40 Africans Under 40 – Making It In Africa

Do you know the 40 Africans under 40? Africa has made tremendous progress across all spheres and is now considered a hub of great talent, which is making a significant contribution to prospering the continent’s economic and social progress. Young Africans are smart people who’ve taken it upon themselves to use their various talents and fields of expertise to make the continent a better place.

At Africa.com, we recognize these efforts from young people who are tirelessly working to make Africa a better place to live. In light of this, we’ve identified the Top 40 Africans under 40 extraordinary men and women who are transforming the future of Africa. This list includes people who are making amazing contributions in their respective fields of expertise.

#1 Mmusi Maimane

Mmusi Maimane is one of the 40 Africans under 40 young Africans. She is the leader of South Africa’s opposition party, Democratic Alliance. At a young age, Maimane has risen through his political career to be South Africa’s opposition leader, a position he has held since May 2015. He leads the opposition is South Africa’s National Assembly and is a beacon of hope for many aspiring young African politicians. Maimane’s rise to fame began in 2011, when he was elected to contest for Johannesburg Mayor on a Democratic Alliance ticket, but he didn’t make it.

However, he managed to substantially popularize the party and gained more followers. He also served as leader of opposition on the Johannesburg City Council before taking his political career to the next level. Aside from politics, he’s a pastor with a Master’s Degree in Theology, and has a second Master’s Degree in Public Administration.

#2 Aarti Takoordeen

Image Credit: Pulse NG

Aarti Takoordeen is the CFO and Executive Director of Africa’s leading stock exchange, Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). Takoordeen is a Chartered Accountant who, at the time of her appointment, was the youngest CFO of a firm listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Her excellence in leadership and professional acumen has raised her profile as a highly successful young corporate executive. In 2014, she was named Young CFO of the Year after winning the prestigious CFO South Africa Award.

Recently, the World Economic Forum selected Aarti as a Young Global Leader. She is always excited about continuously making a positive impact in Africa’s business and finance sector thus making her among the top 40 Africans under 40. Takoordeen has previously worked with global brands such as Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Johnson Controls International.

#3 James Mworia

Image Credit: Capital FM

Kenyan, James Mworia is the Chief Executive Officer of Centum Investments, the largest private capital firm in Eastern Africa. Mworia began his career in Centum in 2001 as a filing clerk and steadily rose through the ranks to become the top executive of the company. In 2008, when he was just 30 years old, he was appointed as the CEO and MD of Centum Investment, a position he continues to hold to this day.

During his tenure at the helm, Centum has grown its asset base from $69 million to approximately $350 million. In addition, Mworia also holds high profile positions such as Sidian Bank Board of Directors Chairman and Nairobi Stock Exchange Board Member.

#4 Zanele Diniso

Image Credit: Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber

Zanele Diniso is a perfect example of a young entrepreneur who has played a critical role in helping the less fortunate in society. She is the owner of Periwinkle Home Executive and Co-founder of Ndingumntwana Adopt a Learning Child Programme that is tasked with empowering the less fortunate. In addition, Diniso is a mentor and public speaker from Port Elizabeth in South Africa.

Born to a domestic worker and bus driver, Diniso learnt the value of hard work and has always strived to be the best. Her company, Periwinkle Home Executive, identifies poor women from rural backgrounds and offers them training to work as home executives. She was among the few entrepreneurs to be trained on Entrepreneurship by the United Nations.

#5 Chido Govera

Image Credit: ABC Net

Chido Govera is a successful Zimbabwean farmer, campaigner, and educator who has changed lives of millions of Africans through mushroom farming. Interestingly, her name, Chido, means ‘passion.’ which truly reflects in her own foundation, The Future of Hope. Using her foundation, she has successfully trained 1,000 people on mushroom farming in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, and Cameroon.

Her efforts have also benefitted communities beyond Africa, such as India, Australia Aboriginals, Europe, and the United States. Growing up as orphan, she had to fend for herself when she was only 7, and later was abused by a close family member when she was 8. Because of her devastating experience, she promised to protect the rights of all orphans when she grew up. She has been into mushroom farming since she was 11.

