The top finalists in the 2021 AWIEF Awards, to celebrate women business leaders and entrepreneurs in Africa, have been revealed. Women entrepreneurs across multiple industries in Africa will be acknowledged for their leadership and innovation.
Twenty-four women founders and entrepreneurs were selected by an independent panel of judges as top finalists for the 2021 AWIEF Awards across 8 different categories. The 24 finalists represent women-owned businesses operating in 11 African countries: Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
The AWIEF Awards winners will be announced on 3 December 2021 following on from the 2021 AWIEF Conference. The 7th edition of the annual AWIEF Conference, under the theme ‘Advancing inclusive, resilient and sustainable growth in a post-Covid-19 African economy’ will be hosted as a hybrid (virtual and in-person) event from 2-3 December 2021.
“AWIEF remains steadfast in its efforts to promote and support women entrepreneurship development and innovation in Africa. With the AWIEF Awards, we identify and shine the spotlight on inspirational women entrepreneurs and innovators, driving growth for Africa,” said Irene Ochem, AWIEF founder and chief executive officer.
“It was an absolute delight to judge the AWIEF Awards once again this year. The standard and quality of the nominations and businesses continue to be high. The judging panel had a hard time choosing the top finalists from the numerous inspirational and outstanding women entrepreneurs who, through their businesses, are creating opportunities and positively impacting lives and communities,” commented Birgitta Cederstrom, Frost & Sullivan's business development director for the Middle East and Africa.
The finalists for the 2021 AWIEF Awards are (names in alphabetical order):
Young Entrepreneur Award
- Phyllis Addo, co-director of Rhema Engineering Solutions (Ghana)
- Tao Boyle, cofounder and COO of FoondaMate (South Africa)
- Alexandria Procter, cofounder and CEO of DigsConnect.com (South Africa)
Tech Entrepreneur Award
- Ivy Barley, cofounder of Developers in Vogue Foundation (Ghana)
- Evelyn Kaiingu, CEO of Lupiya (Zambia)
- Kathryn Malherbe, CEO of Medsol AI Solutions (South Africa)
Social Entrepreneur Award
- Gudula Naiga Basaza, managing director of Gudie Leisure Farm (Uganda)
- Zandile Mkhwanazi and Tinyiko Simbine, cofounders of GirlCode (South Africa)
- Angela Juliana Odero, managing director of Rio Fish Ltd (Kenya)
Agri Entrepreneur Award
- Hadia M. Gondji, founder and managing director of Hadiya Seed Production and Agro Industry Plc (Ethiopia)
- Jo-andra Cloete Greegory, CEO of Our Poultry Place (South Africa)
- Fortunatha Mmari, cofounder and managing director of AFCO Investment Co. Ltd (Tanzania)
Creative Industry Award
- Cynthia Asije, creative director at The Adirelounge (Nigeria)
- Nadia Takyiwaa-Mensah, founder and CEO of Sai Wine Café (Ghana)
- Susan Wanjiru, founder and creative lead at Lockhem Kids Entertainment (Kenya)
Energy Entrepreneur Award
- Ifeoma Malo, CEO of Clean Technology Hub (Nigeria)
- Tumi Mphahlele, founder and director of Amperion Energy (South Africa)
- Josephine Takundwa, CEO of Earthlink Technologies (Zimbabwe)
- Jackie Bomboma, counder and CEO of Young Strong Mothers Foundation (Tanzania)
- Djénéba Gory, cofounder and COO of Suadela (Mali)
- Gehad Hamdy, founder and manager of Speak Up (Egypt)
Lifetime Achievement Award
- Margaret Hirsch, cofounder and executive director of Hirsch's Homestores (South Africa)
- Tabitha Karanja, founder and CEO of Keroche Breweries (Kenya)
- Lucia Quachey, founder and president of Ghana Association of Women Entrepreneurs (Ghana)