Young Founders 2018

Brenda Katwesigye / Uganda

Brenda Katwesigye / Uganda

Brenda Katwesigye is the co-founder and CEO of Wazi Vision.
Founded in 2016 and based in Uganda, Wazi Vision provides affordable
eye care through a two-fold approach. Using recycled plastic, it
manufactures glasses that are 80% cheaper than regular ones.
The company has also developed an augmented reality app that enables
fast and affordable testing of eye defects without the need for an
optometrist. Brenda has previously won the African Female Entrepreneur
of the Year Award and the Public Health Award Uganda for the Best
Innovation in Health. She was also selected to be in the first cohort of
the FLANE accelerator for female empowerment in Berlin, Germany.
Moreover, Wazi Vision has raised seed funding from the United States
Africa Development Foundation in partnership with the Citi Foundation
and is also an investee of GreenTec Capital Partners.

Carolina Bigonha Cardoso / Brazil

Carolina Bigonha Cardoso / Brazil

Carolina Bigonha is the co-founder and COO of Hekima, based in Belo
Horizonte, Brazil. In 2015, Hekima started building data-driven and
Artificial Intelligence solutions for people and organisations wanting
to solve bold challenges and improve the state of the world. Driven by
people who are passionate about the transformational power of data,
Hekima has already helped 100 decision makers across several industries
– some of which include: education, industrial planning, public security
and customer segmentation. The company has participated in prestigious
programs by Endeavor and is funded by FIR Capital.

Emma Dicks / South Africa

Emma Dicks / South Africa

Emma Dicks is the co-founder of CodeSpace based in Cape Town,
South Africa. CodeSpace was founded in 2016 and runs a coding school,
CodeSpace Academy, which equips young people with the skills they
need to access economic opportunities in the ICT sector. CodeSpace
scales the impact of CodeSpace Academy by supporting organisations in
starting and running satellite coding schools. Emma has been awarded
the Queen’s Young Leader award by Her Majesty the Queen for her work
in advancing social justice.

Fauzan Gani / Indonesia

Fauzan Gani / Indonesia

Fauzan Gani is the co-founder and CEO of DOOgether based in Jakarta,
Indonesia. DOOgether was founded in 2016 and is the biggest fitness
network in Indonesia. It allows users to reserve a sport venue online using
a pay-as-you-go model, in which no membership fees are charged.
The network offers all kinds of classes, ranging from boxing and basketball
to yoga and zumba. In 2017, DOOgether won ‘Best Healthy Lifestyle Tech
Startup’ in the ASEAN Rice Bowl Startup Awards and was nominated to
represent Indonesia in the Health & Well-Being category of the World
Summit Awards. Erick Thohir, President of Inter Milan Football Club, has
joined DOOgether as an investor in 2016.

Franco Goytia / Argentina

Franco Goytia / Argentina

Franco Goytia is the founder and CEO of Ando, based in Buenos Aires,
Argentina. Founded in 2017, Ando is an on-demand delivery platform that
is transforming the way goods are delivered around cities in Latin America
by connecting retailers with local couriers who get around by bike, thereby
reducing traffic, CO2 emissions and smog. Franco Goytia was selected by
the U.S. Department of State as a Young Leader of America in 2017.

Hamed Beheshti / Iran

Hamed Beheshti / Iran

Dr. Hamed Beheshti is the co-founder and CEO of Boreal Light GmbH
based in Berlin, Germany. Boreal Light GmbH was founded in 2015 and
is dedicated to providing affordable water treatment facilities for lowincome,
off-grid communities in Africa and South America. Boreal Light
designs and manufactures low-cost, solar-powered water desalination
systems for irrigation and drinking water applications under the
WINTURE®brand. The company was the winner of the grand prize in the
European FoodNexus Challenge in 2017.

Harris Guevarra / Philippines

Harris Guevarra / Philippines

Harris Guevarra is the owner, President and CEO of Drink – a Manilabased
communications and creative agency that specialises in
sustainability. The company has been helping top corporations,
leading organisations and government agencies communicate their
sustainability stories in order to strengthen their brand and demonstrate
their impact to both internal and external stakeholders. Drink’s work has
received numerous awards in the Philippines and across Southeast Asia
since its founding in 2014. Harris himself recently completed a certificate
course on Business Sustainability Management from the University of
Cambridge‘s Institute of Sustainability Leadership.

