The Entrepreneurs of AFA@10: Miishe Addy, David Gonahasa, Chilufya Mutale-Mwila, Craig McLeod and Ndeye Thiaw
Over the last 10 years, the Angel Fair Africa has focused on identifying leading entrepreneurs who are normally in the blind spot with their heads down, laying the foundation for the launching of groundbreaking ventures addressing challenges that have continental and/or global appeal. From Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal to Uganda, Zambia and South Africa, African business leaders who would be sharing their entrepreneurial success stories at the 10th Anniversary of Angel Fair Africa in East London, South Africa on November 29-December 1, 2023 include the following:
Miishe Addy is co-Founder and CEO of Jetstream Africa, an e-logistics company headquartered in Tema, Ghana. A leading player in African e-logistics for importers and exporters, Jetstream leverages human expertise and proprietary technology to accelerate the movement of capital and goods across borders in Africa.
Miishe started her career as a top-ranked strategy analyst for Bain & Company in New York, practiced transactional law at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz and consulted for global development organizations, including TechnoServe and Global Partnerships. Winner of the London Business School Accel Award for African startups, Addy has been recognized by the Project Management Institute as one of the top 50 next-generation project managers globally, and by Forbes Woman Africa as a New Wealth Creator. Miishe earned an honors BA in Philosophy from Harvard College, and a JD from Stanford Law School. She lives in Accra, Ghana.
David Gonahasa is the co-Founder and CEO of Tripesa, a SaaS platform helping tourism, hospitality and events and experiences (E&E) companies to access technology, payments and logistics for their growth. Through one platform, Tripesa enables users to Get online, Sell online & Manage their businesses at a fraction of the standard cost by building no-code web portals, accepting bookings and payments online and managing payouts and other basic operations.
David, who built his first tech business Marketuganda.com in 2003, served as chief marketing officer at Mobicash Africa, a banking and payment company, where he managed commercial growth across 7 markets in Africa. Prior to Tripesa, David, who worked in the tourism industry for 8 years, co-founded Roundbob.com, a travel tech startup in Uganda.
In 2017, David was named Uganda Innovation Achiever of the Year at the MTN Innovation Awards. He is an Alibaba eFounder Fellow, a member of The Africa List and a member of the inaugural cohort of the IE Business School Social Innovators Retreat.
Chilufya Mutale is co-Founder and CEO of PremierCredit, a Pan African Challenger Bank for SMEs. The fintech is democratizing access to financial services for emerging markets in Africa, serving the unbanked and underserved. Chilufya started her career as an intern for an International Impact lender, rising up the ranks to manage different business units from retail, credit to customer experience and marketing. A proven driver of business performance and growth, Chilufya was recognized as one of the top 50 women in Fintech as well as one of the 100 Women creating a better Africa through contributing to one or more of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. In addition, Chilyfya is one of the 100 leaders recognized for combining profit and purpose to help achieve the UN Global Goals. Chilufya is one of the 100 Zambia Women Taking the Lead and is recognized as one of the 50 people to Connect with in Africa by the Tony Elumelu Foundation, which highlights projects and entrepreneurs across the continent whose businesses are making a positive impact. Chilufya is a certified expert in SME Finance and Risk Management. She studied at Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, Germany and lives in Lusaka, Zambia.
Craig McLeod is the Founder and CEO of BoxCommerce, a platform for small and medium-sized businesses to create eCommerce websites. The platform brings together shop management technology, payment, logistics, and last-mile delivery partners enabling small and medium-sized businesses to manage their sites seamlessly. He formerly started Plaidpay and Build which were experiences that lead to BoxCommerce. Craig is a former VC and advisor to VC funds. He has previously exited two companies and has mentored for Tech Stars and a hackathon for NASA. He served on the investment committee of GroTec Venture Capital and co-founded CNS Ideas Corp Canada, a holding company for technology projects, with Shawn McBay. CNS’ first project, seed-funded with $4,000, grew into a dynamic business making over $20,000 in revenue a month. Craig was part of Mark Shuttleworth’s team that built Thwarte, which was acquired by Verisgn in the late 1990s.
Ndeye Thiaw is the co-Founder and Managing Partner of Brightmore Capital, an impact investment firm focused on enterprises with high-growth potential in West Africa. Ndeye started her career in development finance, working on a risk management project for the Washington-based International Finance Corporation (IFC). She subsequently joined the IFC hub office in Dakar, Senegal, covering Francophone West Africa as part of the investment team in charge of identifying investment opportunities, executing transactions, managing portfolio projects and building relationships with clients in the banking sector.
Ndeye joined the steering committee of an angel investor network with a gender-focus lens in Senegal, spearheading the development of key strategic partnerships with private businesses, DFIs and government entities. Ndeye was recently the chairwoman for the investment committee of a USD30M Mastercard Foundation resiliency program for SMEs in Senegal in 2021. She sits on the board of Vilgro Africa, an impact investor based in Kenya and on the strategic council of InnovTech, the incubator of BEM Group at BEM Management School, one of the leading business schools in Francophone Africa. Ndeye holds an MBA from the University of California, Riverside. She currently lives in Dakar.