Impact Stories from Entrepreneurship Policy Area
Fellow recognized as a leading Kenyan scientist
Fellow(s): Chao Mbogo
2017 fellow of Kenya Dr. Chao Mbogo was recognized as one of the Faces of Kenyan Science during Africa Science Week, a week-long initiative of the Next Einstein Forum that takes place in 35 countries across the continent. The Faces of Kenyan Science campaign features exceptional Kenyan researchers, practitioners, innovators, makers and educators making a difference in Kenya.
Chao, selected as one of 20 leaders out of 200 nominees, was recognized for being an award-winning mentor and founder of the initiative KamiLimu, a mentorship program for computer science students. During the week’s events, Chao gave a presentation for the segment “Stories Behind the Science,” where she spoke about her journey in science and her hopes for impacting future generations of computer scientists.
Report Date: 12/3/18
Fellows nominated for digital entrepreneur award
Fellow(s): Mpara Faith, Horore Bebga
Cohort: 2017, 2018
Two TechWomen fellows are nominated for “Best Digital Entrepreneur” at the upcoming Bonteh Digital Media Awards, held next month in Douala. The award ceremony is part of Bonteh Media Network, a leading digital media and communications agency in Cameroon.
Mpara Faith (2017) is nominated for her work as the co-founder of New Generation Technologies, a software development and IT consulting company. 2018 fellow Horore Bebga is being recognized as the founder and CEO of Likalo 2.0, a digital agency and education center.
The event, the first of its kind in Cameroon, aims to showcase leading founders and entrepreneurs in the technology and communication fields throughout the country.
Report Date: 11/26/18
Fellow wins Young Entrepreneur Award
Fellow(s): Nomso Kana
Country: South Africa
This month, 2013 fellow of South Africa Nomso Kana was awarded the Young Entrepreneur Award by the African Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum. The annual conference brings together 1,200 female leaders with a mission to empower, educate and encourage sustainable economic development throughout Africa.
Nomso, selected out of 450 nominees, was recognized for Sun ‘n Shield Technologies, the telecommunications company she founded. Sun ‘n Shield provides fiber optic manufacturing services, bringing internet accessibility to South Africa and the greater African continent. “This award is amazing encouragement,” says Nomso. “It will help us forge forward and continue to put up broadband infrastructure in Southern Africa and Africa, ensuring essential seamless internet access for all Africans.”
Report Date: 11/19/2018
Fellow selected as TEF2018 entrepreneur
Fellow(s): Oluremi Hamid
2016 fellow of Nigeria Oluremi Hamid was recently selected to participate in an entrepreneurship program run through the The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF). The foundation, Africa’s largest philanthropic initiative, promotes entrepreneurship throughout the continent. Oluremi was among 1,400 entrepreneurs selected out of a total of 158,000 applicants. Soon, she will begin TEF’s 12-week program that equips startups with basic skills required to launch and run their businesses at early growth stages. Paired with a mentor to guide her through the program, Oluremi will learn how to more effectively start and scale a business and will learn tools for marketing strategy and product design. At the end of the program, each entrepreneur will receive a $5,000 seed grant.
Oluremi recently launched Hydren Energy, a business that builds mobile solar stations for small business owners. The stations harness solar power during the day, store it for use at night and allow business owners to move the unit between their home and workplace. The TEF seed grant will enable Oluremi produce three mobile solar station units for her target market.
Report Date: 11/12/2018
Fellow wins entrepreneurship grant at United Nations conference
Fellow(s): Patu Ndango Fen
2017 fellow of Cameroon Patu Ndango Fen was awarded a $10,000 grant at this year’s Africa Youth Conference. The conference, sponsored by UN Women and supported by partners such as UNICEF and UNESCO, aims to create an avenue for young people to contribute to development of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Prior to the conference, Patu, a social entrepreneur and innovator, was selected as a finalist for the YAS Open Innovation Challenge, a combined initiative of the United Nations Development Programme and Accenture. At the conference, Patu and nine other entrepreneurs were announced as grant winners for their projects that directly support the fulfillment of the SDGs. Patu’s social enterprise, Closed-Loop System Ventures, specializes in waste management, transforming plant and animal waste into organic fertilizer that can be used in farming and aquaculture. With the grant, Patu plans to construct a warehouse and rent a large-capacity waste collection truck.
In addition to receiving her award, Patu participated on a panel at the conference centered around pitching, presenting and storytelling from a marketing and branding perspective.
Report Date: 10/29/2018
Fellow wins Stevie Award for women in business
Fellow(s): Hiba Shabrouq
Hiba Shabrouq, 2017 fellow of Jordan, has won a Stevie Award for Women in Business. Selected by a specialized jury, Hiba was named as Employee of the Year in Telecommunications. The Stevie Awards were created in 2002 to honor and generate public recognition of the achievements and positive contributions of organizations and working professionals worldwide. Hiba will join other Stevie Award finalists in New York City to receive either a gold, silver or bronze award at the Stevie Awards’ 15th annual gathering in November.