#6 Lois Auta

Image Credit: Punch NG

Lois Auta has been widely praised for her role in positively impacting the disabled community. She is the Founder and Executive Director of Cedar Seed Foundation Nigeria, a non-profit organization formed to highlight the issues of disabled persons in Nigeria, especially women, girls, and children. Having been an orphan and affected by polio at the age of 2, Lois had to endure several challenges that inspired her to want to make a difference and ensure the voices of disabled people were heard.

Thanks to her advocacy, many disabled people have been employed and are now treated equally in matters of national development. Auta is a sports athlete and the President of FCT Disabled Sports Club in Abuja, and Founder of Women on Wheels Multipurpose Cooperative Society, among other key positions that she holds. In recognition of her work, she has received numerous awards, including in 2014 when she was honored with the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders award, an initiative by Former US President, Barack Obama.

#7 Mouhamed Moustapha Fall

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung

Mouhamed Moustapha Fall’s excellence in mathematics is admired by many in Africa. He is currently working at the African Institute of Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) in Senegal as the Endowed Chair in Mathematics and its applications. AIMS is funded by the Alexander Von Humboldt Foundation, and Fall focuses on Partial Differential Equations and Differential Geometry. On a continent where mathematics is considered a difficult subject, he managed to excel in computations and mathematics throughout his schooling to obtain a PhD.

At his young age, he has already published 30 research papers in the area of International Mathematics and Physics Journals. Fall is among the few Africans who review international mathematics journals. In addition, he is a renowned speaker at global mathematics conferences and sits on several global scientific boards.

#8 William Elong

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Business in Cameroon

William Elong is a perfect example of how young people are driving the innovation that is changing Africa. He is the founder of Will & Brothers and graduated with a degree at the tender age of 18. Five years later, Elong began an innovation that has played a major role in enhancing security. Using his company, Elong has come up with an IT innovation called ‘Drone Africa,’ whose aim is to increase the use of civil drones and defense tools in Cameroon to help fight terrorism.

In addition, the drones are used for mapping, media coverage, and tourism, as well as agriculture. He has embarked on a mission to raise money to become the pioneered African manufacturer of quadcopter-type drones featuring high-definition cameras.

#9 Jamilla Abass

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Vimeo

Jamilla Abass is credited for her role in helping small Kenyan farmers to harness technology. At the age of 26, Abass started her social enterprise, M-Farm, which assists small farmers in accessing vital information about markets for their products. Through her work, she has assisted over 100,000 farmers in collectively accessing the market and having better product bargaining power.

Using their mobile phones, farmers can simply make enquires via sms and get access to real-time price information relevant to their specific areas of residence. The ability of farmers to leverage on mobile technology has greatly transformed how farmers do business, enabling them to earn money and reduce poverty.

#10 Faten Kallel

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit : Twitter

Faten Kallel is a young Tunisian politician who is currently serving as the Secretary of State, Ministry of Youths and Sports. As a young woman, her success in Tunisian politics is a great inspiration for young African women who wish to venture into politics. Kallel, who is a member of Afek Tounes Political Party, is a management consultant by profession, having worked for numerous consulting firms before joining government.

In 2017, she was named among the Young Global Leaders at the World Economic Forum. Her role in organization and administrative reforms has earned her the position of a young vibrant leader who is shaping African politics.

#11 Billy Mawasha

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Twitter

Billy Mawasha is the managing Director of Richard Bay Minerals and is a dynamic and people-focused business personality, who has strong commercial, operational, technical, and stakeholder engagement skills that add useful value to every business he leads. Mawasha is a respected South African corporate leader and is seen to be among young emerging African business leaders who has lead various key initiatives, such as enhancing workplace safety and engaging with local communities.

He is passionate about sustainable mining, development, and education. Billy has worked for various topnotch corporate entities, and was recently recognized as a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum. In 2016, he was named by Financial Mail, a leading South African publication, as the most distinguished leader under 40.

