Tunde Onakoya Emerges Business Insider Social Entrepreneur of the Year

April 13, 2022
Tunde Onakoya Chess in Slums Africa initiative

By Adedapo Adesanya

The convener of the Chess in Slums Africa initiative, Mr Tunde Onakoya, has emerged as the winner of the Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award organised by Business Insider Africa.

The inaugural Business Insider Africa Awards recognised outstanding business leaders across Sub-Saharan Africa who have been instrumental to the growth and advancement of the region’s economic landscape.

There were 55 nominees, including some of the continent’s top business leaders, achievers, and innovators across various industries and sectors who have made noteworthy contributions to their various communities through charitable works and leadership roles.

After two weeks of intensive voting from people around Africa and beyond, 11 outstanding leaders emerged winners across each of the award categories, the organisers noted.

The recognition for Mr Onakoya comes at a time when he is getting recognition for his works to take children off the streets and provide them with a platform through chess among others.

“Although the NGO is barely two years old, its impacts are already being felt, even as leading global media companies such as Reuters and DW have taken note,” the organisers noted.

Embattled Flutterwave CEO, Mr Olugbenga Agboola, currently embroiled in a scandal revolving around unfair practices with the unicorn, emerged the winner of the Tech Investor of the Year Award.

Besides his current job at Flutterwave, he is also a notable investor in the African startup space. He recently partnered with Norrsken House to launch a $200 million fund to support growth-stage African startups.

Novelist, Ms Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie won the Creative Leader of the Year Award.

Business Insider Africa remarked that she is “one of the finest writers the world has seen in a long time, Adichie has written many best-selling and award-winning novels. Be it in Half of a Yellow Sun or Americannah; her stories are known to tackle societal issues, albeit in a refreshingly entertaining literary manner.”

Other winners were Ms Olajumoke Kujero who emerged winner of the Marketing Professional of the Year Award. She is the Head of Marketing at Jumia Nigeria, a role she has held since March 2020. Prior to working at Jumia, she worked as the Head of Marketing at Wakanow.

Mr Andrew Takyi-Appiah won the Fintech Leader of the Year Award. He is the co-founder and Managing Director of Zeepay, a Ghanaian fintech startup established in 2016. Prior to that time, he worked at UT Bank Ghana as a General Manager. He has held several other high profile positions in top firms, including PwC Ghana, PwC UK, Ecobank Transnational Incorporated and GTBank.

Mr Onyeka Akumah was awarded the winner of the Internet Entrepreneur of the Year Award. He is a Nigerian serial entrepreneur and the Co-Founder/CEO of Treepz – one of Africa’s largest shared mobility companies.

“Over the years, Onyeka has partnered with other entrepreneurs to launch several businesses, including Farmcrowdy – Nigeria’s first digital agriculture platform. Today, he sits on the board of leading tech startups across Africa and North America while constantly seeking ways to impact African youths through media and technology,” his winning profile reads.

Former Special Assistant to President Goodluck Johnson, Mr Reno Omokri was conferred as the winner of the Business Influencer of the Year Award. The UK-trained Nigerian lawyer was noted as a very active and influential voice across social media platforms, especially Twitter, where he discusses various topics, from career tips to business and the economy.

Mrs Tara Fela-Durotoye was crowned the winner of the Entrepreneurship Lifetime Achievement Award.

“Mrs Durotoye is a Nigerian beauty entrepreneur and the Founder/Chief Executive Officer of House of Tara International. She built the company from scratch into one of Africa’s most notable beauty brands. And in return, she has been recognised for her audacious entrepreneurial spirit,” her profile read.

Mrs Eunice Ajim was regaled as the winner of the Tech Serial Entrepreneur of the Year Award. She is Founding Partner at Ajim Capital, an early-stage fund targeting African startups. Prior to starting the company, she worked at Apple as a product consultant and held various positions at Texas-based OpenTeams.

Mr Gregory Rockson emerged as the winner of the Young CEO of the Year Award. The Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of mPharma, an Africa-focused health tech startup started the company in 2013 and has served as its CEO since then.

The organisers remarked that, “Under his leadership, mPharma has raised about $88.2 million from investors and expanded operations to Nigeria, Zambia, Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Gabon, Rwanda, Malawi and Ethiopia. Besides his work at mPharma, Gregory Rockson is also the Executive Chairman at Halsons Limited. The Ghanaian national is a World Economic Forum Global Shaper. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Westminster College.”

Adedapo Adesanya

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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