Entrepreneurship

There is a universal problem, that no one is talking about; a problem if when solve will create lasting business leaders, professionals, political leaders and prosperity at both personal and universal levels.

Dr. Alfred Mbeteh

Founder De'Victors

Alfred is a highly recognized mentor, researcher, lecturer and business strategist whose experience has helped his students and clients experience astronomical growth within a very short period of time, he owns a Ph.D. in Business (Entrepreneurship) -University of West London

Hamid Gbawuru Marah

Director & Managing Partner Sas Consult

A private sector development, value chain, market systems and agribusiness development expert with distinctive entrepreneurial instincts and proven strengths in providing business analysis, solutions, direction, capacity and adaptable strategies that have carried many businesses (of all sizes) in Sierra Leone through steady and continuous growth. Hamid is currently the SME TA Facility Manager a world bank/MTI/MAF project.

Alfred Akibo-Betts

Co-Founder Freetown Business School

Alfred is an internationally acclaimed tax expert and business leader. A Fellow of both the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (FCCA) and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Sierra Leone (FCA).  As a Senior Manager, who was responsible to lead the Goods and Services Tax in Sierra Leone, he has developed skills in strategic planning, change management, team leadership, interpersonal relations, organizational management, motivation, project management amongst others to produce results.

DOUGLAS WONG

Investor and Mentor

Douglas Wong is the ex-CFO for Apple CEE and the Founder of ADC Blackfire Entertainment, a toy company of 110 employees in three countries, and customers in 70. Three successful exits. Now mentor and investor.

Andrew Caramba-Coker

Director - Digital Solutions at DXC Technology

Andrew has 20+ years experience helping clients transform by managing teams to design and deliver innovative and transformative digital solutions, initially with Mobile, Web, Enterprise Integration inc SOA, Business Intelligence and now Internet Of Things (IoT), (AI & Machine Learning, Immersive technologies, Virtual Assistants, etc).

Prince Taylor ACCA, CPA, CPFA

Senior Manager PwC Liberia

Prince Taylor is a Senior Manager in PricewaterhouseCoopers Liberia with expertise in financial management, public sector assurance reviews, risk assessment and taxation with over 15 years of working experience in Liberia and Sierra Leone. Prince has provided a wide range of assurance and advisory services to private and public sector organizations in the sub-region.

Raphael Marrah

SME Development Specialist

Raphael is an SME Development Specialist and a certified IFC/TPMA Trainer. He currently works with the Government of  Sierra Leone in a World Bank project aimed at strengthening agro‐processing competitiveness. Raphael has more than 12 years’ experience in the broader Private Sector Development, with a record to have interacted with, trained, and coached more than 500+ SMEs over the last decade.

Naomi Muthama

Business Development Specialist

By profession, Naomi is an experienced business development and strategy specialist with experience in both the private and public sectors. She also worked in procurement, logistics, sales and distribution, and legal industries. Over the years she has gained vast experience and skills in business administration, marketing, brand development, supply chain and logistics, sales and distribution and have an in-depth understanding of automation of business process with ERP and SAP academic certification.

For years, she has been part of an organization, Positive Action Kenya, through which she has been working towards building capacity and creating an informed, empowered, and innovative youth. She played a key role in designing and implementing the Tusome Initiative; a program geared to support academic learning in slum areas, fostering quality and holistic education through after school programs. The program since 2016 has directly impacted 827 children and youth from slum areas in Kenya.

Dr. Yakama M. Jones

Economist, Educator, Entrepreneur

Dr. Mrs. Yakama Manty Jones (Nee Mara) is the youngest female director in the Government of Sierra Leone’s Civil Service in which she currently leads the Research and Delivery Division in the Ministry of Finance. Dr. Jones has a proven track record of civil and public service having started her career as a Budget Analyst at the Budget Bureau. Dr. Jones is an expert in Development Economics, Finance, International Business, Economic Policy, Econometrics, Data Analysis, Delivery Systems, and Project Management.

Dr.Jones is an entrepreneur and the Chief Executive Officer of Peninsular Innovation Group, an indigenous company operating in the shipping and manufacturing industries in Sierra Leone. The company is also one of the leading manufactures of consumables under the brand ‘Crystal Clear’ where they currently produce products such as water, detergent powder, carbonated soft drinks, and fruit juices.

