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HomeCEO SeriesWhat You Should Know About MaGIC's New CEO Dzuleira Abu Bakar

What You Should Know About MaGIC's New CEO Dzuleira Abu Bakar

After a period of radio silence, the Malaysian Ministry of Entrepreneur Development today announced the appointment of Dzuleira Abu Bakar to the post of CEO at the Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Centre (MaGIC).

Dzuleira replaces former CEO Ashran Ghazi, who vacated the post in December last year after he announced his decision to resign and move to consumer intelligence company Dattel as CEO.

Dzuleira will nowtake the reigns at MaGIC, with one of her major responsibilitiesbeing the rejuvenation of the agency that at one point had its futurein doubt following the shifting of governments caused by last year’sgeneral elections.

With the start of anew era at hand for MaGIC, we take a closer look at the new CEO andher background.

1. Education

Dzuleira is aMalaysian-made professional, with her degrees in law and managementboth coming from renown local universities.

She first completedher Bachelor’s degree in law at Universiti Teknologi Mara beforemoving on to Universiti Malaya to complete her Master’s in BusinessAdministration and Management, where she specialised in fields suchas business and financial strategy among other things.

2. Background InInvestments

Even prior to herappointment as MaGIC CEO, Dzuleira brings with her extensiveexperience in the fields of venture capitalism and private equity.

Before her new stintat MaGIC, Dzuleira held the position of CEO and General Partner atCradle Seed Ventures, where she was tasked with scouting high-growthtech businesses around the regions nearby Malaysia.

She also hadprevious roles at Malaysia Venture Capital Management Berhad (MAVCAP)where she was vice president of investments, Usaha Tegas Management,Maybank Investment Bank, and also Khazanah Nasional.

From what’sobservable, MaGIC doesn’t have a strong invesment agenda, so itwill be interesting to see just how Dzuleira’s skill set will beutilised in the advancement of the company, especially with itsaccelerator and mentorship programmes.

3. Experience InBuilding NPOs

Aside from growingprofitable businesses, Dzuleira was for a period of time alsoinvolved in the growing of non-profit organisations and socialenterprises.

During her time at Khazanah Nasional, she was part of the Hasanah Foundation where she helped establish non-profit organisations and social enterprises. This experience should prove handy in revitalising MaGIC’s social entrepreneur arm that’s been relatively quiet as of late.

4. Strong Advocate For Women Empowerment

Finally, Dzuleira isalso a vocal supporter for equal gender opportunities in theworkplace, having participated as a panelist in events such asStandard Chartered’s Press For Progress Women Forum—an eventmeant to create discussion about women leadership and to inspire thenext generation of female leaders.


Now with the appointment of Dzuleira as CEO of MaGIC, there will be plenty of eyes on how the company forges ahead with its plans to develop the startup and entrepreneur community locally.

Will there be a shift in where it wants to focus its efforts?

Will we see some programmes be repurposed to achieve different end goals?

Also, thisappointment marks the second female CEO appointment to three ofMalaysia’s startup and tech development agencies with vacantpositions. Earlier this year, Surina Shukri took up the position atMDEC, and Cradle Fund is still yet to announce their appointmentfollowing the unfortunate death of former incumbent Nazrin Hassanlast year.

This obviously presents plenty of observations regarding the willingness among the those in power to give opportunities to female leaders to prove themselves, and it will be interesting to see if this trend will be something permanent.

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Feature Image Credit: Cradle Seed Ventures & MaGIC

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