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Obi Ozor: Co-founder of Kobo360 Joins WEF Young Global Leader Class of 2021

Obi Ozor, the co-founder and CEO of Kobo360 has been honoured as a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader 2021 through which he embarks on a five-year leadership development journey to afford him the opportunity to reach the next level of impact, as he continues to build and scale his e-logistics startup company into a global brand.

The Young Global Leaders is an independent non-profit foundation that brings together young leaders who are diverse, dynamic, and globally representative for a five (5) year, personalized leadership program.

Its members are leaders heading governments and Fortune 500 companies and are also recipients of Nobel Prizes and Academy Awards, and serve as UN Goodwill Ambassadors. The Young Global Leaders has over 1,400 members and alumni representing over 120 nationalities.

The program has a purpose of creating a truly representative body, candidates are evaluated by a selection committee, which selects between 100-150 new members annually out of thousands of publicly nominated candidates.

Kobo360 was co-founded in 2017, with Ife Oyedele II, as a global e-logistics technology platform that will be connecting and advancing cargo across Africa and beyond. With over seven years of logistics and supply chain experience, Ozor manages all key aspects of Kobo360 including operations, controlling investments, compliance risk management and product growth.

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Young Global Leaders
Ife Oyedele II and Obi Ozor

The young global leader has as well been focused on creating mass-employment for his fellow African youth through job creation with his company that currently works with over 50,000 trucks and drivers across the continent. Before starting out, Obi was the Operations Coordinator at Uber Nigeria as well as an Investment Banker at J.P. Morgan.

In a press release, Obi Ozor, the co-founder and CEO of Kobo360 disclosed that was thrilled to be joining the World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leaders program and being recognised by such a prestigious organisation gives him faith that the work he and his team are doing was indeed making an impact, not only in Africa, but globally too.

He continued that,

Building Kobo360 from the ground up, and introducing a technology-enabled platform in a space that already had existing ways of doing things was not the easiest. We still have a long way to go, but we are in it for the long haul!”

He concludes that they have at Kobo360 created an African Logistics industry where technology is at the forefront of business, and he was looking forward to collaborating with other Young Global Leaders across the world, in different sectors of business, to tackle global challenges.

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His company has so far raised more than US$35 million and currently operates in 7 African countries. Some of their investors are Goldman Sachs, Y Combinator, and the International Finance Corporation (IFC).

According to Mariah Levin, the Head of the Forum of Young Global Leaders,

“The YGL Class of 2021 is comprised of thoughtful and courageous leaders who will shape a more sustainable and inclusive post-pandemic era.”

Obi Ozor has several accolades to his credit including the CNBC All Africa Business Leaders Awards 2019 ‘Innovator of the Year’ and ‘Young Business Leader of the Year’. Most recently, he was named as one of Fortune Magazine’s 40 under 40 ‘Global Leaders in Technology for 2020’.

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9 Startups Accepted into the First Next Health Accelerator with $15K Seed Funding

Next Health Accelerator
image courtesy: Valorigo

Intrepid Entrepreneurs, a non-profit designed to catalyze the power and promise of young people and women to fundamentally advance their societies, recruited nine startups for the inaugural cohort of the Next Health Accelerator.

Female, African entrepreneurs with a minimum viable product (MVP) from 26 countries applied to the program. After a rigorous review process, nine startups from seven countries were selected to begin the program in March 2021. The investor readiness accelerator is six months long and includes $15,000 seed funding, international mentors and partners, business support services, and value chain access.

The Next Health Accelerator’s focus on sexual and reproductive health is founded on the premise that unmet needs for sexual education, menstrual hygiene management, family planning, medication abortion, and STI diagnosis and treatment will be most sustainably delivered by local African enterprises.

Sexual and Reproductive Health issues directly affect 300 million women and girls on the continent and the productivity of the entire continent. For the continent to prosper and support its burgeoning youth population, it must harness the demographic dividend with access to equitable healthcare and economic opportunities. Next Health Accelerator addresses both.

Next Health Accelerator

The 2021 cohort includes:

  • Rocket Health: Provides telemedicine and pharmacy services for SRH needs including convenient lab test retrieval and medication delivery in Uganda
  • Verifie: Delivers STI self-tests and treatment products via doorstep delivery in Ghana
  • Pharmaserve: Specializes in delivering high-quality pharmaceuticals in Nigeria through a fully integrated inventory monitoring system
  • Girls Pride: Provides menstrual hygiene management education and skills training to create reusable pads in The Gambia
  • Pad-Up Creations: Employs over 100 people in Nigeria to produce single-use, chemical-free pads sold in 16 countries
  • Valorigo: Manufacturers single-use sanitary eco-friendly pads made from locally grown bamboo in the Congo
  • The Grace Cup: Delivers SRH education and reusable menstrual cups in Kenya
  • Kosmotive: Provides SRH information and access to SRH self-care products in Rwanda
  • Massira: Delivers SRH information interactively as well as access to SRH services and products through an online community in Ghana 
SEE ALSO |  9 Startups Accepted into the First Next Health Accelerator with $15K Seed Funding

Lindsey Simmonds, the Co-founder of Intrepid Entrepreneurs in a press statement said,

“After 15 years in philanthropy, I believe now more than ever that it is women who will solve women’s health challenges and it is Africans who will solve Africa’s development challenges.”

She continued that, development policies made in Washington, D.C. or London need to make room for the power and promise of the youth and women on the African continent. And on this premises, their Next Health Accelerator catalyzes African startups to investor readiness to make scalable, sustainable impact imbued with the commitment and determination that only comes from homegrown ideas.

Visit the intrepidentrepreneurs.org to learn more about the Next Health Accelerator 2021.

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