Rachel Lwantale

Founder and Ceo Imali ltd

Rachel is the CEO/Founder of Imali a women-focused social enterprise whose mandate is to elevate disenfranchised groups and assist business startups. She is, certified in Agribusiness and graduated with Leadership in Business at Drake University.  With a natural passion for entrepreneurship and bettering individuals’ lives, Imali encompasses these two values in our business model. A driven business consultant with proven and tested skills in Agribusiness, business & project design, grant/project proposals, company profiling, personal development, business model development, startup business set up, and strategies; with a firm insight in working with the complex markets in emerging economies, foreseeing future gaps, institutional voids, and investment opportunities.

Adaeze Zita Edokwe

Regional Event Manager Seedstars

She is Presently the Regional Event Manager for Africa at Seedstars (arguable world largest platform for tech-startup in emerging markets), She plans and manages events, partnerships, programs, and logistics in over 24 countries in Africa helping Seedstars expand its companies and services across Africa. In these events and training, she ensures constant interaction with the most active tech startup ecosystem builders in each country, from corporates to governments, startups, mentors, and investors.

Gboyega Olorunfemi

Principal Consultant and Mentor

Gboyega possesses over 15 years of experience with leading Local and international Banking, Mortgage, media, and Asset management firms working for reputable market leaders, across the sectors providing cutting edge and creative solutions. He is highly skilled in core areas of Retail Sales, Relationship Management, Business Development, Credit Analysis, Mortgage, Asset & Investment Banking, and Portfolio Management, Communications Strategy. He was recently a mentor at the just concluded AfricaVsVirus challenge put together by the Africa Union Youth Forum. Gboyega is a member of consortiums of experts with the Global Emerging Pathogens Treatment Consortium (GET Consortiums), Member of the Society for Environmental Toxicology and Pollution Mitigation (SETPOM).­­­ Gboyega is the Principal Consultant / CEO of Enviromax Global Resources Limited, a company with a focus on Resource Efficiency, Environmental Consultancy, Municipal Solid Waste Management, Recycling, Sustainability, Safety and Environmental & Social Risk Governance.

Olusola Jegede

Principal Consultant Prime Heights Assoc.

Sola is an alumnus of the University of Lagos and Haggai Leadership Institute, Singapore. He is also an IFC-LPI TPMA certified Trainer, a Chartered Accountant and financial consultant with over 25 years’ experience, offering  Business Management Training, Entrepreneur Support, Mentoring/Coaching, Feasibility Studies, and Business Plans, Business Exposure & Business Planning, Business Formalization or Reorganization or change management, Financial  management, Strategy development, Operational Improvement Services, and Leadership training. Sola is a member of both the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Nigeria (ICAN) and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Sierra Leone (ICASL)

 A serial entrepreneur who has served as Managing Director/CEO of many organizations, and he is currently the Principal Consultant of Prime Heights Associates (SL) Ltd, a company with a vision to add value to all their clients and stakeholders. Sola’s overall passion is to raise excellent people in all

Chidi E. Koldsweat

Lead Consultant Donor for Africa

A multiple awards winning development professional with over 11 years’ experience in a wide array of leadership roles with crucial competence in donor coordination and engagement, communication & visibility, fundraising, and project management. And have provided technical expertise to over 400+ indigenous African organizations, raised over $750,000 in funding, and reached over 15,000 people weekly with technical knowledge through various platforms.

She managed the Nigerian Federal Government YOUWIN Grants, Dutch & American Embassy Grants, Vital Voices Global Partnership, United States Consulate Small Grants Program, ExxonMobil, UN Foundation, One.org,

Alari Mahdi

Private Sector Development Specialist – WB

Alari is a Private Sector Development Specialist with over seven years of experience working for leading development financial institutions. Her specific experience includes providing technical and strategic advice to governments on issues relating to Entrepreneurship Ecosystem building, Investment Climate reforms, SME Finance, and Financial Inclusion. Added to this, she is involved in the design and implementation supervision of multi-million-dollar development projects across Africa. Alari is passionate about serving client countries and connecting governments with cutting-edge solutions and finance to unlock the potential of the private sector for the greater good of shared prosperity and poverty alleviation. She is passionate about youth and women’s economic empowerment and supporting them to access the tools they need to contribute effectively to economic growth and social development. She’s a co-Founder of the Fourah Bay Community Learning Centre which provides mentoring and vocational skills training to disadvantaged youth and women in Sierra Leone.  Alari enjoys mentoring with previous mentoring experience with Citizens UK and the National Citizen Service UK.

