Director People and Culture at PMI for the EU Southeast Cluster. He is responsible for the management of the HR teams in PMI Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, Croatia and Slovenia. Driven by his passion on people and organizational development, Partsakoulakis joined PMI in 2013. He started in the Operating center in Lausanne, where he was working on Management and Organizational Development, supporting EU markets in performance management, talent development and learning and in parallel driving important projects, including integration of acquired companies, development of organizational KPIs and designing HR tools to support commercialization of Reduced Risk Products. Partsakoulakis is a strong believer of the power of people and the impact of the organizational culture to the business results. He is inspired by PMI’s vision for development of a smoke-free future and he is working passionately on the internal transformation towards a consumer centric, data and technology driven organization. Partsakoulakis studied Mathematics and Computer Science in Athens and holds a Master degree in Business Administration.
  • Alexandrina Dimitrova

    Alexandrina Dimitrova Executive Director of The Cedar Foundation

    Alexandrina Dimitrova is Executive Director of The Cedar Foundation – a Bulgarian NGO with over 13 years of experience in deinstitutionalization and provision of quality social services to disadvantaged groups. Alexandrina leads a team of 100 employees and is responsible for the sustainable development of the organization, its advocacy activities, and diversified fundraising from corporate and individual donors. The organisation actively promotes corporate social responsibility and has managed to establish long-term partnerships with international and Bulgarian companies, resulting in 600 000 BGN investments per year in the cause. Alexandrina is a Bachelor in International Relations at Sofia University and has completed a one-year course in Political Science at the University of Missouri, USA as part of the Bulgarian Young Leaders Program. In 2015 she was selected as one of the "40 under 40" leaders in Darik Radio project, and in 2018 was featured in Forbes "30 under 30" selection.
  • Peter Ivanov

    Peter Ivanov Manager, Entrepreneur and Virtual teams Expert

    Peter Ivanov is Manager, Entrepreneur and Virtual teams Expert with over 20 years of international experience. His book "Virtual Power Teams" is translated in 6 languages and is Amazon Top 3 in the category - international management. Born in Bulgaria he graduated Mathematics and joined a multinational company as Data Analyst. He quickly became IT Manager for Bulgaria and gradually worked his way up to IT Services Manager for Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa. Peter recognized the growing importance of the teams in multiple locations and developed an innovative method for leading Virtual teams. In 2007 the Team led by Peter won the "Best of the Best" award for outstanding Project management in establishing global Shared services. In 2012 his Team won the "Global IT Connect Award" for excellent Engagement in a global cross-functional environment. In 2013 Peter founded "Virtual Power Teams" and started new career as Keynote speaker and Executive coach on New Leadership. Peter is a passionate athlete and World Senior Champion in Discus. He actively supports young Talents in the fields of mathematics and sports. In his dynamic keynote speeches and master classes, held in English, German, Bulgarian and Russian, Peter uses the experience he has gained as Manager, Athlete, Entrepreneur and, yes, the father of five little girls, to show you how to build up and lead your own successful Virtual Teams. As an expert in New Leadership Peter supports managers to retain the gravity of their Team despite the geographical distance, age and cultural differences, and deliver Top business performance!
  • Alexander Dimitrov

    Alexander Dimitrov Chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO, A1

    Alexander Dimitrov has more than 18 years of experience in the telecommunications sector. He took on his current role on October 1, 2015. Prior yo joining the A1 team he has been Chief Commercial Officer at Vivacom since 2008. Earlier, he was Commercial Director (2001 – 2006) and CEO (2006-2008) of Germanos Telecom Bulgaria. Under his leadership in 2018 the telecom successfully executes one of the broadest rebranding campaigns in Bulgaria adopting the A1 brand. The transformation of the company is connected not only to the visual change but also to the introducion of new products and services, a new approach to client relations and new employee policy. Since Macrh 2017 Alexander Dimitrov is a Member of the Managing Board of the Confederation of Employers and Industrialists in Bulgaria. In 2018 he is awarded Manager of the Year in the most prestigious competition for leadership achievements in the country organised by Manager Magazine, and Alexander Dimitrov holds a Master’s degree in Electrical Machines and Apparatus from the Technical University and a Master's degree in Management and Marketing from the University of National and World Economy.


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