The Forum of Young Global Leaders is a community of innovators from diverse backgrounds and experiences. Search current members and alumni by year awarded, sector or region.

Osayi Alile

Chief Executive Officer, Aspire Coronation Trust (ACT) Foundation, Nigeria

A 2007 “Young Global Leader” (YGL) by the World Economic Forum, a Fellow of the African Leadership Network and an alumna of the Harvard Business School, IMD and Yale Executive Education Programs, Ms. Alile holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Sociology from the University of Lagos and a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Rutgers University, New Jersey, USA Pi Alpha Alpha.
Ms. Alile is the CEO ACT Foundation and consultant for Access Bank Plc on its CSR projects, Ms. Alile was the Executive Director of FATE Foundation, a leading private sector led not-for-profit organisation in Nigeria for 8 years
A facilitator/management trainer, she is also a consultant on non-profit management and strategy. A Sustainability Expert and Speaker. Osayi is the founding curator, Global Shapers Forum Nigeria.
Owing to her experiences, Osayi sits on the board of several organisations that includes Immediate past Chairperson Women in Management, Business and Public Service (WIMBIZ), House of Tara, Chairperson Zapphire Events, Culinary Academy and Global Dignity, an affiliation of the World Economic Forum in Norway.

Wilmot Allen

Founder, VentureLift Africa, Kenya

Based in Nairobi, Dr. Wilmot Allen is an entrepreneur, investor and political economist. Wilmot has invested or managed investments totaling over $4 billion across Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. His academic research and publications address comparative Diaspora economic engagement, creative economy, healthcare, international trade, innovative financing mechanisms and Sovereign Investment Funds.

Wilmot is Founder of VentureLift Africa (VLA), a venture studio ( with an advisory firm (VLA Capital Advisors facilitating investment, trade, tech transfer, market entry and expansion for SMEs, startups and corporates. VLA curates leading Diaspora companies into Africa and supports the market expansion of great African brands into global markets with significant Diaspora populations. The company is also an implementation partner for the USAID ATI program for the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) under Prosper Africa.

Wilmot leads the Africa operations for DGRID Energy as Managing Director and Partner. DGRID is a US-based company with a presence across emerging markets and in six countries in Africa. The company provides solar-based cold chains solutions for agriculture, horticulture, fisheries, healthcare and other verticals through its Cooling as a Service (CAAS) products.

Wilmot is a Partner with RH Managers based in Johannesburg, a private equity fund investing in healthcare across Southern and Eastern Africa. The fund invests in hospitals, clinics, pharmaceutical manufacturing, digital health, med-tech, medical device companies and healthcare-related educational institutions. Wilmot was recently a management consultant to the African CDC to create the strategy, fundraising and operational plan for its new Africa Public Health Foundation (APHF). He established a genomics company in Nairobi and had operational responsibilities as a management consultant to the R&D division of Allergan Pharmaceuticals and a clinical researcher with Proctor & Gamble.

In the creative sector in Africa, Wilmot is Co-Founder of the International Writer’s Lab (IWL), an accelerator and fellowship program for experienced writers of film and television. The IWL started in East Africa in 2021 and is now launching its first cohort in West Africa (Ghana). The program showcases African writing talent, connects the African film and television ecosystems to Hollywood creative talent and content buyers, facilitates deals for writers and catalyzes job creation and investment into the creative sector. The IWL will establish its first animation cohort in 2023.

Prior, Wilmot worked with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) in Washington DC, executing investments and managing the portfolio of the private equity funds team, financial institutions and infrastructure groups. At the IFC, he was also Senior Advisor to the CEO Lars Thunell on entrepreneurship initiatives supporting SMEs in Africa, Asia and the Middle East, in conjunction with the World Economic Forum. In other roles, Wilmot worked as a venture capital investor in women and minority-owned businesses with the Commonwealth Enterprise Fund in Boston, a digital media, technology M&A investment banker with JPMorgan H&Q to Silicon Valley and international companies in San Francisco, and a private placement and IPO investment banker with Merrill Lynch in New York. Wilmot previously was the Director of East Africa with CrossBoundary LLC, leading the transaction advisory practice for East Africa from Nairobi. Under his leadership, this group served as the transaction team for a USAID Presidential Trade Africa initiative, the East Africa Trade and Investment Hub and established CrossBoundary’s most successful advisory office.

Wilmot is a visiting researcher with the Africa Studies Department of the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. Wilmot is co-author of the forthcoming Sovereign Wealth Funds and the New State Capitalism in Africa (Palgrave MacMillan). Wilmot has a PhD from Georgetown University in Comparative Political Economy, an MBA from the Wharton Business School, an MPA from Harvard University and BA from Yale University.