Othman Abdulrasheed

Business Leadership Coach/Trainer

Othman is a Business Leadership Coach and Trainer, he is also a keynote speaker and an author.

He has a B.Eng. (Chemical Engineering) from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, M.Sc. (Oil and Gas Law) from The Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, Pg.D (Oil and Gas Supply Chain Management) from The University of Liverpool, and MBA (Marketing) from The Dangote Business School, Bayero University, Kano. He is a certified John Maxwell Coach and a Certified Behavioral Analysis Consultant. A driven results-oriented professional with over 10 years of experience in the highly competitive downstream oil and gas industry from operations, warehousing, lubricants blending, Commercial (B2B) Sales, Retail Sales and most recently being one of the inaugural teams that are building Nigeria’s fastest-growing retail network with over 80 stations in just two years of operation. Proven record of success in managing teams, sales forecasting, budget management, merchandising, vendor relationships, business and product development, training, mentoring, and staff capacity building. His work is not limited to only executives. He has a special passion for providing sustainable drinking water to impoverished communities through his WANDEC foundation.

Suzanne Hodnett

Business & Marketing Trainer & Mentor

Suzanne is an experienced business owner in the field of Digital Marketing and e-Commerce. She is a management graduate of the University of Surrey in the UK and her entrepreneurial outlook regularly leads her into exploring opportunities for others in both business and social enterprise. She is particularly passionate about small business and now works for a charity as a trainer and mentor helping entrepreneurs to plan and launch businesses as a route out of poverty. She also trains young people in project management on a UK Government-approved apprenticeship program and teaches marketing and leadership skills.


For the last 3 years, Suzanne has worked with an organization called Kisumu Children Trust, which helps to build up the opportunities of young people in Kisumu, Kenya. She promotes the work of the Trust and helps to raise awareness of the plight of many living in poverty as a passionate speaker for Kisumu Children and for Christian Aid.

Bako Ambianda

CEO of Labacorp Group of Companies (LGC)

Bako is an International Development Expert, Author of 6 Books, and a Global African Entrepreneur. He is the Chairman and CEO of Labacorp Group of Companies (LGC) with a portfolio of businesses in manufacturing, renewable energy, real estate, agriculture, and exhibition industries operating in five countries. Bako specializes in boutique investment and trade programs across the world bringing investors, high profile business leaders, and governments together to explore mutual synergies especially investing and doing business in Africa. He is a seasoned specialist dealing directly with governments and top businesses across Africa, the Middle East, and the United States. He serves as the Chairman of ATIGS Group, a USA-based company that specializes in promoting trade and investment opportunities in Africa and has facilitated over 365 million dollars in Africa as part of its programs. He has been listed on Forbes Africa 30 Under 30 – Class of 2020, named one of the Most Influential People of African Descent (Under 40) by MIPAD, and Most Admired Young Global African 2019 by PASSION VISTA. He is the founder of Africa Trade and Investment Global Summit (ATIGS), the leading prestigious Africa-global centric platform in the world. He is also the founder of Africa Worldwide Alliance Partnerships (AfriWAPA), Solar Business Events, and Afridevelopism Institute. Armed with the knowledge, expertise, and understanding of business opportunities that exist in Africa, Bako speaks regularly at international gatherings on Doing Business in Africa.

Ariana Oluwole

Entrepreneur and Blogger

Ariana is multiple award-winning entrepreneur in the educational-sector.  She is the Owner/Proprietress of Narnia Educational Group, an educational Consultancy and an early learning centre which caters for children between the ages of 0-3 years. Narnia prepares young minds at one of the most critical learning periods in their life; equipping them with the knowledge, skills, values and confidence necessary to successfully adapt to an increasingly complex world. Narnia has revolutionized how early childhood development and learning is viewed in Sierra Leone.  Narnia is accredited by the Network Teaching Children i. e NTC system of learning; which is acknowledged by MENSA, The European Union, UNICEF and Montessori learning partners In 2019, Ariana was named as one of Sierra Leone’s 100 Most Influential Youths and Ambassadors by FePYoCAN in collaboration with the Government of Sierra Leone through the Ministry of Youth Affairs and the National Youth Commission (NaYCom). Recently, she was listed by 100 Women Nigeria and the BRYNE Foundation as one of the 100 women in West Africa who are making an impact in the world and their local communities with the power and strength of their ideas and achievements. In December 2019, she became a UNDP Africa Youth Fellow.  She has worked with numerous multinationals in problem-solving and creating solutions around project management, systems, and implementation of work protocols; creating formidable workforces that are making history.  She is passionate about startups and works with people and businesses to actualise their own dreams.  Ariana has a great passion for writing; this can be seen on her lifestyle blog www.arianadiaries.com where she has created a platform to share content and stories that inspire people to reach for the stars daily.  She has a growing interest in learning and development as a catalyst for boosting an industrious Africa. When it comes to training and facilitation her work is rooted in creating a holistic development. She focuses on the following outcomes for professionals and emerging leaders: Leadership, Stress management techniques, Team building, Assertiveness and Emotional development.

