Africa Netpreneur Prize Initiative (ANPI) has released the names of the top 10 finalists heading to its grand finale in Accra, Ghana on 16 November 16, 2019.
Two Rwandans are among the selected entrepreneurs.
They include Kevine Kagirimpundu, co-founder and Chief Executive of UZURI KY Rwanda, which is an African-inspired eco-friendly shoe brand, and Christelle Kwizera, the founder of Water Access Rwanda that pioneered a safe water microgrid that reclaims broken boreholes and transforms them into state-of-the-art solar-powered water kiosks and pipelines.
The ANPI is a philanthropic initiative spearheaded by the Jack Ma Foundation aimed at supporting and inspiring the next generation of African entrepreneurs.
The finalists were chosen from nearly 10,000 applicants from 50 African countries.
The finalists were shortlisted and will now go on to pitch their business directly to four finale judges - Jack Ma, Founder of Alibaba Group and the Jack Ma Foundation; Strive Masiyiwa, Founder and Executive Chairman of Econet Group; Ibukun Awosika, Chairman of First Bank of Nigeria and Founder/CEO of The Chair Centre Group; and Joe Tsai, Executive Vice Chairman of Alibaba Group - during a televised finale event called “Africa’s Business Heroes”.
The winners will receive a share of the $1 million USD grant prize pool.
At the event, African and global entrepreneurs, investors, educators, and leaders will convene to discuss how best to enable entrepreneurship and the digital economy across the continent.
Guest speakers at the conference will include Ban Ki-moon, Former UN Secretary General and Co-chair of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens.
“We launched the Africa Netpreneur Prize Initiative to identify top entrepreneurs from across the continent, not only to reward them but to inspire a whole new generation of potential gamechangers for Africa. I have been inspired by the entrepreneurs I met in Africa, many of whom are dealing with the same challenges we faced when we started Alibaba years ago. I truly believe the potential of Africa’s business heroes is limitless,” said Jack Ma, Founder of Alibaba Group and the Jack Ma Foundation.