Female Business Leaders in Africa

Sibongile Sambo

Business leaders are important for the growth of businesses and mentoring of upcoming entrepreneurs. We have many super-star females who have transformed different business sectors in Africa.  Since we have many of these women, we have selected a few of them. Choosing only ten female go-getting entrepreneurs was a hassle, but here are our picks:

  1. Vera Songwe

In 1998, Vera Songwe, a young professional from Cameroon joined the World Bank. Her consistency and hard work paid off and she is currently the World Bank’s Country Director for Senegal, The Gambia, Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, and Mauritian, based in Dakar, Senegal. She has also worked in several countries and regions, including Cambodia, Morocco, and Tunisia.

Vera Songwe

  1. Wendy Ackerman

Wendy Ackerman is a non-executive director of Pick ‘n’ Pay, South Africa’s leading grocery chain. Together with her husband, Raymond Ackerman, she’s also in charge of the Ac and Welfare.


  1. Hadeel Ibrahim

Hadeel Ibrahim is the founding Executive director of the Mo Ibrahim foundation established in 2006 to help and support great African leadership.  She’s also a member of the Institute of African Leadership for Sustainable Development in Tanzania, Boards of the Mary Robinson Foundation, Climate Justice, Carter Center in the UK, and  Refugees International.


  1. Sibongile Sambo

Sibongile Sambo founded the first 100% black female-owned aviation company which offers clients professional and personalized flight options to various destinations around the world. She is a highly educated entrepreneur, having several degrees under her belt, and previously gained experience working for the likes of Telkom, City Power, and De Beers.

Sibongile Sambo

  1. Monica Musonda

Monica Musonda is the founder and CEO of the food processing company, Java foods which brings affordable nutrition to the Southern African Market. She is also a dual English solicitor and Zambian advocate. She has worked with Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote of the Dangote Industries Limited.

Monica Musonda

  1. Bridgette Radebe

Bridgette Radebe developed Mmakau Mining, an establishment that initiates explorations and helps to produce chrome, platinum, and gold. Presently, she is the Executive Chairperson of Mmakau Mining and was once involved in the South African Mineral & Petroleum Resources Development Act and the Mining Charter.


  1. Rapelang Rabana

Rapelang Rabana, a young South African Entrepreneur co-founded Yeigo Communications, which became one of the first companies in the world to offer VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) services for mobile phones. Although she was just 23 and had just finished her studies at the University of Cape Town, she knew exactly what she wanted and went for it.

Rapelang Rabana

  1. Eva Muraya

Eva Muraya is the founder and chief executive officer of Brand Strategy and Design limited. Her efforts in brand building and advertising skills have been of huge benefit to many big companies like FedEx, Xerox, and Equatorial Commercial Bank. This successful entrepreneur believes you can not get any result without hard work.


  1. Hajia Bola Shagaya

For over eight years, Hajia Bola Shagaya was on the board of Intercity Bank which is now known as Unity Bank Plc. Currently, Hajia Bola Shagaya is the managing director of Practoil limited, one of Nigeria’s largest importers and distributors of base oil. She has a huge investment in real estate within several major cities and has also been able to secure interests in banking, communications, and photography.


Hajia Bola Shagaya

  1. Isabel dos Santos

Now in her early forties, this astute businesswoman holds the title of being Africa’s first billionaire as well as the daughter of Jose Eduardo Dos Santos, Angola’s President. At just the age of 24,  she established her own restaurant called Miami Beach. Isabel Dos Santos studied at King’s College where she obtained an engineering degree. However, her ability to make a mark in the business world can be attributed to her interest in diverse sectors of business including banking, TV, and media.

Isabel Dos Santos