Saber Bellaaj

Entrepreneur, Consultant Export, Coach RNCP

Saber is a multidisciplinary entrepreneur and lives it perfectly. He considers It is stimulating and motivating and do not know how to be bored, He can mobilize everything in his power to integrate new knowledge. Saber feels that he is living a very beneficial experience from his personal point of view, which continuously strengthening his self-confidence. Learning for him is a huge pleasure and he stands with a simple quote “Strive not to be successful, but rather to be useful”. His main values: respect, organization, work. Saber’s areas of expertise: Strategy and management, marketing and communication, international relations, Support and intervention in crisis situations. He also has foreknowledge in; construction, wood and derivatives, building materials, building chemistry, international trade, and business consultancy.

William Conteh

Entrepreneur and Analyst

William Conteh is an Analyst at the World Bank Group and a Lecturer at the Institute of Public Administration and Management (IPAM), the business school of the University of Sierra Leone, is a Sierra Leonean national, based in Freetown. He holds an MBA degree.

At the World Bank Group, William is experienced in working on private sector development initiatives in African fragile nations including Sierra Leone and Liberia.  For over 5 years now, William has been working on a program that covers over 20 states in Africa called the Fragile and Conflict-Affected Situations (FCS) in Africa, under the International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group. At IPAM, William teaches and researches entrepreneurship, Small and Medium Enterprises and other related subject matter.

William is also active in several entrepreneurial start-ups in Entrepreneurship in Sierra Leone.

Habib Bangura

Entrepreneur and Education policy Expert

Habib is an entrepreneur and expert in education policy and practice. He currently serves as the National Director of Implementation and Continuous Improvement with a national education non-profit in the U.S. where he’s helped grow their operations into six states, 50+ School districts, and 140+ schools which collectively impact over 40K students. In addition to the excellent education he received at International School in Njala, as well as  Leone Prep, Cockrill prep, and Grammar School in Freetown, Habib holds graduate degrees from Johns Hopkins and Harvard University. In his spare time, Habib finds ways to add value to others through service, mentorship, or facilitating valuable network connections. Habib is a loving husband, father, and avid reader who looks forward to visiting every country on the continent and finds inspiration in the speeches, writings, and philosophies of the many leaders of the African liberation struggles of the 60s, 70s, and 80s. 

 

Fatima Sesay

Founder/ Managing Director Unimax sl ltd.

Fatima is the founder and Managing Director of UNIMAX SL Ltd (Logistics, Haulage, Delivery, Courier Clearing and Freight Forwarding Company) and Get Well Pharmacy (Health and Wellbeing Outlet). A company that is the first local delivery and courier service company in Sierra Leone which started with a workforce of 3 employees and now has over 30 permanent employees, fleet of delivery vans, Haulage truck, tricycles, and motorbikes and a full fledge Clearing and Forwarding , Logistics and Supply Chain company . She is also the proprietress of a bread bakery business, Bathurst Bakery offering to the residents of Freetown daily bread supply with the aim of launching into a full gourmet Bread Line. Fatima is passionate about hard work, empowerment, career development, logistics and supply chain management and has followed through on her ambition to become a job creator, creatively and dependably supporting youths and growing her businesses with aim of expanding across the continent in the future. She also the only woman serving  currently as the Secretary General of The Association of Clearing and Forwarding Agencies Sierra Leone (ACFA) and the national representive for Sierra Leone in the Common Wealth Alliance for young entrepreneurs Africa (CAYE- Africa).