Salim Amin

Chairman, Camerapix, Kenya

Salim Amin is Chairman of Camerapix, Founder and Chairman of The Mohamed Amin Foundation, and Founder of A24 Media. As Executive Producer and Presenter, Amin finished a documentary chronicling his father's life in March 2006 entitled “MO & ME”, which has won 15 awards for best documentary in the United States, Canada, India and Africa, including the Grand Jury Award at the New York International Film Festival. He is a Fellow of the African Leadership Initiative and a Member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network. In 2010, Amin was one of only 150 people from around the world invited by US President Barack Obama to the Presidential Entrepreneurship Summit in Washington, DC. In December 2012, he was named as one of the “100 Most Influential Africans” by New African Magazine and the same magazine named him in their “top 50 Under 50” Africans May 2013 issue. In October 2014, Salim launched his weekly Talk Show “The Scoop”, speaking to great African personalities around the Continent, and reaching a global audience of over 200 million people on television, radio and online. In 2016, he produced the multiple award-winning documentary “The Sound Man” on the life and work of Camerapix Sound Recordist Abdul Rahman, and published his first book in December 2018 titled KENYA: Through My Father’s Eyes, a coffee-table book showcasing his father’s unique images of Kenya. It is also the first historical book on Africa incorporating Augmented Reality with 12 videos embedded in the pages of the book.

Tewodros Ashenafi

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Southwest Holdings, Ethiopia

Tewodros Ashenafi is Founder and Chairman of SouthWest Holdings Ltd., a leading Ethiopian holding company, and Chairman of Ambo Mineral Water, one of the leading beverage brands in Ethiopia and part of Coca Cola Beverages Africa. Mr. Ashenafi is the local partner and did the largest privatization and private transaction in Ethiopian history, the $1.4 billion enterprise value privatization of (NTE), were he joined as board director, and JTI. He is also the Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of SouthWest Energy (HK), an African indigenous oil and gas exploration company, which is the top 10 acreage holder in East Africa. Ashenafi started his career at Merrill Lynch & Co. He serves on the Board of the EastWest Institute, a leading security think. He is also on the International Advisory Board of Atlantic Council, a non-partisan institution devoted to promoting transatlantic cooperation and international security, he is on the Advisory Board of Cepheus Growth Capital Partners a leading Ethiopian-focused private equity firm. Mr. Ashenafi is on the Advisory Board of the Columbia University Africa Centre. Mr. Ashenafi is a member of Young President's Organisation (YPO) Intercontinental Chapter. Ashenafi holds a degree in Economics from Columbia University and is an alumnus of the Harvard Business School. He was nominated as a Young Global Leader (YGL) Davos 2009.

Solomon Assefa

Vice-President, Climate and Impact Science, IBM Research Africa, South Africa

Dr. Solomon Assefa is a Vice President at IBM Research. He leads the global effort focused on developing core technologies for climate change mitigation and adaptation, healthcare and life sciences, computing and nanotechnology. Under his leadership, hundreds of researchers from IBM’s global labs are pioneering disruptive and commercially viable technologies for sustainable hybrid cloud, material discovery for carbon capture, carbon footprint reduction, climate risk and impact modelling, and discovery of therapeutics and biomarkers. In 2021, Dr. Assefa incubated and lead a company-wide task force that provided strategic input on IBM’s internal sustainability strategy, and how IBM can become a leading technology provider to enable clients in advancing their sustainability goals. This taskforce informed IBM’s broader strategy that led to a new technology offering called Environmental Intelligence Suite (EIS).

Furthermore, Dr. Assefa is responsible for IBM’s Africa labs, located in Kenya and South Africa. He is responsible for fostering local innovation ecosystems by forming new models for partnership with government, industry, academia, non-profits, and start-ups. Under his leadership, the labs have developed scalable technology solutions for emerging markets in areas of financial services, telcos, healthcare, supply chain, energy and utilities, agriculture, and public sector. The Africa labs have also been instrumental in the development of technology in climate and sustainability, thereby not only contributing towards solving Africa’s grand challenges but also serving as a model on a global scale.

Early in his career, Dr Assefa was based in IBM’s iconic Yorktown Heights (NY) Research Lab, where he worked on IBM’s nanophotonics and MRAM technologies with responsibilities spanning scientific research, product development, and technology transfer. In addition, he has also co-authored over 150 publications in peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings, has over 70 patents granted, and has appeared as a guest speaker at numerous high-profile forums and conferences worldwide, including Davos. His work has been featured in Nature magazine, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Forbes, Technology Review, EE Times, and IEEE Spectrum, among many others.