#12 Edwin Bruno Shayo

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Blackintheworld

Edwin Bruno Shayo is a famous Tanzanian entrepreneur, Founder and CEO of Smart Codes Limited. He is credited for developing Tanzania’s most successful App, M-Paper, which is a platform responsible for distributing newspapers and books straight to readers via their smartphones. His innovation emerged top at the AppsAfrica Awards as the Best Innovation and Education Application in Africa.

Shayo’s company, Smart codes Limited, is also well-known for helping other companies successfully manage their digital marketing strategies. At the Tanzania Leadership Awards in 2015, Shayo emerged the winner of Young Achiever of the Year Award and, in 2016, was listed on Forbes Africa’s 30 under 30 list.

#13 Phyllis Wakiaga

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Kenya Association of Manufacturers

Phyllis Wakiaga is a top young, Kenyan corporate executive who is currently the CEO of Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM). She has also been the Kenyan representative for the UN Global Compact since 2015. Kenya Association of Manufacturers is an organization that represents manufacturers, and its main aim is to advocate for a good business environment where local industries can effectively operate.

Phyllis is committed to see a favorable environment that allows the manufacturing industry to create wealth and employ more citizens. Her desire to see positive changes in the corporate industry has earned her respect as she goes above the call of duty to ensure she meets her objectives.

#14 Thato Kgatlhanye

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Face2Face Africa

Thato Kgatlhanye is a South African social entrepreneur whose venture, Rethaka Trading, has changed the lives of many African children. Her company focuses on green innovative solutions, and she is the brains behind Repurpose Schoolbags. These bags have made life easier for children living in rural areas in South Africa that don’t have electricity.

The Repurpose Schoolbags uses 100% recycled and environmentally friendly bags that integrates solar technology, enabling the bag to charge during the day and be used to provide light to kids to allow them to study and do their homework at night.  These bags have changed the lives of school children who, now, have an equal opportunity to study just like urban children.

#15 Allegro Dinkwanyane

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Twitter

Allegro Dinkwanyane is poised to become one of South Africa’s most successful young media and public relations moguls. She is the founder of Orgella Media, a fully black-owned public relations firm that she started in 2011 when she was only 21 years old. Today, her company represents popular names in South Africa’s entertainment industry such as Donald Moatshe, Siya Mdlalose, and Paledi Segapo.

Orgella Media also has corporate clients such as Africa Fashion Week Nigeria and Avon South Africa, among others.  From humble beginnings as an entertainment blog, Allegro’s company has expanded its portfolio and how deals with brand management, especially social media and public relations campaigns.

#16 Alloysius Attah

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Tech in Ghana Conference

Alloysius Attah is the CEO and Co-founder of Farmerline, a Ghanaian organization that is assisting small-scale farmers to become successful entrepreneurs by enabling them access to information and resources to help them boost their productivity. When he was only 5 years old, his parents divorced, so he started living with his aunt, who was a peasant farmer in rural Ghana.

This experience gave Alloysius the inspiration to come up with a project that would help small-scale farmers and all those who supported him during his childhood. Today, Farmerline is steadfast in positively impacting the lives of farmers by supporting them to be successful in their activities.

#17 Naisula Lesuuda

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Women Aspirants Kenya Organization

Naisula Lesuuda is a Kenyan politician and a current Member of Parliament of Samburu West. Lesuuda is a journalist by profession and became popular when she was a News Anchor on Kenya’s state broadcaster, KBC. Coming from a marginalized region in Northern Kenya, she later resigned from her job to form the Naisula Lesuuda Peace Foundation, which promotes girl child education and campaigns against child marriage and female genital mutilation.

She is also the founding member of Laikipia Peace Caravan and has played a key role in empowering the local community. In 2013, Lesuuda was nominated a senator, becoming the youngest at the time in the Kenyan Senate. She’s also the youngest Kenyan woman to win the prestigious Presidential Order of the Grand Warrior Award.

#18 Simbarashe Mhuriro

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Africa Youth Awards

Zimbabwean Simbarashe Mhuriro is the founder and managing director of Oxygen Africa, which is an investment advisory firm focusing on renewable energy development. Under his leadership, Oxygen Africa is currently spearheading the development of commercial and industrial rooftop solar projects in conjunction with a number of partners such as Old Mutual Property Zimbabwe and Minerva Risk Advisors.

