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Our Favorite Women in Business this Year

Updated: Dec 23, 2022

In the past couple of decades, entrepreneurship used to be men's palaver, but today, women are beginning to break records in the world of business. The interesting part of it is that they are not just women, but they are as well YOUNG. This recent development spreads across all countries of the world and Nigerians are not left out. Some young women have really stood up recently to bring about significant changes in the economy of the country and also contribute to the nation's renaissance through their workable business ideas. You can't afford not to know these young female entrepreneurs…

1. Uche Pedro (nee Eze) - Bellanaija: Uche Pedro is a 38-year-old Nigerian entrepreneur, who is the founder of Bellanaija, an entertainment, fashion and lifestyle website. She is now one of the most popular bloggers in Nigeria. Her site which she created in 2006, has grown to become one of the hottest destination for celebrity news and fashion trends on the internet, attracting more than 10 million page views per month. She was recently named in the '30 Most Promising Young Entrepreneurs In Africa in 2014' by Forbes.

2. Dr. Ola Orekunrin - Flying Doctors. Olamide Orekunrin is a 36 year-old British-Nigerian Doctor who founded Flying Doctors Nigeria; a charity air operated Emergency medical organization, which is the first indigenous air ambulance in Nigeria based in Lagos. Ola graduated as one of the youngest medical doctors in England. She is also a trained helicopter pilot. She was also inspired to assuage the problems of emergency medical services in the Nigeria. Undaunted by difficult challenges, she successfully established Flying Doctors in Lagos, Nigeria in 2007 and she is currently the CEO. She was listed among Young Global leaders by World Economic Forum in 2013. Ola has also lectured on entrepreneurship at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Olamide is also a TED fellow.

3. Bilikiss Adebiyi-Abiola - WeCyclers. Bilikiss is the CEO of WeCyclers, a Lagos-based company focused on giving low-income communities in developing countries a chance to capture value from waste and clean up their neighborhoods through an incentive-based recycling program. Wecyclers builds and manages a fleet of low-cost cargo-bicycles to collect recyclable waste in slums.Although born and raised in Lagos, Bilikiss developed the idea for her business in the US as a student at the MIT Sloan School of Management, following a five-year career as a corporate software engineer. Assigned to a study project to help people at the bottom of the pyramid, Bilikiss decided to work on waste. Thinking of or looking at garbage collection as a profession from a conventional point of view may be disgusting but Bilikiss has proven such viewpoint wrong because for her, it is garbage in, money out!

4. Yasmin Belo-Osagie - CoFounder - She Leads Africa: Yasmin Belo-Osagie is a Co-Founder of She Leads Africa, a Nigeria-based social enterprise that equips female entrepreneurs in Africa with the knowledge, network, and financing needed to build and scale strong businesses. She is a management consultant focusing primarily on developing growth strategies for a number of local and international corporate. In 2011, she spent a year attending culinary school and working as a sous-chef in the Mandarin Oriental in Hong Kong. Yasmin is a graduate of Princeton University with degrees in history and finance, and she is just 26 years old

5. Nkiru Achukwu Ayemere - Founder/Creative Director - Zephans and co. Nkiru Achukwu runs a fashion company in Nigeria called Zephans and Co. The Nigerian company owns Levictoria – a label tailored and aimed to women. Within the first quarter of 2017, Zephans and Co also released a male and kids fashion label, all made in Nigeria. Nkiru studied accounting at the University of Benin, Nigeria. However, the fashion industry was something she had always been passionate about so although she started her professional path in a slightly different field, she always knew she would end up doing something related to fashion. “My push came when I got fired at my job so I decided to use the little money I had saved up to go to fashion school.” she recalls. Zephans and Co has a particular trait – 80% of its staff are women.

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