Dr. Assefa is a recipient of several technical awards including the Technical Accomplishment Award, Corporate Recognition Award, and Invention Achievement Awards from IBM. He was named one of the World’s Top Young Innovators under 35 and received the TR35 awarded by MIT’s Technology Review (2011). He was honoured by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader in 2013. He is an Honorary Professor at University of Witwatersrand (Wits), a member of the Industrial Advisory Board of the MIT Climate and Sustainability Consortium and a member of the World Economic Forum Global Futures Council. Dr. Assefa is also a member of IBM CEO’s Acceleration Team (AT), where members of the AT are key senior executives who drive IBM’s innovation and growth strategy.

Lois Auta

Founder and Executive Director, Cedar Seed Foundation, Nigeria

BSc in Public Administration, University of Abuja. Over five years of experience advocating for the betterment of persons with disabilities. Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Cedar Seed Foundation, Nigeria. President, Disabled Sports Club - Abuja, President, Women on Wheels Multipurpose Cooperative Society. Vice-President, Mandela Washington Fellowship Alumni Association, Nigeria Chapter. Assistant National Coordinator, Network of Women with Disabilities. Board Member, Potters Gallery Initiative.

Fatoumata Ba

Founder and Executive Chair, Janngo Capital, Côte d'Ivoire

Fatoumata BA is a Tech Entrepreneur & VC Investor, Founder & Executive Chair of Janngo Capital and Chairwoman of the Board of Auchan in Africa.
Janngo builds, grows and invests in pan-African ‘tech for good’ champions with proven business models and inclusive social impact. Janngo is Africa's largest gender equal tech fund and is backed by top-tier African & International strategic and financial investors including the European Investment Bank, the Mulliez Family, Clipperton Finance & African HNWI.

At Jumia, the #1 tech unicorn in Africa to be listed on the NYSE, she served as Founder & CEO in Ivory Coast, Managing Director in Nigeria and Member of the Executive committee at Africa level, driving the performance of 130+ operations across Africa, spanning around 10+ verticals in 30+ countries with 3000+ direct jobs, 70000+ indirect jobs and opportunities created for more than 500 000 SMEs across Africa.

She is passionate about leapfrogging development through technology in Africa, in particular when it comes to women's entrepreneurship & empowerment, SMEs growth and formalization as well as tackling health and education issues through medtech and edtech.

Her career and commitment have been rewarded with several distinctions including The World Economic Forum ‘Young Global Leader’, Choiseul 100 Africa ‘Economic Leaders of Tomorrow’, Forbes Africa ‘30 under 30’ and the Aenne Burda Award for visionary leadership, optimism & courage alongside Marissa Mayer, Arianna Huffington and Viviane Reding.

She served on the Board & Investment Committee of Creadev Africa, on the Council of Women in Africa, on the Global Future Council on the New Economic Agenda of the World Economic Forum and currently serves on the Board of SouthBridge Investment Bank

Kingsley Bangwell

Co Founder KNOSK N100 A Day Charity School, Youngstars Foundation, Nigeria

“In this lifetime, I will work for youth ONLY” states Kingsley Bangwell, who in 1995, at age 22, started Youngstars Foundation in response to the bad governance that fostered abject poverty on his family and elongated his years in secondary school from six years to eight years. Thus he started Youngstars Foundation from a local barber shop in Jos which has today grown into a leading African youth development organization.

Kingsley is passionate about building young people and strengthening youth organizations to deliver development impact in the areas of governance, leadership, entrepreneurship, gender and education. Some flagship projects associated with Kingsley Bangwell include but not limited to Vote Not Fight Campaign with Nigeria A-List Artist Tuface Idibia, Thinking School Africa – Innovation bootcamp in Dubai and Nigeria, Young Aspirant Leadership Fellowship that produced 23 parliamentarians in the 2019 Nigeria general elections, Female And More self esteem and leadership project implemented in over 200 secondary schools nationwide, reaching over 4,500 teen girls.

Under his leadership, Youngstars has built its first online learning platform called Female And More that offers a 30-day self esteem module to young females to self believe, dream big and pursue greatness. Thousands of young females are already signing up and he envisions reaching millions of young African females with the program by 2025.

He is also Co-Founder of KNOSK-N100/30cents A-Day Secondary School for children from low income families in Kuje Area Council of Abuja Nigeria. KNOSK School is Nigeria’s first quality secondary school that offers a pay-as-you-can, pay-as-you-go and fees subsidy through a crowd-matching scheme. He envisions building 50 KNOSK Schools by 2040 to serve 25,000 secondary school students from low income families across Africa.

Kingsley Bangwell has travelled to about 30 different countries speaking and facilitating youth sessions among others. Together with his wife they cohost Family Street Radio Show every Sunday on 99.9 KISS FM by 7-8pm.