With 12 years of experience in business management, Mhuriro has pioneered a set of solar PV projects that he hopes will operate commercially. Because of his role, he was named one of the 2017 honourees in the Business and Entrepreneurship Category by the Most Influential People of African Descent (MIPAD) Under 40. In 2016, Forbes Magazine named him among Africa’s 30 Most Promising and Inspiring Young Entrepreneurs. Mhuriro was also previously recognized amongst the 100 Most Influential Young Africans of the Year at the Africa Youth Awards.

#19 Ntombenhle Khathwane

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Destiny Magazine

Swaziland-born Ntombenhle Khathwane is celebrated for her unique South Africa-based company, AfroBotanics, where she is the founder. Her company deals with premium hair care products made from African botanical oils and other natural products to ensure healthy hair and limit hair damage. She focuses on ensuring natural African hair is kept in good condition, and her inspiration came when she was unable to find the appropriate high-quality local hair products.

Her entrepreneurship efforts have made her to be honored in the Business and Entrepreneurship Category as one of the 100 Most Influential People of African Descent. Khathwane represents young Africans who are creative and are using entrepreneurship to provide real solutions to problems.

#20 Samuel Malinga

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: RTP Géneros

Samuel Malinga, an agricultural engineer, is the Founder and Managing Director of Sanitation Africa, a Ugandan social enterprise that is responsible for uplifting sanitation standards in remote communities in Uganda. Malinga grew up in the Naguru slums and witnessed, firsthand, how poor sanitation and improper waste management negatively affected his neighborhood. Since then, he took it upon himself to find a solution of how he could prevent child deaths and other consequences of poor sanitation.

With a majority of Ugandans staying in highly dense and unplanned settlements, Sanitation Africa has developed a sanitation system that starts from building low-cost hygienic toilets to proper recycling of water into agriculture manure and cooking briquette. To date, Sanitation Africa has constructed over 360 toilets, directly impacting over 1,000 remote and inaccessible households across Uganda. At the 2015 Future Africa Awards, he won the Tony Elumelu Prize for Business.

#21 Darshan Chandaria

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Business Daily

At a young age, Darshan Chandaria is amongst Africa’s most respected corporate leaders. He is the CEO and Director of Chandaria Industries and has quickly acquired the reputation of being an inspirational leader and role model, especially to the young people. Darshan has been instrumental in pioneering major transformations at Chandaria Group, one of Kenya’s largest owned businesses into a global brand. His outstanding corporate achievements have seen him recognized in various circles. He is a member of Young Presidents Organization and African Leadership Network. Chandaria is a renowned young philanthropist who is actively involved in supporting various community projects across Kenya.

#22 Vanessa Zommi

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: ThisIsAfrica

Vanessa Zommi’s health social enterprise, Emerald Moringa Tea, is helping to fight the spread of diabetes in Cameroon. After her own mother was diagnosed with diabetes, Zommi was curious to find out if there were any alternative treatments that could cure her mother. After extensive research, she discovered the moringa oleifera tree, which has medicinal value and grew in Cameroon.

Zommi later realized moringa leaves worked incredibly well to lower blood sugar levels. With this discovery, she worked closely with moringa farmers to acquire moringa leaves and process them into tea bags – Moringa Tea. With her innovation, she found a unique way of using tea to help cure Cameroonians suffering from diabetes. Because of her well-appreciated efforts, Zommi has been featured on CNN, Forbes, Media 256, and ThisisAfrica. She was also nominated for the Cameroonian Career Women Awards.

#23 Fahad Awadh

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Forbes

Fahad Awadh is a Tanzanian entrepreneur and Co-founder of YYTZ Agro-Processing, which is changing the way cashew nuts are processed in Tanzania. After coming back from Canada, where he used to live, Awadh set up a cashew nut processing facility in Tanzania with the aim of bringing international standards to Tanzanian cashew nuts.

Tanzania is one of the best and largest producers of cashew nuts in Africa, so Awadh knew his venture would boost income to farmers and create numerous employment opportunities. He started the business with $550,000 capital that he raised from the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund for Investment. YYTZ has a major facility in Zanzibar, with plans to set up another plant in Mtwara. Through his venture, farmers are now part of the value chain, which has changed their lives and those of their communities.

#24 Dr.Yohans Wodaje Emiru

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Youtube

Yohans Wodaje Emiru is an Ethiopian entrepreneur, CEO and Founder of Telemed Medical Services, a firm whose mission is to enable Ethiopians access to fast, reliable, immediate and affordable healthcare services. Dr. Yohans has extensive experience in adult, maternal, and children’s health. HelloDoctor is Telemed’s flagship product that allows people to call from anywhere, anytime in search of instant healthcare services.

People from across the country use their phone to call a centralized call center where they can access numerous services such as a medical consultation, ambulance dispatch or home-care booking. The leveraging of technology to improve Ethiopia’s healthcare infrastructure has earned Emiru a lot of respect and recognition. His company also has technology that allows for remote monitoring of patients with chronic conditions such as HIV and TB via mobile phones.

#25 Linda Ikeji

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Information Nigeria

Linda Ikeji is a Nigerian entrepreneur and blogger famous for her blog, lindaikejisblog.com, which is one of Africa’s most-visited and respected lifestyle, entertainment, and fashion blogs. Her blog covers many topics cutting across various niches, and her story of success in online blogging has made her to be admired by many people.

Linda’s blogging career has made her an immensely wealthy Nigerian celebrity, and she is an inspiration to young Africans looking to make a career and living via various digital media platforms. She is among the top online entrepreneurs in Africa and highest paid Nigerian blogger, who has bypassed traditional media to command a great online following. Ikeji has been featured in several platforms including BBC and CNN.

#26 Eric Kinoti

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Konnect Africa

Eric Kinoti is a budding Kenyan entrepreneur and philanthropist who,at a young age, has managed to acquire a multi-million dollar business empire that spans over six countries. Kinoti is the founder of Shade Systems East Africa Limited, Bag Base Kenya, Alma Tents Limited and Safi Sana Home Services Limited. He also sits on the boards of many prominent East African companies, and has won numerous regional and global awards.

Before venturing into the corporate world, Eric was once a car washer, hawker, and a porter. In 2014, Forbes named him among the 30 Most Promising Young Entrepreneurs in Africa. Kinoti is an inspiration to many, aspiring young entrepreneurs across the continent.

#27 Seun Osewa

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: How Nigeria

Seun Osewa is a Nigerian internet mogul and Founder of Nairaland, a platform he launched in 2005. Osewa has made it big with his internet forum, projected by Forbes to be the largest online African forum. Nairaland has a huge following both in Africa and around the world, competing in the same league with top global platforms such as Facebook, Google, and Wikipedia, among others.

Ranking among the top 1,000 most viewed sites in the world, Nairaland attracts over 1 million views each day, which has made Osewa a successful African internet sensation. In 2015, he was listed among the Top 10 Most Influential Nigerian Online Entrepreneurs by T.I.N. Magazine.

#28 Teta Isibo

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Lionesses of Africa

Teta Isibo is a young and successful Rwandan entrepreneur and the Founder of Inzuki Designs, a unique jewelry, accessory, and interior décor brand. Isibo was working as an Urban Planner in Kigali, but quit her job to pursue her passion for art. Her creations are all unique and hand-made using locally available materials and craft skills. She works closely with many local women’s cooperatives who come up with quality and unique pieces.

Despite having no fashion nor and arts background, her passion and determination to succeed has seen her growing her brand beyond Rwanda. Aside from having a boutique in Kigali, Isibo’s work has begun to attract international markets – Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America. Teta Isibo was recognized by Forbes 2017 among 30 Promising Young Entrepreneurs in Africa.

#29 Maite Makgoba

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Konnect Africa

Maite Makgoba is a young South African entrepreneur and Founder of Momppy Mpoppy, whose creativity has enabled her to run an innovative creation. Appreciating the beauty of African women, Makgoba decided to make African dolls after realizing there were no African-inspired dolls on the market. Her quest to please young girls in a unique way made her create a product that African girls could easily relate to.

