Outstanding Entrepreneurship Award

An entrepreneur (or a small group of entrepreneurs) who has shown excellence in entrepreneurship in Africa’s travel, tourism, hospitality and/or aviation industry.

1
INUA AI

[br]Reason 1: INUA AI Solutions has created global partnerships through the use of technology, where the company is providing different services to different partners such as Next Door Photos. This has greatly contributed to the Tourism sector in Africa as these partnerships are attracting a pull of Tourists across the globe.
[br]Reason 2: INUA AI is contributing to social entrepreneurship as the company is working with almost 90% workforce from socially and financially challenged areas such as Kibera, which is the biggest slum in Kenya. These individuals have, since then, been empowered and hence the improvement of livelihoods. In addittion to this, the company is always ensuring gender equality by given equal opportunities to both men and women in the society.
[br]Reason 3: INUA AI has greatly stood out in exemplary leadership from the top management. Their vision, strategic planning and effective management have been some of the most outstanding factors in the company. This also goes in handy with a great work environment stirred up from the top leaders. By this, the employees are able to greatly contribute to the company's growth and success.
[br]Website - www.inuaai.com

2
Afrigetaway

[br]Reason 1: We are a youth-owned and operated destination management company that was established in 2016. Our unique specialization lies in reshaping the conventional approach to tourism in Botswana. Our efforts align with the national marketing policy of emphasizing low volume and high value. Over the years, we have played a significant role in prompting the adoption of a national mixed marketing approach by the local destination marketing organization, especially crucial during the challenging times of the Covid-19 pandemic. This transition comes after years of cultural tourism being treated as a secondary sector, despite the fact that Botswana boasts a reputation as the ultimate luxury safari destination. Furthermore, we've developed a web application that acts as a central hub for tour operators to showcase a destination's offerings. Visitors can explore these offerings and even request a local community member to serve as an informal tour guide. This approach offers an immersive experience, allowing visitors to savor local home-cooked cuisine and fully immerse themselves in the authentic lifestyle of the community.
[br]Reason 2: Our organization's primary objectives encompass two key aspects: Firstly, we aim to foster a harmonious connection between culture and tourism. Secondly, we are dedicated to establishing innovative tourism trails across the beautiful destination of Botswana. These trails will be developed in collaboration with existing tourism operators and visionary artpreneurs from local communities, with the overarching aim of harnessing the far-reaching economic benefits that will emanate from this endeavor.
[br]Reason 3: We've established a capacity building program known as the Creative Tourism Packaging Development Initiative (CPDI). Through this initiative, we're equipping existing and emerging artpreneurs with the skills to commercialize their art while crafting an immersive tourist experience from a local perspective. Our belief is that this approach will cultivate an environment conducive to unlocking the complete potential of the creative tourism value chain. The benefits extend beyond economic gain to encompass heritage site conservation, driven by local communities, and fostering a stronger connection between tourists and the local culture. This, in turn, enhances repeat tourism, drives growth in both domestic and regional travel, and positions Botswana not solely as a safari destination, but as a rich and vibrant tapestry of its people and culture.
[br]Website - www.afrigetaway.com