Alaba Ayinuola

founder - Business Africa Online

Alaba Ayinuola is a business builder and brand marketing advisor who spend his most productive time promoting African businesses and founders making impact leveraging global platforms. He consults for Africa-focused investors on impact investing and connects them with founders. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) consultant advocate helping African brands and entrepreneurs building brands with purpose integrate and achieve purpose, profit and impact. Alaba founded Business Africa Online, your guide to Africa’s business and social impact ecosystems focused on retelling the African stories; successes and challenges of entrepreneurs. A digital platform that connects African Diaspora with the continent. He currently serves as a Mentor, Judge and Ambassador for various tech, non-tech innovation competitions, organisations in and out of Africa including The Tony Elumelu Foundation, Technovation, Meaningful Business 100, etc. Alaba is also the Founder at SterlingReach, a digital and integrated marketing communication company that initiates and launches result-driven campaigns. Industry Consulting Experience includes; FinTech | Oil & Gas | Aviation | Tourism | Real Estate | eHealth | Logistics | EdTech | AgTech | Non-Profit

Ahmad el Nashar

Managing Director of Fasila Ventures

hmad el Nashar is the Managing Director of Fasila Ventures, a UK venture building firm that specialises in supporting values driven startups and early stage ventures in growing and scaling sustainably. He is a specialist in many management areas and industrial sectors and is particularly interested in venture building and leadership development. Ahmad spent the first half of his 20+ years of professional life working for some of the biggest corporations in the world including Maersk, Nokia, Wilhelmsen Group to name a few. He then moved on to consulting & coaching upon realising that helping companies and leaders reimagining the way they
organise and operate is where his true calling really is. He led $M organisation transformation assignments in government, Non profit and private sectors in a diverse range of industries, including Aerospace, Maritime, Telecom, Pharma, IT, oil & gas, and Retail services throughout Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and South America. He has delivered thousands of hours in coaching and leadership development programs for senior executives in fortune 100 companies. Some of his recent clients
include Pepsico, Chanel, Intercorp, The Red Cross, L’Oréal and Pfizer. Ahmad co-founded and led multiple 6-digit revenue generating organisations including three regional based consulting companies in the Middle East and Europe, a regional school operation, a Middle East based think tank, and a number of local branches for leading international organisations. Ahmad’s personal passion is to work with organisations and their people to clarify their purpose, vision and values. He enjoys working with individuals so that they can realise their full potential. He is a specialist in many areas but is particularly passionate about building ventures, talent development, and leadership development.

Nio Liyanage

Founder and Managing Director Startupright

Formerly at Apple with deep experience in Venture Capital and Management Consulting, Nio specialises in growing technology startups through hands-on involvement in strategy, growth, market expansion and capital-raising. He personally holds equity in 10+ ventures, has advised 200+ startups, built 15+ accelerator programs, conducted 150+ workshops, and has guided dozens of companies to profitability, scale and market dominance

Claudia Makadristo

Regional Manager for Africa at Seedstars

Claudia Makadristo is the Regional Manager for Africa at Seedstars, the biggest tech entrepreneurship education company and impact investment firm focused on emerging markets with presence in over 90+ countries globally and 30 in Africa. Her activities with Seedstars bring her to over 25+ Sub Saharan African countries every year, where she works with some of the biggest corporates and public partners to invest in and support entrepreneurs locally and across the world through a variety of competition, acceleration, incubation, education and investment initiatives. Claudia has analysed over 2000+ digital entrepreneurs across the continent and mentored over 300+ tech founders. In addition, Claudia is an active board member of the Seedspaces in Africa (Tanzania, South Africa, Nigeria, and Côte d’Ivoire) and is part of the diversity and inclusion committee, where she mostly focuses on designing inclusive entrepreneurship training programs and gender-lens investment insights and activities for the wider entrepreneurial ecosystem of Africa. Claudia holds a degree in International Business (BBA) and her thesis on transforming the city of Lisbon after the 2008 financial crisis into a tech hub received the highest praise. 

Weyinmi Eribo

Entrepreneur and founder of Wevvo Nigeria

Weyinmi Eribo is a trained geologist with Quality health safety and environment (QHSE) expertise, an enterprise development consultant, and a gender advisor. She has several years of experience across the oil and gas industry, health and safety, not-for-profit management, and the entrepreneurial ecosystem.


She is a StartingBloc social innovation fellow and Regional Chair, West Africa Alumni, a World Bank Scholar and a Cherie Blair Foundation Mentee Alumni. She is a member of the Ministerial Focal group for the establishment of the National Youth Investment Fund and a contributor for BusinessDay Weekender where she writes on issues bordering gender inclusiveness. She is an entrepreneur and founder of Wevvo Nigeria, a resource and community-based platform that supports single female breadwinners