Tech, Nigeria’s New Oil | THISDAYLIVE

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•Meet some of Nigeria’s leading techpreneurs

Olusegun Adeniyi, Obinna Chima and Emma Okonji

With the drastic shift from agrarian, industrial and information ages, the future is now tied to providing knowledge-based solutions to practical problems in education, medicine, commerce and industry, environment and other critical areas of human endeavour. Almost on a daily basis in many countries, a new set of young entrepreneurs is emerging to seize the space. Without building factories, they simply deploy IT and basic engineering to create stupendous wealth with less manual efforts while at the same time impacting lives on universal scale. Remarkably, Nigeria is not left out of this global revolution. In fact, on the continent, Nigeria’s young men and women are taking the lead in this brave new world.

With 62,573, United States leads the way in the number of startups per country. But with 713, Nigeria ranks number 16 globally and is above countries like Sweden (663), China (589), Japan (524) and South Africa (436). The value of share and that of unicorns, which speak to the financials of these startups are of course, much lower in Nigeria. With a population of around 8.5 million, Israel also has the largest number of startups per capita in the world. But what the ranking of Nigeria regarding the number of startups shows is the potential for growth in a sector that started just about 12 years ago.

Today, THISDAY begins to profile some of these change agents, who represent the future of Nigeria in the tech world…
In the course of his state visit to Nigeria in August 2000, then American President, Mr. Bill Clinton addressed a forum of business leaders in Abuja, where he spoke about Nigeria’s past and made projections about the future. “Now, if you have ideas and imagination, the information technology has virtually collapsed the meaning of distance, and it’s made the human mind and ideas even more important than riches in the ground. So, what does that mean? What does it mean for you? What does it mean for us?” asked Clinton, who enjoined Nigerian authorities to place less emphasis on the extractive industries (especially oil and gas) and focus more on education for their young citizens, citing examples from India. In the powerful speech punctuated with humour, it was almost as if Clinton saw the future that is now set upon Nigeria.

Without any institutional support, Odunayo Eweniyi, Sim Shagaya, Neto Ikpeme, Iyinoluwa Aboyeji, Vivian Nwakah and several others have keyed into this knowledge economy, which places emphasis on the power of human imagination to create business opportunities through new entrepreneurship models that are anchored on knowhow. More remarkable is that there are inspiring stories behind many of these start-ups.
Olamide Orekunrin, a United Kingdom-based medical practitioner established ‘Flying Doctors Nigeria’ following the loss of her sister, who could not be quickly airlifted from the country for prompt medical attention abroad, Temie Giwa-Tubosun started ‘LifeBank’ to institutionalise blood donation in Nigeria after delivering a premature baby in the United States and Bilikiss Adebiyi-Abiola returned from MIT to see mountains of filth in her beloved Lagos and decided to do something about it with ‘WeCyclers’.

That these young Nigerians are deploying technology to provide solutions to everyday problems and in the process creating wealth has shown quite clearly that they are ready to be active players in, and contributors to, this age of knowledge. Indeed, the future of Nigeria can be glimpsed from the skills, knowledge and capabilities that are now being seen in these young women and men in the tech ecosystem. But there is also a message here: That these talents should not allow be allowed to waste or be shipped to another country, as a result of the Nigerian operating environment that could be hostile to innovation and creativity.

Promoting a healthy digital economy takes efforts and with the potentials being demonstrated, government (at all levels) must support these players through a more robust regulatory environment. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has taken the lead in this direction with the establishment of a Tech Sandbox in 2019. Last year, CBN followed up with the release of a draft framework. The idea is for a more formalised process for firms and startups to conduct live tests of all-new, innovative products, services, delivery channels or business models. The CBN must be commended for being forward-thinking!
Meanwhile, the venture capital (VC) scene across the African continent has consistently grown, with an influx of funding from local and international investors reaching unprecedented heights in recent years. From a meagre $400 million raised by African startups in 2015, no less than $2 billion came into the continent in 2019, according to Africa-focused fund Partech Africa. And Nigeria has consistently remained the top destination followed by Kenya, Egypt and South Africa in that order.