3
Lizanne du Plessis: Eco Africa Digital

[br]Reason 1: Lizanne du Plessis: Illuminating Africa's Future through Entrepreneurial Excellence In the heart of Africa's travel, tourism, hospitality, and aviation industry shines a bright star who has set a new standard for entrepreneurship in the continent. Meet Lizanne du Plessis, the inspiring CEO of Eco Africa Digital, an agency that has pivoted marketing into a powerful catalyst for positive change. With a decade of passionate commitment to showcasing Africa's wonders to the world, Lizanne's impact has been exceptional, positioning her as an ideal candidate for the coveted "Outstanding Entrepreneurship Award" at the Africa Tourism Leadership Forum and Awards. Curiosity, Confidence and Visionary Leadership: Pioneering a Movement for Sustainable Tourism Lizanne's journey commenced during her Master's research in Kenya and Visionary Leadership: Pioneering a Movement for Sustainable Tourism Lizanne's journey commenced during her Master's research in Kenya including a Cum Laude Master's degree involving ecotourism and recognition as one of South Africa's 100 Brightest Young Minds by Stellenbosch University. From the picturesque landscapes of Kenya to the mountainous terrain of the Ceres Valley Lizanne's journey is one marked by big and small triumphs. She secured a Fairtrade in Tourism SA Excellence award an honor that catalyzed the birth of her digital marketing agency for tourism. Over the years accolades have continued to pour in including recognition at the World Travel Market Awards and Corporate Vision's Corporate Excellence Awards. Lizanne's visionary leadership has illuminated the path for her tourism marketing agency's captivating campaigns that resonate across African cultures and countries."
[br]Reason 2: Resilience, Persistent Work Ethic, and Team Building: A Synergistic Force for Tangible Results Lizanne's agency isn't just a team; it's a family of diverse talents united by a passion for tourism and authentic experiences. What began as a one-person endeavor has blossomed into a full-fledged digital marketing agency with a dynamic team of full-time staff and part-time consultants. This team's collective expertise has propelled Eco Africa Digital to craft remarkable success stories for clients. At the heart of their accomplishments lies a resolute focus on generating real-world outcomes. With meticulous orchestration, the agency's campaigns yield not just awareness, but also tangible bookings. Their partnership with over 75 clients over the past 10 years is a testimony to the value she has lead her team to create. Add to this the continued and persistent mindset of improved results, and it is easy to understand why their clients currently easily achieve a 450% return on online marketing investment within a few months. Lizanne's unwavering commitment to her team and her transformative leadership have cultivated a culture of collaboration, further enriching the industry as a whole. Her adeptness at building and nurturing talent has not only propelled her agency forward but has elevated the entire tourism sector.
[br]Reason 3: Adaptable and Innovative: Navigating Challenges with Courage and Creativity in the face of an ever-changing digital landscape, Lizanne's capacity to adapt and innovate stands as a testament to her entrepreneurial skill. Embracing challenges as stepping stones to growth, she has cultivated an agency that thrives on resilience and learning from experience. This adaptability was never more evident than during the COVID-19 pandemic, where she led her team to diversify their skill set, resulting in an astonishing 200% increase in turnover. Lizanne's unwavering commitment to growth and innovation extends beyond her agency. She is now a sought-after international speaker, sharing her expertise on digital marketing for tourism. Moreover, Eco Africa Digital's launch of an online platform for self-help social media content calendars and training courses speaks to Lizanne's dedication to empowering the industry at large. Conclusion: Lizanne du Plessis—A Beacon of Entrepreneurial Innovation Lizanne du Plessis is not just an entrepreneur; she's an ambassador of transformative leadership, resilience, and innovation in Africa's tourism landscape. Through Eco Africa Digital, she has woven a tapestry of inspiring campaigns that connect cultures, spark wanderlust, and contribute to the sustainable growth of African tourism. Her visionary approach, commitment to her team, and unyielding passion for progress set her apart as an ideal candidate for the "Outstanding Entrepreneurship Award" at the Africa Tourism Leadership Forum and Awards. As she continues to champion the future of African tourism Lizanne du Plessis is an entrepreneur whose innovative resilience helps to illuminate the way to a prosperous and vibrant future for the continent we hold dear."
[br]Website - www.ecoafricadigital.co.za

4
Bheki Dube - CURIOCITY

[br]Reason 1: Bheki has shown great entrepreneurship in the last 10 years developing the hotel brand - CURIOCITY. At the tender age of 21 he set his sights on becoming a hotelier drawing in his passion for photography. This has aided him in creating design-led spaces for travelers across, feeding into his pan-africanism and showcasing this aesthetic as he has grown in the industry.
[br]Reason 2: He has 8 properties in his portfolio with a team of over 60 employees. He has accomplished much of his vision already in the last 10 years and the company is only growing from strength to strength.
[br]Reason 3: He is the future of the travel industry. Being a digital nomad himself, he lives and breathes the experience he offers.
[br] Website - www.curiocity.africa

5
Ewaffe Cultural Village

[br]Reason 1: It is a new business model in Cultural Tourism Promotion in Uganda.
[br]Reason 2: It involves Local Community and gives them employment.
[br]Reason 3: It showcases the Unique Cultural norms of Uganda to the World.
[br] Website - www.ewaffe.ug

