An outspoken woman seeking to inspire, empower, give voice to the voiceless women in Zimbabwe and beyond, Josephine Kanengoni will further breathe life to her dream at the Africa Entrepreneur Forum (AEF) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Jo has been selected as one of ten African entrepreneurs to attend the AEF, and will be part of a panel discussion on the challenges facing entrepreneurs in Africa.

The AEF is a partnership between the U.S. Embassy to the African Union and blueMoon Advisory Services. It will be held on the sidelines of the 2019 African Union Summit to bring together African entrepreneurs to network and highlight their potential to African Union (AU) and American business leaders. The goal of the AEF is to create a space where African entrepreneurs can network, benchmark, seek out potential investors and provide input to the high level U.S. – Africa Trade Investment Forum regarding the opportunities that small-medium businesses can offer.

The event will provide a platform to discuss the state of entrepreneurship in Africa. The Forum will discuss opportunities available in the continent by showing a glimpse of the potential of African entrepreneurs and areas that are excelling, all in a larger effort to empower and inspire entrepreneurship in Africa.Despite the numerous opportunities that the continent harbors, it is rife with challenges for startups and investors; hence the forum will also give an overview of these challenges.

A large number of start-ups in Africa fail within three to five years from inception. The occasion will inform the African small-medium enterprises about the requirements they have to fulfill in order to attract venture capital firms, thereby ensuring the survival of their start-ups. The AEF is an opportunity to grow and elevate the African business environment making it favorable to entrepreneurs and investors.

Jo, as an entrepreneur herself, is in an ideal position to represent her fellow entrepreneurs in the continent. Her discussion will be about challenges that she has come across and is still faced with, in establishing a successful business venture in the continent. She will share the stage with the world’s most renowned business and civic leaders which include Chris Meade (US Embassy to African Union), Ms. Florie Liser (President, Corporate Council on Africa), Mary Beth Leonard (Ambassador, U.S. to the African Union), Mr. Tomi Davies (African Business Angels Network) and Adedana Ashebir (Village Capital).

Jo is fortunate to be part of both the AEF forum and the U.S. – Africa Trade Investment Forum which will be held on the 12th, a day after the AEF. She is indeed an inspiration to the Divas Inc team, Zimbabwe, Africa and the world at large.


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