Against the background that the story started just about a decade ago, when Bosun Tijani and Femi Longe ventured into what is gradually becoming a goldmine, it is now clear that knowledge rather than oil is the future of Nigeria. With BudgIT, Seun Onigbindo is putting in the public domain information that helps the people to understand how their money is being spent (or wasted) and in the process reducing public sector corruption. With Agribiz4Africa, Fatima Oyiza Ademoh is rebranding agriculture as a feasible, lucrative and honourable profession that is not restricted to any gender. At Metro Africa Express (MAX), Adetayo Bamiduro and Chinedu Azodoh are using the power of technology and creative thinking to deliver goods even in chaotic cities.

It is very remarkable that within just a decade of the knowledge economy in the country, many of Nigeria’s young men and women have broken through barriers to emerge very quickly with Apps and services not only for the Nigerian market but also for the continent. Many have also extended their reach beyond the continent and are now global players. The enduring lesson from their endeavour is that with greater application of knowledge, things much smarter, much more efficiently, and much more productively can be done.

Iyinoluwa Aboyeji

With $15 million seed capital, Flutterwave co-founded by Iyinoluwa Aboyeji recently raised $170 million and currently has $1 billion valuation. Aboyeji, who became the CEO of Flutterwave in 2017 led the company in four years using its payment platform to empower people across the continent to execute business on global scale, processing in the process billions of dollars in transactions. Prior to Flutterwave, Aboyeji had co-founded Andela, with a pool of more than a thousand software engineers across the continent. Aboyeji now heads Fund for Africa’s Future where he spends time helping founders, philanthropists and investors from around the world to identify passionate and result-oriented entrepreneurs. Winner of several awards, Aboyeji also sits on the board of several institutions including Paris’ Share Africa Project, Rainbow Educational Services Limited and Filmo Realty. “We’re moving from a globalised economy to a distributed economy. This means that anyone can build anything from anywhere in the world. This requires an Africa that’s structured and thinking differently about the global economy,” says Aboyeji who is 30 today.

Odunayo Eweniyi

A serial entrepreneur, Odunayo Eweniyi co-founded pushcv.com and is now the Chief Operating Officer of PiggyVest which she also co-founded. Pushcv.com is one of the largest job sites in Africa reputed with the biggest database of pre-screened candidates. A first class graduate of Computer Engineering from Covenant University in Lagos, Eweniyi through Piggyvest enables Nigerian debit cardholders to save little amounts of money by automating the process into daily, weekly, or monthly. These individuals are then allowed to withdraw for free on some set withdrawal dates. It is a testimony to its growth trajectory that Piggyvest is already in partnership with two Microfinance banks.
In 2019, Eweniyi was named one of Forbes Africa 30 under 30 in Technology and one of 30 Quartz Africa Innovators same year. She sits on the advisory board of TrainFuture, an Education Technology company based in Switzerland, as well as the Gender Lens Acceleration Best Practices Initiative, a collaborative effort of Village Capital, US and the International Finance Corporation (IFC)’s Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (WeFi).

Sim Shagaya

After the success of Konga Store and DealDey, both of which he founded, Sim Shagaya in 2019 went into another startup, uLesson which has already secured over $3.1 million in funding from TLcom Capital. uLesson is currently the leading edtech (Education Technology) startup company for digitalized learning. Sim graduated from George Washington University, Washington DC and holds a Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Electrical Engineering. He proceeded to obtain a Master of Science degree in Engineering Management from Dartmouth College and later obtained an MBA from Harvard University in 2003.
Aimed at helping secondary school students in Nigeria to prepare for higher education, uLesson, is working on bridging the knowledge gap for K-7 to K-12 students across Africa by delivering affordable, high-quality and accessible education, using technology. Africa, according to Shagaya, “is not one place. Different needs, cultures, and curricula mean that uLesson has to carefully and deliberately think about how to design products and distribution channels to serve such a vast market. Almost daily we receive emails from families across the continent asking us to make services available to them. And in 2021, we will.”

