Dr. Mensah an Internet Pioneer and Fiber Optics Innovator met with Chinese business magnate Jack Ma in Accra, Ghana at the first Netpreneur Prize Awards.
Chinese billionaire Jack Ma initiated the Netpreneur Prize through his philanthropic organization — the Jack Ma Foundation — and four African partners with the purpose to award US$1 million annually for the next decade in support of small businesses. The awards held at the Accra International Conference Center on November 16, 2019, was formally opened by President of Ghana Nana Akufo-Addo with Mr. Ma and former United Nations Sec-Gen Banki Moon as keynote speakers.
Dr. Mensah told TheAfricanDream.net in a phone interview that: “I am very excited about what my friend Jack Ma is doing to assist young and passionate Africans and youths around the world. Internet startups and the likes are springing up all over, however, the money to sustain them is a headache sometimes for their young owners. Jack knows this, he’s been there himself, which is why I think it’s such a great way of giving back to reward and recognize Africa’s Business Heroes of change.”
Dr. Mensah himself left the United States after decades of contributing to its technological development and is now based in his homeland Ghana from where he has been working tirelessly to see the industrialization of Africa.
The fiber optics innovator presented an autograph copy of his book ‘The Right Stuff Comes in Black Too’ to Jack Ma, Chairman of Ali Baba Group, one of the most profitable business conglomerate on earth today.
Nigerian Temie Giwa-Tubosun and her company LifeBank which delivers blood to in-need hospitals in Nigeria, won first place at the Netpreneur contest on after five hours of competition. She took home a US$250,000 cash prize, beating some 10,000 other applicants from 50 of Africa’s 54 countries to be named “Africa’s Business Hero.”
In his chat with TheAfricanDream.net Dr. Mensah congratulated the young Nigerian and said her efforts represent the “undying spirit of the African woman and her perseverance to succeed despite the odds, a great example being British model Naomi Campbell [who has African heritage] and was on hand to speak about Fashion Entrepreneurship here today.” He also encouraged all to apply for next year’s contest which opens in the first half of 2020 according to the Jack Ma Foundation.
The event dubbed “Africa’s Business Heroes” was taped for TV and the show will soon air on respective networks across Africa and the globe.
Written by Oral Ofori