Forbes Magazine has named 30-year-old Information, Communication Technology (ICT) expert Rachel Sibande as one of 30 most promising young entrepreneurs in Africa for 2016.
Sibande is the founder and chief executive officer of mHub, Malawi’s first technology hub that is reaching out to young people to help them exploit their technology skills to become technology entrepreneurs and developers.
Her firm harnesses the potential that lies in the young people, while enhancing an entrepreneurship culture.
Rachel’s reaction was: “I am very humbled to be recognised by Forbes Magazine. I am really humbled that they think I can fit in such big shoes. I take it that it’s hope for Malawi’s young people that we can make a difference. It feels like the work has just begun”.
In an earlier interview as the cover for Everywoman, Sibande indicated that the organisation holds a number of activities such as mobile application developer competitions, discussion forums on emerging trends in technology and motivational talks among other things.
Last year, Sibande was one of four African recipients of 40 Google awards. Annually, Google awards outstanding female computer science students studying in universities from North America, Europe, Middle East, Asia Pacific, and Africa.
She described it as a best moment when she received the Google Anita Borg award, named after the legend computer scientist.
Said Sibande then: “Having an opportunity to set my feet on the Google offices in London, interacting with the programmers, engineers and programme managers behind many of Google products such as Gmail, Google Chrome, Youtube and Google search was an absolutely life-changing and phenomenal experience for a technology enthusiast like me.
“The imagination of being recognised by the world’s largest search engine and email service that serves almost 500 million people is such a grand blessing of all time for me. So I was very delighted”.
Ten-year-old Panashe Jere who recently made headlines for his innovation is one of the children from mHub’s children’s coding club.
Little Panashe, who also had a chance to meet Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg recently, was taught how to develop mobile apps at the hub and eventually won the Smart Kid Category of the TNM Smart Challenge.
His mobile app emerged the best out of over 14 apps developed by Children.
Kenyans dominate the list of Forbes Magazine 30 most promising young African entrepreneurs.
Malawi has two so far listed, the other one being 26- -year-old Mike Chilewe Junior who is charting his own path and cutting his teeth as a media entrepreneur.n