Yanmo Omorogbe

Omorogbe is the Co-Founder & Chief Operating Officer at Bamboo. Before
founding Bamboo, she was an Investment Associate at the African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIIM). The mission of the startup is to give Nigerians a means for growing and earning returns on their investments. Bamboo’s app gives users access to buy and sell stocks of about 3,000 companies. The company partners with DriveWealth LLC, a US brokerage firm, to facilitate its trades.

Ire Aderinokun

Ire Aderinokun is currently the Co-founder, Chief Operating Officer and Vice President, Engineering of BuyCoins, a cryptocurrency exchange for Africa. She is a Google Expert, specialising in the core frontend technologies HTML, CSS, and Javascript, but is passionate about all aspects of technology.

Olugbenga Agboola

Prior to cofounding Flutterwave, Olugbenga Agboola contributed to the development of fintech solutions at several tech companies and financial institutions such as PayPal, Standard Bank, among others. Established in 2016 by a team of engineers, ex-bankers, and entrepreneurs, Flutterwave provides a seamless and easy payment system to individuals, banks, merchants, organizations, etc. Their payment solution connects Africa to the global economy by building a fintech infrastructure that can make and accept any currency anywhere within and across the continent.
Founded essentially to connect all payment types in the continent and bring a single-use payment solution, Flutterwave has expanded to 15 countries, including the United Kingdom. With headquarters in San Francisco, USA, and offices in Lagos-Nigeria, Johannesburg-South Africa, Accra-Ghana, and Nairobi-Kenya, Flutterwave has over 50 banks partnering with them across Africa. In 2019 alone, the fintech processed 107 million transactions worth $5.4 billion. The company has also raised over $55 million in equity from a long list of top VCs (Venture Capitalists), including Y-Combinator, Visa Ventures, Fintech (Financial Technology) Collective, Endeavor, Mastercard, Golden Palm Investments etc.
A software engineer with a master’s degree in information technology security and behavioral engineering, Agboola is positioning Flutterwave as a global brand with Nigerian origin.

Yele Bademosi

Bademosi is the CEO and Co-Founder of Bundle, the Africa-focused social payments app for cash and crypto. He is focused on developing the blockchain ecosystem in Africa, accelerating Africa’s transition into a sustainable and developed economy by leveraging capital, innovation and policy. He is a Founding Partner at Microtraction, which funds Africa’s most remarkable teams at early-stage startups across multiple sectors including finance and cryptocurrency.

Kunmi Demuren

Demuren is the Co-Founder at Venture Garden Group. He has over 15 years’ experience driving innovation, global strategy and rainmaking business development in the tech ecosystems in emerging markets.
Venture Garden Group (VGG) is one of the leading providers of innovative, data-driven, end-to-end technology platforms addressing reconciliation and payment processing inefficiencies across multiple sectors of the African economy. Its mission is to transform Africa by using innovative technologies to solve real socio-economic challenges in impact sectors critical to sustainable economic development. It is in the energy, healthcare, education, aviation, financial services and social services sectors.

Salisu Abdullahi

Abdullahi is the Co-founder and CEO, eTrash2Cash. The company is a social enterprise that helps low income people in Nigeria exchange all their wastes for cash incentives. Through that, it raises grassroots awareness on environmental sustainability and climate change. With this solution, all wastes collected are reprocessed and recycled into reusable materials that are environmentally friendly and sustainable. For instance, food wastes are recycled into organic compost for use by smallholder farmers, and the recycling of plastic wastes into plastic lumber, which reduces deforestation, and mitigates the effects of greenhouse gasses, which causes climate change.