Hiba, the only Jordanian woman named in the telecommunications field, was recognized for her work as a product marketing expert at Orange, one of the largest operators of mobile and internet services in Europe and Africa and a global leader in corporate telecommunication services. While in the TechWomen program, Hiba was hosted by LinkedIn. Recently, Hiba was one of four fellows who participated in The Global Summit in Jordan.
Report Date: 10/8/2018
Two fellows named to Kenya’s 40 under 40 list
Fellow(s): Topy Muga, Lucy Wanjiku-Mutinda
Cohort: 2016, 2017
Two TechWomen fellows were named Top 40 Under 40 in Kenya by Business Daily. Topy Muga (2017) and Lucy Mutinda (2016) are among entrepreneurs, academics, researchers, philanthropists and leaders in tech, all selected for the honor based on their influence and leadership in their respective fields.
Topy, the senior director of financial inclusion for Sub-Saharan Africa at Visa, was formerly the head of Airtel Money at Airtel Kenya. She is a mentor at Zawadi Africa Education Fund, and her team’s TechWomen action plan project, Project Digniti, was selected as a seed grant winner during TechWomen 2017. Lucy is the CEO and founder of Ecocycle, a company that provides zero-waste products and services. A product engineer by trade, Lucy turns sewage into clean water, installing water recycling machines in homes and hotels throughout Kenya and promoting water re-use and environmental conservation. Lucy’s action plan team was also awarded a seed grant for their impact project, One Desk One Child, during TechWomen 2016.
While in the TechWomen program, Topy was hosted at Big Commerce and Lucy was hosted at San Francisco Department of the Environment.
Report Date: 9/24/18
Mentor(s): Rekha Pai, Erin Keeley, Maile Smith, Diana Macias, Bianca Lederer, Sandra Chen
Company: Cresta Ventures, Facebook, Genentech, Twitter, Western Digital
Mentor Type: Impact, Professional
A group of six TechWomen mentors traveled to Malaysia to lead programming to empower, connect and support the next generation of women leaders in STEM fields. Supported by the U.S. Department of State and working closely with U.S. Embassy Kuala Lumpur, Rekha Pai (of Cresta Ventures), Erin Keeley (Western Digital), Maile Smith (Northgate Environmental Management), Diana Macias (Twitter), Bianca Liederer (Genentech) and Sandra Chen (Facebook) met with government representatives, women in the workforce, youth leaders, entrepreneurs and government-sponsored incubators throughout the country.
Rekha, a longtime TechWomen mentor, previously traveled to Malaysia, Brunei and Singapore as part of the U.S. Speakers Program, sponsored by the Bureau of International Information Programs. Following the success of her earlier trip, Rekha was invited back and assembled a team of mentors, nearly all of whom have participated in past TechWomen delegation trips, to join the “Women in Tech Delegation.” The group participated as judges and mentors at the National Science Challenge, a premier science competition that included 2,400 teams from over 50,000 students throughout Malaysia. They also visited Penang Science Cluster and met entrepreneurs at MaGIC, Malaysia’s government-sponsored global innovation and incubation center.
Report Date: 8/13/2018
Fellow named one of 20 young Nigerians to watch
Fellow(s): Olamide (Mide) Ayeni
Olamide (Mide) Ayeni, 2017 fellow of Nigeria, has been featured in 20 Young Nigerians to Watch in 2018 by Ripples Nigeria. The list celebrates young Nigerians who “have made a great positive impact on their environment and chosen field.” Mide was highlighted for her social enterprise organization, Pearl Recycling, which pays people to collect solid waste items such as plastic, car tires, wood, newspapers and other recyclables in order to turn them into furniture. Mide’s recycled creations include coffee tables, chairs, mirrors, flower vases and wall décor. She started this initiative in the hopes that it would mitigate the growing amount of waste in Lagos that is often dumped into the ocean or burned.
Ripples Nigeria is a multimedia online news platform based in Nigeria that reports on politics and the economy.Read More »
Report Date: 4/23/2018
Team Cameroon makes progress on action plan project
Fellow(s): Beatrice Nguimkeng, Danielle Akini, Meyo Zongo, Mpara Faith and Patu Ndango
Team Cameroon, one of five teams to win a $3,000 seed grant during the 2017 program for their action plan project, has taken exciting steps to reach their goal. The team members – Beatrice Nguimkeng, Danielle Akini, Meyo Zongo, Mpara Faith and Patu Ndango – proposed a project called Able Too, which aims to train teachers who work with special needs children. The team plans to create an online platform that will connect 300 trained teachers and specialists to other teachers and parents to enable the sharing of resources, experiences and expertise to best engage and support schoolchildren with special needs.
Thus far, the team has selected special education experts and communicated their mission to parents of special needs children. Most recently, they developed a web platform for ABLE Too that includes a blog, chat forums and a library with resources about different types of special needs. This platform is intended to empower parents and teachers who work with special needs children and provide them with useful information and strategies.Read More »
Report Date: 4/16/2018