Momppy Mpoppy creates beautiful dolls with African skin, hair, and features to help people realize just how beautiful African girls are. In addition, Makgoba has plans to create children’s storybooks and an animated cartoon series. Using her innovation, Makgoba has been at the forefront of creating unique African-inspired fashion dolls.

#30 Jazeera Suwani

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Twitter

Jazeera Suwani is a Kenyan entrepreneur and Founder of Say It With Chocolate, a unique enterprise that provides handmade chocolates that cater to vegan or lactose intolerant people. Suwani realized even though many people eat chocolate, nobody had ever thought of having chocolate that caters to specific dietary regimens. She got inspired to start her business because she, herself, is lactose intolerant, and eating chocolate used to upset her stomach.

She is committed to making organic chocolate products and her chocolate contains quality cocoa, cocoa butter, as well as unrefined sugar. Jazeera’s innovative idea and quest to ensure people with special dietary needs to enjoy their favorite chocolate bar has made her enterprise popular.

#31 Tumi Phake

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Twitter

Tumi Phake is a South African entrepreneur, owner and Founder of Zenzele Fitness Group. Before starting Zenzele Fitness, Phake, who is a former banker, worked as a structured lending specialist at Rand Merchant Bank, but his eyes were set on the fitness industry. Phake is keen on changing trends by becoming the first black dominant fitness player, not only in South Africa, but Africa in general.

His mission is to build a solid fitness empire that will one day be listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Phake is keen on going beyond gym services and uses his company to positively impact the lives of African society. Currently, he owns 10 gyms across Johannesburg, Pretoria, and Limpopo, with plans to open another gym in Cape Town.

#32 Nnaemeka Ikegwuonu

40 Africans Under 40
Image Source: Youtube

Nnaemeka Ikegwuonu is a Nigerian social entrepreneur who owns Smallholders Foundation, which was started with the aim of giving small-scale farmers access to agricultural best practices and advice through a community radio station, Smallholders Farmers Rural Radio. He started the radio station in 2003 when he was just 21 years old, and using the media platform, he has managed to improve the lives of smallholder farmers who’ve benefitted a great deal from the platform.

His idea of empowering farmers using interactive radio has enabled Nigerian small-scale farmers to share knowledge that can improve agricultural activity. As a vegetable farmer himself, Ikegwuonu came up with ColdHubs – a walk-in solar-powered cold-room for storing perishable vegetable produce to reduce damage.

#33 Lucia Bakulumpagi Wamala

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: How We Made It In Africa

Lucia Bakulumpagi-Wamala is a Ugandan entrepreneur, CEO and Founder of Bakulu Power, which is a Ugandan renewable energy company. Bakulu Power is currently developing a biomass production plant in a Western Uganda refugee camp and setting up 3 solar mini-grids on Lake Victoria Islands. After she came back from Canada, where she also grew up, Lucia visited her Gayaza hometown in Central Uganda and realized the huge pile of garbage on the streets.

Since she wasn’t used to seeing this in Canada, she thought of how she could innovate an idea that would transform garbage into productive use. This led to the birth of Bakulu Power. Her company designs, installs, and operates renewable energy systems for both commercial and residential clients.

#34 Seif Abou Zeid

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: RISE Egypt

Seif Abou Zeid is an Egyptian social and policy entrepreneur whose work focuses on education and its relationship to governance. Zeid is the CEO of Tahrir Academy, an innovative and blended platform that facilitates unique and mind-stimulating learning experiences for over 160,000 registered Egyptian and Arab learners.

He is also the founder of the Nabadat Foundation, a non-profit organization that fights poverty, improves education, and increases political and human rights awareness by utilizing technology and the internet. Abou Zeid is also the co-founder of Agency and Development, an initiative whose aim is to train young people between the ages of 15 and 35 years. He recently appeared on the 100 Under 40: The World’s Most Influential Young Arabs.