Valentine Obi

Obi is the founder and Group Chief Executive Officer of e-Tranzact International Limited. e-Tranzact is Nigeria’s multi-application, multi-channel electronic transaction switching and payment processing platform. The payment platform handles billions of dollars yearly, supporting millions of forward thinking businesses and individuals who trust that their financial transactions would be taken care of by eTranzact daily.
It has today evolved into a brand with global reach, extending its innovative services to include products which cut across virtually all aspects of the e-payment space; ATM, Internet, POS, and Mobile. The company was founded in 2003 and currently has operations in South Africa, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Cote d’voire and United Kingdom.
Obi has an extensive experience in Information Technology industry
and has served in various capacities both locally and internationally. Obi developed and designed the award winning (2003 Computerworld Honors award) e-business platform of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).

Darlington Onyeagoro

Darlington is the Co-Founder/CEO of Aladdin Digital Bank. The company is a digital open bank that seamlessly combines banking and commerce. On Aladdin, customers can save, borrow, make payments and get rewarded for saving. Aladdin supports different kinds of savings such as fixed savings and target savings.
Darlington has over 10 years of retail, microfinance banking and fintech experience. He has passion for process improvement, the fintech Startup space, software prototyping, creating practical innovative solutions to solve life’s everyday problems. He is also a Learning facilitator and design consultant with experience in Curriculum design, Class Room Based Training (Soft Skills & Microsoft Office Suites) and ELearning courseware development using Articulate Storyline.

Babs Ogundeyi

Babs Ogundeyi is the CEO and Co-founder of Kuda Bank, Nigeria’s first full-service digital-only bank licensed by the central bank with a mission to make banking more accessible and affordable.
The company recently raised $25 million additional funding in its drive to become the neobank for all Africans around the world. The funding, in a ‘Series A’ was led by Valar Ventures, the firm co-founded and backed by Peter Thiel, with Target Global.
Last November, the company closed a $10m seed-funding round led by Target Global – the largest-ever seed round raised by a startup from Africa.
Kuda had also raised $1.6 million in pre-seed funding in the UK in 2019.
Ogundeyi has strong expertise in the financial services sector, having previously spent years auditing and advising some of Africa’s biggest banks. As Special Adviser on Finance to the Governor of Oyo State, he used his considerable private sector knowledge to raise the largest infrastructural bond in the state’s history.

John Obaro

Founded in 1992 with the aim of developing human capital management and financial software solutions, SystemSpecs Limited has emerged as a household name and pioneer of the software industry in Nigeria and Africa, with almost three decades of providing robust solutions to individuals, corporate organisations – small, medium and large, and governments at state and federal levels in Nigeria.
The country became popular with the creation of the Remita electronic payment solution to power the federal government’s Treasury Single Account.

In addition to being the founder and Managing Director of SystemSpecs Limited, John Obaro is a fellow of the Centre for African Policy Development and Research, Glasgow, Scotland; a fellow of Nigeria Computer Society (NCS); an ex-member of the Governing Council of Computers Professionals (Registration Council) of Nigeria (CPN) – the highest industry practice regulatory body; and a past first Vice President of the Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria (ISPON).
Having enjoyed a successful career with International Merchant Bank (IMB), John Obaro founded SystemSpecs as a West African Partner to Systems Union, UK, offering the SunSystems suite of solutions.

Mitchell Elegbe

Elegbe is the Group Managing Director of Interswitch, which is one of Nigeria’s leading technology-driven digital payments companies. The company has helped in shaping the payments ecosystem across Africa’s growing e-commerce sector. For instance, Interswitch’s broad network and robust payments platform have been instrumental to the development of the Nigerian payments ecosystem and that provided Interswitch with credibility to expand across Africa.
Today, Interswitch is a leading player with critical mass in Africa’s rapidly developing financial ecosystem and is active across the payments value chain, providing a full suite of omni-channel payment solutions. It is responsible for establishing Nigeria’s first transaction and switching infrastructure, paving the way for payment acceptance across the country. Before establishing Interswitch in 2002, Elegbe worked with TELNET as the Group Head for Business Development after an impactful time as a Wireline Engineer at Schlumberger.