Kenneth Nelson / Ghana

Kenneth Nelson / Ghana

Kenneth Nelson is the co-founder and CEO of QualiTrace based in
Accra, Ghana. QualiTrace was founded in 2017 and works towards
product traceability and quality assurance, as well as anti-counterfeiting.
The company provides a simple USSD mobile verification to help farmers
independently verify genuine farm inputs before purchase.
This is a technological solution to the prevalence of fake farm inputs in
the agricultural industry.
In collaboration with Developing Partners, QualiTrace provides capacity
building, training and educational support to help farmers and retailers
gain knowledge in using these farm inputs. The company also allows
consumers to trace the source of the food which they buy. QualiTrace
was a co-winner in the 2016/2017 Kosmos Innovation Center AgriTech
Challenge and is currently in incubation at Meltwater Incubator as part
of the winning package.

Lim Yuet Kim / Malaysia

Lim Yuet Kim / Malaysia

Lim Yuet Kim is the co-founder and CEO of The Picha Project based
in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The Picha Project was founded in 2016 and
empowers refugees in Malaysia through sustainable food businesses.
The company has won the Malaysia title for the Chivas Venture and was
part of e@Stanford, organised by MaGIC (Malaysia Global Innovative and
Creative Centre), as well as the Investment Ready program (organised by
Allianz and Impact Hub).

Michael Koss / Australia

Michael Koss / Australia

Michael Koss is the co-founder and CEO of Netik Quick Clinic based in
Melbourne, but operating wholly in India. Netik Quick Clinic was founded
in 2014 and provides annual healthcare subscriptions in India for 575
rupees per year (approx. USD 8). The company also connects patients
with the home delivery of medication, home collection of diagnostic
samples, priority access to hospitals and other health services. Michael
is the first foreigner to hold a leadership role in India’s peak healthcare
body, Nathealth, and has been named among India’s 100 Most Impactful
Healthcare Leaders list in both 2017 and 2018.

Mayank Chauhan / India

Mayank Chauhan / India

Mayank Chauhan is the co-founder and Director of Operations of
SenseGrow. Founded in 2014, SenseGrow is based in Mountain View
(USA) and Gurgaon (India) with a focus on Indian and APAC markets.
In this competitive world, more and more enterprises are walking a
tightrope between maximising output while minimising maintenance
costs. This eventually leads to a higher risk of unexpected breakdowns
that are expensive to fix. ioEYE platform is an AEP and Machine
Monitoring platform that senses, predicts and helps troubleshoot
potential machine failures before they happen. With this, SenseGrow
serves 400+ enterprises through its partners and has been ranked
among the Top 100 IoT companies in 2017 by IoT One.

Min Htet / Myanmar

Min Htet / Myanmar

Min Htet is the founder and CEO of Viitor Coding and Robotics School for
kids based in Yangon, Myanmar. Founded in 2017, Viitor provides an afterschool
and weekend tech-learning environment for kids. Although the
school specialises in coding, it also offers classes in robotics and electrical
engineering – all with the aim of countering the lack of tech experts and
developers, despite an increasing need for them. Min Htet has recently
been selected as one of the Top 10 young leaders from the ASEAN and
Australian region, while Viitor has been named among the Top 10 social
impact businesses for the same region.

Michael Eschmann / Switzerland

Michael Eschmann / Switzerland

Michael Eschmann is the co-founder and COO of MPower Ventures
AG based in Zurich, Switzerland. MPower Ventures AG was founded in
2017 and deploys novel solutions for off-grid areas in emerging markets
through a franchising system. Furthermore, it provides a software platform
and helps its distribution partner in structuring innovative financing
solutions. MPower Ventures has won a REPIC (Swiss Government) grant
to build two innovative power systems, was a SEIF Finalist in 2017, and is
supported by South Pole.

Nayrouz Mohamed / Egypt

Nayrouz Mohamed / Egypt

Nayrouz Talaat is the founder and CEO of Direxiona based in Cairo,
Egypt. Direxiona is a driving school for women in Egypt, taught entirely
by female driving instructors. It was founded in 2016 with the main goal
of empowering women on the road. More than 3,000 women have since
learned to drive and 50 of them have went on to become professional
driving instructors themselves. The startup has gained a huge media
coverage both within Egypt as well as in the international media, including
Reuters and CBS. Direxiona has recently been selected as one of the 10 top
startups in MINT, a local incubator which partners with EGBank.

Nghia Vu / Vietnam

Nghia Vu / Vietnam

Nghia Vu is the Vice President of Growth of IEG Education Investment
JSC. Founded in 2013, IEG operates Wow Art, a chain of 12 art centres
in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The company has seen more than 6,000
students (ranging from 4 to 12 years old) enrolled in the after-school and
weekend art classes it provides. Certified as an International Creative
Center by The Creativity and Culture Education Foundation (UK), Wow
Art has been introducing a new approach to teaching arts to children in
Vietnam. Nghia Vu is a Fulbright scholar and a member of Beta Gamma
Sigma – a global business academic honour society.