#35 Daniel Ndambuki

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Youth Village Kenya

Popularly known as “Churchill,” this Kenyan comedian and famous radio presenter is feted for his great contribution that has impacted positively on the life of many Kenyans. Through his popular TV comedy show “Churchill Live,” Ndambuki has transformed the comedy industry in Kenya, having identified raw talent from young people across the country and mentored them to become top comedians. His love to see young people succeed and make it in the comedy industry has earned him a lot of praise locally, regionally, and globally. Ndambuki is among Kenya’s pioneer comedians and has won numerous awards to recognize his incredible efforts. He has proved to society that comedy is like any other career and it pays well.

#36 Yasmin Helal

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Amazons Watch Magazine

Yasmin Helal is a young Egyptian entrepreneur and the founder of Educate Me, a platform aimed at helping underprivileged children take charge of their own learning. Unlike the public school system that dwells on memorization and offering standardized tests, Educate Me is based on a learner-focused approach that allows children to choose what they want to learn and, thereafter, be accorded the necessary support to excel.

Educate Me has enabled children to enjoy the learning process more and be better prepared for the challenges ahead. Yasmin’s innovation has promoted positive changes in Egypt, allowing students to be ushered into an equitable and tolerant society. Because of her efforts, Helal appeared among The World’s Most Influential Young Arabs: Top 100 Under 40.

#37 Bright Owusu-Amofah

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Twitter

Bright Owusu-Amofah is the CEO of Appolonia City, a top real estate firm in Ghana. He has a background in finance and his extensive experience in real estate financing, investment banking, and private equity has earned him respect as a young, influential, and accomplished corporate executive in Ghana. Before his appointment as CEO, Owusu-Amofah was Rendevour’s chief finance officer (CFO).

Owusu-Amofah leads a team that is keen on transforming Accra and Ghana with modern real estate mixed-use developments. He is an alumnus of Harvard Business School‘s Real Estate Management Program. Because of his commitment to professional excellence and real estate industry growth, Owusu-Amofah was named the winner in the Real Estate and Development Category at the 2017 Ghana 40 Under 40 Awards.

#38 Angela Ndambuki

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Business Today

Angela Ndambuki is a well-known Kenyan music personality whose hit song “Mateso,” sung by the all-girl trio ‘Tatuu,’ hit the airwaves some years back. Today, she is the CEO of Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Angela is a young CEO whose aim is to ensure there is a favorable climate for doing business in Kenya and her role puts her at the center of working closely with other stakeholders to encourage international investments.

She has also been on the forefront fighting for the rights of creative artists as the CEO of Performers Rights Society of Kenya (Prisk). Her background in Intellectual Property Law put her in a good position to champion for the rights of the creative industry.

#39 Jawad Nabulsi

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Middle East Institute

Jawad Nabulsi is an Egyptian social entrepreneur and the founder of the Nebny Foundation, a non-government organization that seeks to improve the lives of Egyptian communities. Nabulsi lost one of his eyes after he was shot during the 2011 uprising, which led to the launch of his foundation that was at the forefront of providing medical assistance to 2,200 people at the time of the uprising.

Nabulsi is a young inspirational leader whose passion to give back to the community has seen him change the lives of over 140,000 people. After the Egyptian revolution, he rejected an offer to become the Minister of Youth and, instead, focused on assisting people living in Cairo’s slums with medical assistance, education, business advice, and micro-loans. He was named amongst the 100 Under 40: The World’s Most Influential Young Arabs 2016.

#40 Munyaradzi Gwatidzo

40 Africans Under 40
Image Credit: Graphic Online

Munyaradzi Gwatidzo is a Zimbabwean entrepreneur and the founder of Astro Mobile. Gwatidzo’s journey to entrepreneurship began when he was growing up as an orphan in one of Zimbabwe’s poorest suburbs. It was at a young age with three siblings to take care of when he developed an interest in electronics and collected discarded and broken phones from litter. He later taught himself how to repair phones and sold his first Nokia 3310 when he was 19.

He never looked back from there, and today, Astro is a large mobile electronics provider and an ecommerce firm with presence in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Tanzania, Malawi, and Zambia. The company employs over 2,000 people and is currently in the process of setting up a manufacturing plant in Zimbabwe. Munyaradzi Gwatidzo is an influential young executive making a significant contribution in Africa’s Information Technology sector.

Scroll to Top