Find more about him on and and

Farida Bedwei

Software Engineer, Microsoft, Ghana

Farida Nana Efua Bedwei is the Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Logiciel (Ghana) Ltd, a software company developing banking systems for the microfinance industry. Her role involves assessing the industry and coming up with practical solutions, which are easy to use by persons with no formal banking training. She believes the informal sector, which make up between 60%-70% of the population across Africa, deserve the same banking services as those in the formal sector. Thus by building affordable banking systems for them, the microfinance industry will be able to realize their full potential and offer adequate banking services to their customers.

Prior to co-founding Logiciel, Farida worked in the telecom software industry, developing mobile gateways and services for mobile networks and content providers.

Farida is also an author and a disability-rights advocate, and has been featured on many media platforms, notable amongst this is C NN African Voices in February 2015. She has also won a number of local and international awards, and was adjudged the most influential woman in business and governance (finance sector) for her work in computerizing the microfinance industry. She currently serves on the Board of the National Communication Authority and Sharecare Ghana (an NGO which raises awareness for persons with autoimmune and neurological conditions).

Jesmane Boggenpoel

Managing Partner, AIH Capital, South Africa

Snr business executive with experience in investments, private equity and as an entrepreneur. Managing Partner and co founder of a wholly owned and managed women private equity firm AIH Capital - a generalist fund in South Africa focused on the mid market. Designed and oversight for the ESG Management Information for the fund across the deal life cycle. Extensive board experience and board member of JSE listed companies : EOH (Tech), Murray & Roberts (construction), Spur (food retail). Board member of diversified agri conglomerate - ETG, with operations in 45 countries, including 26 African countries, 9 Asian and 4 European. Masters from Harvard JFK School of Government (2012), Chartered Accountant (SA).
Author of book on racial reconciliation and inclusion: My Blood Divides and Unites.
Creator of online Udemy course : Dealing with the Heart of Race and Gender Inequality in the Workplace
Young Global Leader alumni. BMW Foundation Responsible Leader. Interests: emerging markets, innovation, investments, private equity, technology, governance, ESG, diversity & inclusion

Mehmet Gürcan Daimagüler

Special Adviser, Tropical General Investments Group, Nigeria

Lawyer and Public Policy Expert based in Germany. PhD in Philosophy, JD, University of Bonn; MPA, Harvard University. Expert on renewable energy technologies. 1997-2005, Member of Federal Board, Free Democratic Party of Germany; currently, Partner, Thomsen Partner Law Firm, Berlin. World Fellow, Yale University. Lucius N. Littauer Fellow, Harvard University. Member of the Advisory Board, Yale World Fellows Program

Mohammed Dewji

President, Mohammed Enterprises Tanzania (MeTL), Tanzania

Mohammed Dewji is a businessman, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and former politician. He serves as the President of MeTL Group, a Tanzanian conglomerate founded by his father in the 1970s. Mohammed is single-handedly responsible for increasing MeTL’s revenues from $30 million to over 2 billion between 1999 and 2022. Currently, MeTL group has investments in textiles, energy, petroleum, agriculture, insurance, mobile telephony, transport and logistics, trading, real estate, and food and beverages (FMCG). The group conducts business in 8 countries and employs over 34,800 people. To date, MeTL’s operations contribute ~3.3% of Tanzania’s GDP.

Mohammed served as a Member of Parliament from 2005 – 2015 for his hometown of Singida. In 2022, Forbes listed him as the 15th richest person in Africa, with an estimated net worth of US$1.5 billion. Forbes also described him as the youngest billionaire on the continent for 6 consecutive years. Further, Mohammed was the first Tanzanian billionaire on the cover of Forbes Africa in 2013, and in 2015 was named Forbes Person of the Year. In 2021, Mohammed was again featured on the cover of Forbes Africa for its 10-year anniversary issue. That same year, South African president Cyril Ramaphosa appointed Mohammed to serve on the investment advisory council for the Republic of South Africa, a position Mohammed still holds.

Beyond business, Mohammed has demonstrated an exemplary record of contributing to the well-being of Tanzania and beyond via the Mo Dewji Foundation, which he established in 2014. The foundation covers education, health, community development, water accessibility and gender empowerment.

In 2022, Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business awarded Mohammed an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters for distinguished leadership in business and philanthropy. He also delivered the 2022 McDonough Graduation Commencement Address.

In 2016, Mohammed joined the Giving Pledge – an initiative started by Warren Buffett and Bill Gates. This pledge aims to address society's most pressing problems by inviting the world's wealthiest to commit over half of their wealth to philanthropy. Mohammed is the first Tanzanian and one of few Africans to have made the pledge.

Mohammed is also an investor in football, with a 49% stake in Simba Sports Club, the largest sports club in Tanzania. Since his USD$ 20 million investment 4 years ago, the club has made it to the quarterfinals of the African Champions league, and is now ranked one of the top 20 clubs in the continent.