Africa’s Top LinkedIn Influencers 2021

The Tech Times Africa Top LinkedIn Influencer Award is Africa’s largest and most prestigious accolades for the most influential personalities in the African LinkedIn community. The Award is designed to identify and recognize those outstanding personalities and project their achievements to the African society and the world at large.

The winners

Tony Elumelu

Chairman, UBA Group

Tony O. Elumelu is an entrepreneur and a philanthropist. The chairman of Heirs Holdings, United Bank for Africa Plc and Transcorp Nigeria Plc. In his early career, he made a name for himself by turning the nearly bankrupt Standard Trust Bank into a top-five player in Nigeria. In 2005 he led the largest merger in the banking sector in sub-Saharan Africa, acquiring United Bank for Africa (UBA). In five years, he transformed it from a single-country bank to a pan-African institution with over 7 million customers in 19 African countries.

In 2010, he commenced full-time operations at Heirs Holdings and founded The Tony Elumelu Foundation, an Africa-based and African-funded philanthropic organization focused on supporting entrepreneurs in Africa by enhancing the competitiveness of the private sector.

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

DG, World Trade Organization

Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is a global finance expert, an economist and international development professional with over 30 years of experience working in Asia, Africa, Europe, Latin America and North America. Currently, Dr Okonjo-Iweala is the Director-General at World Trade Organization [WTO] and the immediate past Chair of the Board of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. She also sits on the Boards of Standard Chartered PLC and Twitter Inc. She is a skilled negotiator and has brokered numerous agreements, which have produced win-win outcomes in negotiations. She is regarded as an effective consensus builder and an honest broker enjoying the trust and confidence of governments and other stakeholders.

She is renowned as the first female and African candidate to contest for the presidency of the World Bank Group in 2012, backed by Africa and major developing countries in the first truly contestable race for the world’s highest development finance post. As Managing Director of the World Bank, she had oversight responsibility for the World Bank’s $81 billion operational portfolio in Africa, South Asia, Europe and Central Asia. Dr Okonjo-Iweala spearheaded several World Bank initiatives to assist low-income countries during the 2008-2009 food crisis and later during the financial crisis. In 2010, she was Chair of the World Bank’s successful drive to raise $49.3 billion in grants and low interest credit for the poorest countries in the world.

Samuel Ajiboyede

CEO, Zido Global

A disruptive digital innovator, a start-up tech wizard, business strategist, serial entrepreneur, and international keynote speaker. Samuel has a huge experience in technology, finance, and global leadership and has grown a very strong influence and following in the tech and digital space in Africa. He is fast establishing himself as a thought leader in early-stage tech investment and finance, blazing a trail in the digital freight broker industry. Formerly a partner with General Electric in 2012, where he redesigned the hybrid power system of telecom site BTS to work with multiple power input, solar, public power, and generator. He went on to found the multi-award company Fleetpartners in 2014, a leading corporate car and bus sharing company. In 2019, he created Zido a financial operating system for the Supply chain. Connecting manufacturers & suppliers to carriers and the global market.

He also serves as the managing director of Microspace Technologies, a mainstream tech company that over the past ten years provides IT solutions to various sectors in Nigeria across oil and gas, fleet and logistics, telecom, banking, and finance. Graduating from Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Stanford University Graduate school of business, Harvard Business School, the University of Dundee, Scotland in the UK.

Toyin Sanni

Business Leader/Investment Banker

Toyin Sanni is Founder and CEO of the Emerging Africa Group, a Financial Services Group comprising investments in Investment Banking, Financial Technology, Venture Capital and Microfinance Banking, Co-Founder of the Africa Investment Roundtable as well as Board Chair at Layer 3 Limited and Vice-Chair, Fundall Limited, both of which are innovative technology companies.

A prominent Investment Banker, Public Personality /Speaker and Influencer, she derives satisfaction from grooming future leaders (through capacity building initiatives such as a highly rated Executive Mentorship program) and from preferring capital solutions for financing & investing challenges of African governments, businesses & individuals.

Prof. Ndubuisi Ekekwe

Author & Entrepreneur

Prof Ndubuisi Ekekwe invented and patented a robotic system which the United States Government acquired assignee rights. Dr Ekekwe holds two doctoral and four master’s degrees including a PhD in engineering from Johns Hopkins University, USA. He earned an undergraduate degree from FUT Owerri where he graduated as his class best student. While in Analog Devices Corp, he co-designed an accelerometer for the iPhone. A recipient of IGI Global “Book of the Year” award, a TED Fellow, IBM Global Entrepreneur and World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, Prof. Ekekwe has held professorships in Carnegie Mellon University and Babcock University, and served in the United States National Science Foundation Committee.

The South African press called him “a doctor of innovation” for helping organizations on the mechanics of business innovation, strategy, and growth. Since 2009, the Chairman of Fasmicro Group which controls many startups and entities has been writing in the Harvard Business Review. He was recognized by The Guardian as one of 60 Nigerians Making “Nigerian Live Matter” on Nigeria’s 60th Independence Day.

We congratulate all the winners and top influencers in the African LinkedIn community.

We say, keep doing what you’ve been doing! The African people love it!! Don’t stop making Africa proud.