Neto Ikpeme

Dr. Ikpeme Neto is an internal medicine physician turned health technology entrepreneur with business and healthcare experience spanning four continents. He left a thriving clinical practice as a doctor in 2015 to found companies and products that have gone on to improve the health and wellbeing of thousands of people on the continent. His startup, Wellahealth, was in 2019 selected for and completed the prestigious Techstars accelerator programme in the United States of America. With several international awards to his name, Ikpeme is passionate about the power of individuals to effect lasting societal change via entrepreneurship. Initially an e-health startup focusing on pharmacy automation, WellaHealth now offers affordable healthcare coverage to protect families from the financial shock that comes from unexpected health emergencies.

Fatima Oyiza Ademoh

With a BSc in Finance from the American University of Nigeria and an MSc in Financial Risk Management from the University of Leeds, the 2016 experience as a Mandela Washington Fellow at the University of California fired Fatima Oyiza Ademoh’s interest in renewable energy and agriculture. “I grew up in an environment where neighboring rural communities are deprived of access to modern energy services. However, most of these communities grow the foods that fed the population.
Owing to lack of access to modern energy services, the farmers in these communities lack the capacity to add value to their farm produce and in most cases perishable farm produce get spoilt when the market for such produce is not immediately available” Fatima says of what inspired her interventions in agriculture and renewable energy. “Absence of electricity has also denied the people access to clean water, quality education, and healthcare services. Because of absence of electricity, robbers, under the cover of darkness, threaten the security of many communities. This bitter scenario of energy poverty I witnessed has engraved the interest in tackling energy poverty in my heart.”

Eloho Omame Gihan-Mbelu

As co-founder of FirstCheck Africa, Eloho Omame believes in the massive but underleveraged potential of the next generation of female founders. In 2018, she launched Endeavor Nigeria, an entrepreneurship network for high-impact founders leading high-growth technology companies at the scaleup stage. A year earlier, Omame had collaborated with the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund to conceptualise and build Lagos Innovates, a portfolio of startup support programme. With experience spanning over 15 years in investment banking across European and African markets, Omame is deploying her expertise in finance to help companies at all stages, including startups.
Omame holds a first degree in Economics from the London School of Economics & Political Science and a master’s in Business Administration from the London Business School. She is a board member at Endeavor Nigeria, an advisory board member at Utopia Lagos, and Chair of the finance & capital sub-committee of the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund’s MSME Recovery Fund. Along with Eweniyi, Omame is working to advance equity, capital and leadership for a generation of women in Africa through technology and entrepreneurship.

Temie Giwa-Tubosun

In February 2014 Ms. Temi Giwa-Tubosun’s delivered a premature baby in a hospital in Minnesota, United States. She describes the delivery process as “complicated and harrowing.” The experience led her to reflect on the plight of many other Nigerian women not so fortunate to travel abroad to have a baby. Two years later, she founded LifeBank, a logistics company that collects blood from registered blood banks and delivers it to patients in hospitals.
Celebrated at home and abroad as an epitome of social entrepreneurship, Giwa-Tubosun is using a business model to solve a major social problem. She has been featured in international media and has met some of the world’s richest persons, including Chinese billionaire and founder of Alibaba, Jack Ma, as well as Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg. When Zuckerberg visited Nigeria in 2016, just after LifeBank launched, he said: “This is a thing [LifeBank] that needs to exist. If she can actually pull it off, she’ll show a model that will impact not just Lagos, not just Nigeria, but countries all around the world.”

