Recently, the World Economic Forum honored 199 young leaders from 70 countries for their professional accomplishments and commitment to society.
Among the 70, six were Nigerians and according to a report the Young Global Leaders (YGL) Class of 2013 is made up of honourees representing all sectors of society. 50 percent was taken from business while the remaining 50 percent was shared around arts and culture, academia, civil society, government, media and non-profits; 42 percent are women.
Here is a brief profile of the six Nigerians; Ndubuisi Ekekwe, Amy Jadesimi, Alex Okosi, Ola Orekunrin, Cobhams Asuquo and Tara Fela-Durotoye that made the list.
Cobhams Asuquo, Founder and CEO CAMP (Nigeria)
Cobhams Emanuel Asuquo is a Nigerian song writer/music producer per excellence who started his professional training as a lawyer, but later branched into music full-time. Today, he is known for producing some of the finest artistes in Nigeria. Noteworthy among these artistes is the Nigerian soul-singing sensation, Asa, whose 2007 debut album became an international hit. In addition to producing the album, Cobhams wrote and co-wrote several of its hits songs. In 2005, Cobhams signed on to Sony ATV London as a songwriter. Today, he is CEO/ Head of Productions of CAMP (Cobhams Asuquo Music Productions), an all-encompassing entertainment company that discovers, nurtures and exposes great talents. Cobhams has won multiple local and international awards for his creative and entrepreneurial contributions to the Nigerian music industry.
Alex Okosi, Senior Vice-President and Managing Director Viacom International Media Networks Africa (formerly MTV Networks Africa) (South Africa)
Nigerian-born, US-educated media executive Alex Okosi is the senior vice president and Managing Director of MTV Networks Africa. He championed the MTV’s move to set up MTV Base in Africa in February 2005, at a period when many didn’t believe there was opportunity on the African continent.
He has also spearheaded the launch of other localized Viacom brands in Africa encompassing Nickelodeon and Comedy Central. Okosi’s mission in Africa, has always been to develop content and experiences for audiences that not only entertains and showcases the best of African music and entertainment; but also serves to socially empower audiences in Africa and around the world. Currently, he is responsible for managing the growth and development of the Viacom International Media Networks Africa business – a multichannel portfolio that reaches over 100 million viewers and includes MTV, MTV base, Nickelodeon, VH1, BET International and Comedy Central. Okosi is the creative force behind the MTV Africa Music Awards, a high-profile event that has helped talented African artists raise their international profile and status.
Tara Fela-Durotoye, Founder and Chief Executive Officer House of Tara International (Nigeria)
Tara Fela-Durotoye is a leading Nigerian makeup artist and lawyer. A pioneer in the bridal makeup profession in Nigeria, and wife to prolific Business Strategist and Corporate Activator, Fela Durotoye, Tara launched the first bridal directory in 1999, set up international standard makeup studio, and established the first makeup school in Nigeria.
She is the founder and current CEO of House of Tara International.
In 2007, She was awarded the Africa SMME Award and the Entrepreneur award in South Africa
Ndubuisi Ekekwe, Founder and Chairman First Atlantic Semiconductors and Microelectronics Nigeria
Ekekwe has authored four books and holds a U.S. patent. A regular contributor to Harvard Business Review, he founded First Atlantic Semiconductors & Microelectronics – West Africa’s leading embedded systems company with design services partnerships with Altera and Microchip. Dr. Ekekwe, an MBA graduate, was formerly a Banking Executive with Diamond Bank Lagos and has spoken in leading conferences on technology, entrepreneurship and Africa.
He’s also the founder of African Institution of Technology (AFRIT), an institution.
Amy Jadesimi, Managing director LADOL (Nigeria)
Dr. Jadesimi received her first degree from Oxford University, where she earned a BA in Physiological Sciences. She then attended Oxford University Medical School, from which she graduated as a medical doctor (MD). After Oxford, Dr. Jadesimi joined Goldman Sachs International in London as part of the Investment Banking Division, specializing in corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions. She then attended Stanford Business School, from which she earned her MBA in Business Administration. While at Stanford, Amy completed an internship with Brait Private Equity in Johannesburg, South Africa, where she worked as a transaction executive in Private Equity. After graduating from business school Amy moved to Nigeria where she set up a financial consultancy firm before joining the Management Team of LiLe as Managing Director.
Ola Orekunrin, Founder The Flying Doctors (Nigeria)
Dr. Ola Orekunrin is the founder of West Africa’s first emergency air ambulance service, The Flying Doctors. Raised in the United Kingdom by foster parents, Dr Orekunrin became widely known for becoming England’s youngest doctor at age 21. In a tragic loss, one of her younger sisters died from a sickle cell anaemia crisis. Ola knew that her sister’s death could have been prevented if there had been adequate emergency care and an air ambulance, so setting out to reduce the numbers that die in the same manner, she started The Flying Doctors. Despite the enormous challenge of gathering both government and private support, overcoming rejections and raising funds, Ola has established a business of great social impact. She is the recipient of several awards and honours.
OTHER AFRICAN AWARD RECIPIENTS: