Africa has proven to be one of the continents of the world that has the fastest-growing economies. Everyday, Africa continues to give birth to new and vibrant businessmen that are set to transform the economy of this wonderful and rich continent. At the moment, there is a rising number of young Africans who are building fast-growing companies in food manufacturing, engineering, technology, hospitality, and any other industry you can think of. They are creating wealth as well as jobs, paying taxes, igniting the entrepreneurial spark among their peers, and most importantly, playing vital roles in the continent’s economic transformation. Ask these young Africans how they got to where they are and they’ll tell you it’s just hard work, and I fully agree with them. This is a wonderful opportunity for you to get to know these young and very promising sun beams in Africa. Who knows, just knowing them could go a long way to help you become one soon.
1. Sangu Delle – Ghanaian
CEO, Golden Palm investments
Sangu is a 28-year-old vibrant and very influential Ghanaian entrepreneur. He is the brains behind Golden Palm Investments, Ghana. A holding company that invests in early stage venture and growth capital financing across Africa, particularly in real Estate, healthcare, agribusiness and technology. The GPI has backed startups such as SOLO Mobile in Nigeria, mPharma in Ghana and Stawi Foods in Kenya. In healthcare, he and his team have built a successful chain of hospitals in Ghana, which they hope to expand into the region. He graduated from the Havard Business School and is currently running an MBA in the Havard Law School. He is a fast rising entrepreneur with great and enviable business initiatives and passion towards bringing about significant changes in the life of Africans.
2. Ally Edha Awadh – Tanzanian
CEO, Lake Oil Group
Lake group of companies, founded by Ally Edha Awadh was registered in the year 2005 and commenced its operations in March 2006 in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, just as an Oil Marketing Company. Lake group owns Lake Oil ltd, Lake gas ltd and Lake trans ltd, Gulf premix ltd. Lake group also entered into Cylinder manufacturing. It is now one of the 5 largest distributors of petroleum products in Tanzania and exports to neighboring countries including D.R.Congo, Zambia, Burundi and Rwanda. The company also has a 35 million-liter storage depot at Kigamboni, Dar es Salaam and another depot in Mbeya, a commercial city in the country’s southwest region. The transport/haulage arm of the company, Lake Trans, owns and operates close to 500 trucks and serves as a regional contractor for commodities giants like Trafigura and Augusta. Lake Oil Group’s revenues for 2013 were $600 million. This young and vibrant entrepreneur, Ally Edha Awadh is just 32 years old.
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3. Isaac Oboth – Ugandan
CEO, Media 256
Media256 Ltd was started in 2010 by Isaac Oboth. The 26-year-old is the CEO of his own successful film production company, having risked it all by quitting university to start Media265. Orphaned at a young age, Isaac learned early on the importance of making a living by creating opportunities. After being disappointed by the work of a local videographer contracted by his classmates, he decided to “do it better” and go into film production. Completely self-taught, he started by watching online video tutorials for hours on end at a local internet café and ultimately founded Media256, a film and video production company. Now, Media256 has a client list that includes Coca Cola, UNDP, USAID, the Ethiopian Commodities Exchange, Marie Stopes International, the African Leadership Network, and the African Leadership Academy.
4. Adii Pienaar – South African
Adii Pienaar, 29, was one of 3 co-founders of Woothemes, a company that designs and develops customizable commercial themes and plugins for WordPress. He and his partners saw the need for slick, professionally designed WordPress themes with advanced functionality. Adii and Mark had been developing blogs for their own clients, experimenting with different designs and features and learning how to make WordPress look awesome, and so they founded WooThemes with the dream of sharing this awesomeness with a broad audience.
Adii built the business with a bootstrap budget, and the company today generates over $3 million in annual revenues from the sale of its themes. Pienaar has since exited the company; he now runs PublicBeta, a service that allows successful entrepreneurs to transfer knowledge to new startups. In 2013, the company turned over more than $2 million that financial year, with Entrepreneur magazine estimating 20% of the web was powered by their software.
See also: 20 Richest People of All Time
5. Uche Pedro – Nigerian
Uche Pedro is a 32-year-old Nigerian entrepreneur, who is the founder of Bellanaija, an entertainment, fashion and lifestyle website. She is one of the most popular bloggers in Nigeria, and her site which she created in 2006, has grown to become one of the hottest destination for celebrity news and fashion trends on the Internet, attracting more than 10 million page views per month.