Ogunlana Olumide / Nigeria

Ogunlana Olumide / Nigeria

Ogunlana Olumide is an education consultant with more than five years
of experience in Nigeria. Early 2014, Olumide and his partner Obanor
Wezam co-founded Prepclass – an education consulting company poised
to change the way Africans learn with an array of smart, innovative
products built specifically for the African market. Prepclass has since
received several awards and accolades from local and international media
including Forbes, Fast Company, and many more. Ever since graduating
from university with a First Class degree in Engineering, Olumide has
attended and spoken at several conferences on consumerism patterns in
Africa and youth-led initiatives using technology amongst others.

Oscar Leandro / Venezuela

Oscar Leandro / Venezuela

Oscar Leandro is the co-founder and CFO of ECOEM, based in
Caracas, Venezuela. ECOEM was founded in 2014 and creates
competitive Venezuelan businesses that provide goods and services
across Latin America. ECOEM invests in industries such as agriculture,
fintech, healthtech and content services wit h the potential to disrupt
markets in countries like Argentina and Peru. Ecoem has been
mentioned by 1776 Accelerator, Singularity University, Blockchain X
and Georgetown University’s Latin American Board.

René Espinoza / Chile

René Espinoza / Chile

René Espinoza is the founder and CEO of Lazarillo Tec SpA based in
Santiago, Chile. Lazarillo was founded in 2016 and has developed a
mobile app that helps visually impaired people navigate through their
city and buildings. The company aims to create accessible spaces that
can guide and connect everyone to nearby services. Lazarillo has won
seed funding from Corfo of Chile, is supported by the Magical Startups
incubator, is part of the Acelera Beauchef accelerator program, and has
been awarded by the Zeroproject Foundation as an innovative practice
that helps people with disabilities. René was selected to be part of the
Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI 2017), sponsored by the
U.S. Department of State.

Redza Shahid Ridzuan / Malaysia

Redza Shahid Ridzuan / Malaysia

Redza Shahid Ridzuan is the co-founder and CEO of Grub Cycle based in
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Grub Cycle was founded in 2016 and is a social
supermarket dedicated to reduce food waste. With Grub Cycle, everyone
can – at a bargain price – purchase groceries and perishable food that
would typically be removed from shelves for being close to expiry or
having damaged packaging. Grub Cycle won two awards at Alliance
Bizsmart Challenge and managed to raise USD 250,000 within the span of
six months.

Samuel Bediako Waterberg / Ghana

Samuel Bediako Waterberg / Ghana

Samuel Bediako Waterberg is the co-founder and CEO of People’s
Pension Trust based in Accra, Ghana. People’s Pension Trust was
founded in 2014 and offers voluntary pension savings products to
workers in the informal sector (e.g. farmers, market women, traders),
who currently have no access to pension products. Clients can opt to
save daily, weekly or monthly with flexible contribution amounts call
using their mobile phones or cash payment. People’s Pension Trust is
supported by Dutch pension insurers and impact investors, and was
recently featured in the Pensions Africa magazine.

Samia Haimoura / Morocco

Samia Haimoura / Morocco

Samia Haimoura is the co-founder and MD of Securella GmbH based
in Hamburg, Germany. Founded in 2017, Securella is an IoT startup that
provides the fastest security response to people in danger at the push of
a button. The company aims to contribute to the UN’s global agenda by
creating safer and smarter cities.
Samia is a WEF Global Shaper from Morocco, who has picked up awards
at Shape Africa and the World Mobile Congress. She is also an alumna of
the first Vodafone Accelerator for female founders in Germany, as well as
the SheEntrepreneurs programme in Sweden.

Sharon Weir / India

Sharon Weir / India

Sharon Weir is the co-founder of 4th Wheel Social Impact based in
Mumbai, India. The mission of the organisation is to improve the way
social programs are conceptualised, implemented, monitored and
evaluated. The organisation has been incubated by Aashray Social
Ventures and, since 2015, has engaged with more than 60 research,
evaluation and communication projects for various government
departments, NGOs and corporates.

Timothy Kotin / Ghana

Timothy Kotin / Ghana

Timothy Kotin is the CEO of SuperFluid Labs, an African data analytics
firm supporting businesses in emerging markets across multiple sectors.
The company’s clients include financial institutions, off-grid solar
energy firms, agricultural lenders and small businesses – all of whom
they help to optimise their operations and manage risk by predicting
future events and customer behaviour. Timothy was previously an
IBM Research Scientist and a consultant at Dalberg, where he advised
key development actors such as the U.S. Government, the Gates
Foundation, Open Society Foundations, the Rockefeller Foundation and
the UN Foundation. He was also a Gates Scholar at the University of
Cambridge and holds a B.Sc. from Harvard University.