6
Yebo DRC

[br]Reason 1: Our solution: Our solution is based on the promotion of the Congolese and African destination. It focuses on a digital application for tourism on techniques for boosting destinations: communication of tourist circuits accessible from a mobile, management of reservations for accommodation, access to attractive places, mobility. This enhances the brand of tourist destinations and restores traveler confidence. Our solution also allows: the revival of the sharing economy, the circular economy, the management of income, the revival of demand, investments, among others, to implement communication on tourist destinations thinking of the near and distant future of the whole sector. Reinforcement of security measures, remediation or awareness methods on environmental protection, early detection, among others for tourism and travel actors, and for the use of tourists, tourism employees, sector hotels, travel agencies, tour operators, transport, amusement parks.
[br]Reason 2: Yebo is a marketplace that offers services and offers of tourist circuits that travelers can find from a mobile. These services allow the promotion of the Congolese and African destination, while providing all the information on tourist routes, sites, accommodation, mobility and plane tickets. We have created more than 1500 jobs and accomodate more than 1000 tourist last year!
[br]Reason 3: Yebo is a digital platform for the promotion of the Congolese and African destination. We offer tourist services and offers to travelers in the form of tourist circuits that highlight the natural wealth and African ecological biodiversity. We have been able to create more than 1,500 jobs for young people and educate local communities on the preservation of nature, our tourist wealth. We not only promote, but we preserve nature to help relaunch tourism in Africa as an important factor in the socio-economic development of the continent. We have been awarded in the DRC as Best digital startups during the Africa Digital Expo - www.africadigitalexpo.org in Kinshasa in 2022, Best startups with socio-economic impact between Canada and the DRC - www.weekcanadiennerdc.com, best digital projects by the Orange Corner incubator in the DRC - wwworangecorners.com. We are official partners of the Congolese government through the Ministry of Tourism and Foreign Affairs. Because we believe in Africa, we believe in tourism. Together, let's reinvent tourism.
[br] Website - www.yebo.fr

7
Mark von Kotze AK200 Foundation

[br]Reason 1: He is the only person I have met with the skills and thee love he has for Africa to the development of schools and clinics for people in need. His passion extends way beyond the norm. In my mind and many others that know Mark wou6say the same he is well deserved of this award.
[br]Reason 2: Skilling up of the African people that have never been given the opportunity.
[br]Reason 3: All said in the first reason.
[br] Website - www.ak200.co.uk

8
Flawless Events

[br]Reason 1: Dear Africa Tourism Leadership,

I am honored to nominate the Yoadan Tilahun, CEO and Founder of Flawless Events for the Outstanding Entrepreneurship Award. Her remarkable achievements in the travel, tourism, hospitality, and aviation industry truly exemplify excellence in entrepreneurship. Under her visionary leadership, Flawless Events has emerged as a premier event management agency, specializing in international conferences, trade fairs, expos, and corporate events. Her commitment to delivering impeccable attention to detail and translating clients' visions into unforgettable experiences sets them apart.
[br]One of the Yoadan's notable achievements is her instrumental role in professionalizing the events industry in Ethiopia. She established the events association and advised and contributed to the founding of the country's first convention bureau. Her strategic advisory services have been invaluable in promoting Ethiopia as a destination for international events. As a mentor and teacher, the Yoadan has nurtured and inspired numerous colleagues and teams over the course of 15 years. Her dedication to sharing knowledge and expertise has had a lasting impact on the industry, fostering a culture of growth and excellence. Flawless Events' reach extends beyond Ethiopia. Under the her leadership, the company has established a strong presence in multiple countries, including the United States, Rwanda, and Ethiopia. Her ability to seamlessly operate in international markets and deliver exceptional events across the globe is a testament to her leadership and strategic acumen. During the challenging times of the pandemic, the Yoadan played a vital role in advising cautious recommendations to the government, contributing to the safe reopening of the industry. Her guidance ensured the survival of not only Flawless Events but also the entire value chain of organizations associated with the industry. In her pursuit of international standards and competitiveness, Yoadan has consistently invested in the value chain organization. By bringing in high-quality materials and resources, they have elevated the industry and ensured that Ethiopia remain as a prime destination and Flawless Events at the forefront of delivering exceptional experiences.
[br]In conclusion, the CEO and Founder of Flawless Events is truly deserving of the Africa Tourism Leadership's Outstanding Entrepreneurship Award. Her achievements in professionalizing the events industry, her mentorship and leadership, her international expansion, and her contributions during challenging times exemplify her exceptional entrepreneurship in the travel, tourism, hospitality, and aviation sector. Thank you for considering this nomination, and I am confident that recognizing her remarkable achievements will inspire others in the industry to strive for excellence.

Sincerely, Manahat Thomas
[br] Website - www.flawlessevents.net

9
David Sehemba Batur

[br]Reason 1: Founded SEHEMBZ Travels in 2013 at a young age of 26 and has grown it to one of the leading travel agencies in Nigeria.
[br]Reason 2: Has a proven track record of influencing travel and tourism policies in Nigeria through his role as the Publicity Relations Officer of the National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies (Abuja).
[br]Reason 3: Has trained and mentored well over 30 entrepreneurs in the travel industry who now own their businesses across Nigeria.
[br] Website - www.sehembztravels.com