Anike Lawal

An accomplished consultant as well, Anike Lawal founded Mamalette to help women in Africa through pregnancy and childcare. In just eight years of its launch in 2013, Mamalette has reached no fewer than four million parents on the continent and the platform encompasses tutorials, expert panels and competitions. It has a thriving online community of over 300,000 followers.
The main focus of Mamalette is to improve health outcomes for expectant and new mothers who are vulnerable or socially marginalised while simultaneously providing employment opportunities for women generally. Lawal’s own experience of managing her career alongside childcare were a direct inspiration for the platform. She explained: “It was a very new and confusing phase of my life and I found that balancing motherhood with my career was almost impossible. I launched Mamalette to help other mothers in the same situation.”
Once the platform began to flourish, Lawal realised the extent of the challenges that African mothers face during pregnancy and childbirth. “One in five children in Nigeria never reach the age of five,” she said. “From my interactions with other mothers I realised this was an area where I could help. I brought my consulting experience to bear by doing research in the field and conducting focus groups about how mothers experience the healthcare system in the country. That allowed me to understand what the problems and issues were and it focused my work towards solving them.”

Bilikiss Adebiyi-Abiola

Co-founded in 2012 using low-cost cargo bicycles as a brainchild of Bilikss Adebiyi-Abiola, WeCyclers offers waste collection and recycling services to informal settlements in Lagos State. More than 5,000 households have already signed up for the service and there are plans to extend the initiative to other cities throughout Nigeria. Bilikiss sees huge potential in this sector, with Nigeria’s recycling plants in dire need of end products. While WeCyclers directly employs 52 staff with indirect jobs for thousands of low-income earners, Bilikiss believes that if properly harnessed, the Nigerian recycling sector could create 500,000 jobs.
Bilikiss initially developed the idea for her business in the United States while studying at the MIT Sloan School of Management. This followed a five-year career as a corporate software engineer at IBM where she gained invaluable business and technology experience. Whilst at MIT, she was assigned to a study project aimed at finding solutions to help people at the bottom of the social pyramid.
As a part of the process, residents are offered an incentive for collecting their household waste, which is picked up for free by Wecyclers using specially adapted bicycles. To create incentives among low-income households to participate, rewards are given to them for every kilogramme recycled, via points sent by SMS. These points are then redeemable against goods they value, such as cell phone minutes or basic food items. The rewards have been funded in partnership with big brands such as Coca Cola and GlaxoSmithKline.

Vivian Nwakah

Medsaf is a tech-enabled medication supply chain management solution for hospitals and pharmacies established by Vivian Nwakah who grew up in Chicago, United States. Her first venture in Nigeria was a renewable energy company, focused on hybrid diesel solar installations. However, she returned to the healthcare field after witnessing the widespread issue of fake medication in Nigeria firsthand. The goal of Medsaf is to reduce preventable death and streamline the pharmaceutical industry.

Olamide Orekunrin

Born, raised and trained in the United Kingdom, Orekunrin graduated as one of the youngest medical doctors in England. She is also a trainee helicopter pilot. Determined to improve the healthcare delivery system in Nigeria, she set up Flying Doctors Nigeria, the first and only full air ambulance service in the sub-region. Since then, she has successfully steered the company upwards in achieving its corporate goals and ensuring sustained growth. Quick reaction times are fundamental to the 28-year-old trauma doctor. The young British-Nigerian doctor is the founder and managing director of Flying Doctors Nigeria Ltd
London-born Orekunrin was inspired to launch the company in the aftermath of a tragedy that struck her family while she was in medical school in Britain. Her 12-year-old sister was on holiday in Nigeria and unexpectedly needed emergency treatment. The nearest clinic wasn’t able to treat her. The family scrambled to find an air ambulance to move her to an appropriate facility, but the quickest available service was several away in South Africa. Her sister had died by the time it was available.

Shola Akinlade

Akinlade is the co-founder and CEO of Paystack, one of the disrupters making bold move to change the face of Nigeria’s payment system. Paystack is a modern payments platform that allows Nigerian merchants to receive funds from anyone, anywhere in the world. In October last year, Stripe, an American financial services and software company acquired Paystack in a deal estimated to be about $200 million. Paystack is a growth engine for modern businesses in Africa. The Paystack platform serves over 17,000 businesses, and process over 15 per cent of all online payments in Nigeria.

