A Nigerian entrepreneur has taken home the top prize at the Jack Ma Foundation’s first annual prize for African businesses.
Temie Giwa-Tubosun walked away with the top $250,000 cash prize from the $1 million available from the Africa Netpreneur Prize Initiative (ANPI), started by Chinese investor Jack Ma.
The organization says it will award a $1m grant to 10 African entrepreneurs every year for the next 10 years.
Giwa-Tubosun is the founder and CEO of LifeBank, a Lagos-based blood and oxygen delivery company that connects registered blood banks to hospitals and patients in need of urgent blood supplies.
She said: “The Africa Netpreneur Prize will give me the resources to grow LifeBank and expand our presence in Nigeria and throughout the rest of Africa. I look forward to continuing my journey to solve problems and make a significant impact on the future of Africa.”
Around 10,000 applicants from 50 African countries were whittled down to just 10 for the “Africa’s Business Heroes,” finale event, held Saturday in Accra, Ghana.
The final 10 pitched their businesses to four judges, including Ma, Zimbabwean businessman Strive Masiyiwa, Joe Tsai, Vice Chairman Alibaba Group and banking boss Ibukun Awosika.
In second and third place were Egyptian Omar Sakr, founder and CEO, Nawah-Scientific and Christelle Kwizera, founder, Water Access Rwanda who were awarded $150,000 and $100,000 each.
The remaining finalists each walked away with $65,000 for their businesses.