Chijioke Dozie

Chijioke Dozie is a co-Founder and CEO of Carbon, formerly Paylater. He was previously an Investment Analyst at the International Finance Corporation (IFC) responsible for sourcing investment opportunities in Sub-Saharan Africa. Prior to IFC, Chijioke worked with Zephyr Management LP in the US and South Africa. Carbon Finance & Investments Limited is licensed and regulated by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). It empowers individuals with credit, simple payments solutions, high-yield investment opportunities, and easy-to-use tools for personal financial management.
Its Founders, Chijioke Dozie and Ngozi Dozie, Developed Carbon as a digital bank made for Africans. Carbon began operations in 2012 and within the space of six years, it grew revenue steadily, reaching an all-time high of $17.5 million in full-year 2019 and has expanded its product offerings to the Kenyan market.

Michael Simeon

Simeon is the CEO of VoguePay. VoguePay is a secure payment processor and e-commerce service founded in Nigeria in 2012. It offers personal digital wallets and business payment accounts to users worldwide. Individuals can send and receive payments from other VoguePay accounts, similar to PayPal. And businesses can sign up with VoguePay to receive and process online payments from customers through a website or by email. VoguePay’s focus is making it easy for small businesses in Nigeria to transfer money, a country in which going “cashless” used to be an expensive prospect for startups. Competing with online money transfer giants like PayPal, VoguePay aims to make online transfers accessible to everyone.

Chika Madubuko

Madubuko founded Africa’s pioneer tech-enabled on-demand home care platform, Greymate Care, which generates millions in revenue and has signed dozens of partnerships with notable institutions including Sociète Generale, Intel, UNDP, Renault and Lagos State Employment Trust Fund. Greymate Care is one of Africa’s fastest growing businesses and has measurable social impact and track records including alleviating unemployment and improving elderly longevity and well-being.
She is passionate about startups, business process transformation and improvement, business analysis aimed at disrupting industries by updating businesses from traditional methods to current digital systems, solving business problems and designing technical solutions, identifying new business opportunities, solving everyday problems using technology and creating social impact. Over the years, she has led B2B sales teams to triple companies’ revenue and worked closely with project stakeholders to change the business landscape of blue chip companies such as Amazon and her experience spans three continents: North America, Africa and Europe.

Chinedu Azodoh

Azodoh is co-founder and CGO at MAX.NG, a technology company building the infrastructure for last-mile mobility in Africa. Chinedu has always had a passion to change the African experience. The MAX app provides a last mile delivery service option. Azodoh attended the Sloan School of Management in Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he graduated with a master’s degree in finance.

Evans Akanno

Akanno is a Nigerian tech entrepreneur, brand and social media strategist, and tech creative director. He is the founder of Cregital. He is regarded as one of the most thriving young tech entrepreneurs in Nigeria. He was named among 2019 Forbes Africa 30 under 30 in the technology category. The company is a designer, developer and problem solver.

Fred Oyetayo

Fred Oyetayo is the CEO of Fresible and serves on its Board of Directors. He is responsible for setting the overall direction and product strategy for the company. He leads the design of Fresible’s service and development of its core technology and departments. He had been named to Forbes 30 Under 30 and SME100 Africa’s 25 Under 25, among others. Fresible is a team of creative thinkers, developers, designers and digital marketers. It develops websites, softwares, mobile applications, create identities, tell stories, build brands, organise events and ignite growth to individual and businesses.

Tunde Kehinde

Tunde Kehinde is the Co-Founder of Lidya. Through its digital platform, Lidya analyses over 1,000 data points to help great business owners access financing and build a credit score through an easy and inspiring lending process.
Tunde Kehinde is a seasoned emerging markets entrepreneur. He was the co-founder of Jumia Nigeria, Africa’s first unicorn (publicly listed on the NYSE) and Africa Courier Express, Nigeria’s leading last-mile eCommerce delivery company. Experienced Entrepreneur with a demonstrated history of working with small businesses across multiple frontier markets is also skilled in business planning, analytical skills, market research, management, and corporate development.



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