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MELVYN LUBEGA, H’16

Creating Opportunities for Africans through Business Education
Many small to medium sized businesses, and especially those in Africa, did not have the capabilities to provide sufficient employee training programs. As an entrepreneur and business consultant, Melvyn Lubega knew that providing affordable access to training programs would create opportunities for Africans and serve as an equalizer for businesses both on the continent and internationally. By co-founding Go1, he leveraged technology and provided an elearning platform as a viable solution.

“Learning and education in its truest sense is the most powerful tool for a human to develop.”

Investing in Education

THE CHALLENGE. The relationship between training and work performance is well supported by research, yet offering effective training within an organization can be prohibitively expensive. This is particularly the case for small to medium sized businesses who may not have large Learning and Development budgets and expertise. The challenge is further exacerbated in countries where businesses face high risk situations, such as the economic and social barriers prevalent within many African countries. A 2017 report from Africa’s Pulse found that finding a skilled workforce was the most binding constraint to their business. In addition to regular education and training requirements typical for any business, African businesses were also contending with a workforce that needed baseline education and training.

THE PROCESS. During his undergraduate, Lubega co-founded an investment management company focused on providing finance to small and medium sized businesses. Through this, he advised and worked with many entrepreneurs. It became apparent to him that training staff can be exceedingly difficult and costly, even more so within smaller businesses. Lubega moved on to advising large corporations and organizations with the Boston Consulting Group and his experiences there reaffirmed this. As a consultant, he realized that many of the challenges he were brought on to address often stemmed from people within the organization not being adequately upskilled and developed.

It was these formative experiences and the challenge of quality versus quantity of experience that led Lubega to focus on enterprise training and development. As a Rhodes Scholar and during his studies in Educational Learning and Technology at the University of Oxford, he co-founded Go1 with a group of his peers to form a solution that would lower the barrier to world class training through an easy to use and affordable e-learning training system. Once registered on Go1, clients also have the option of selecting existing training content via the platform’s marketplace and integrating it into their staff members’ training portal. By providing affordable access to training courses, Go1 enables small to medium sized businesses, both in Africa and beyond, to have the same opportunities for training staff as larger firms.

THE RESULT. Go1’s product (first called Aduro) was acknowledged by eLearning as the best new-learning management system out of 625 systems globally in 2014, and at that time had already earned over $1m in revenue. After submitting an application to Y-Combinator accelerator, Go1 was accepted into the 2015 Summer program, triggering the worldwide expansion of the organization with offices opening across the world in The United States, South Africa, Vietnam, The United Kingdom, and Malaysia. The company now offers 1000+ courses on their platform. In 2018, Go1 was named one of the top 20 outstanding Australian “Businesses of Tomorrow”, from 200 businesses selected by Westpac for 2018 and also ranked 12th on LinkedIn’s annual Top 25 Startups list. Established as a global business leader, Go1 continues to grow its client base and roster of educational tools year over year.

Source: go1.com

LEARN MORE ABOUT GO1

Go1 offers thousands of courses and learning content covering everything from compliance, professional development, leadership, management and more. The Go1 platform allows you to manage and track and even customize training and progress. Whether it’s personal development, compliance, onboarding or selling courses – Go1 has got you covered!

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INVESTING IN EDUCATION, INVESTING IN AFRICA

ABOUT MELVYN LUBEGA

Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, and of Ugandan origin, Melvyn Lubega always had a thirst for learning. He won scholarships for his secondary and tertiary education at St John’s College, University of Cape Town and Oxford. He studied actuarial science at the UCT, graduating with a distinction in statistics, and was awarded fellowship to the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation and was named one of Forbes 30 Under 30.

He held prominent positions in investment banking and business consulting, such being the first associate in Sub Saharan Africa for the Boston Consulting Group. He has also been at the helm of a number of startups, including the company Go1, a venture that unites training content through an easy-to-use online platform. The Go1 business model is premised on making world-class training and learning affordable for all organizations. Despite having initial international success outside of Africa, it is important to Lubega that he helps build the business in Africa where he believes the developmental impact can be greatest. For Lubega, building and managing the teams in Johannesburg and Lagos were only the beginning, with Go1 now providing educational and training programs to businesses around the globe.

“I believe that by enabling African technologies to scale and global technologies to be localized in an African context I will contribute to the development of Africa and African technology entrepreneurship.”

Go1 is expanding its presence in the global market, aiming to serve as the world’s go-to resource for professional elearning. As an enabler and through his achievements, Lubega sees himself not only as an entrepreneur developing innovative technology but also as a supporter of other entrepreneurs through mentorship, finance, and access to networks.

I AM A HARAMBEAN

Melvyn Lubega sees Harambeans as an active and dynamic ecosystem which creates an enabling environment for entrepreneurial excellence:

“Being a Harambean is more than once off recognition of affiliation. It entails meaningful engagement and exploring areas of collaboration with fellow Harambeans. The alliance is a community of young Africans who, through taking action, want to be the change.
Each Harambean is at a different stage as entrepreneurs and many have been where I am in my journey. Through Harambe, I will be part of a community of peers and mentors from whom I can learn greatly. This together with the opportunities afforded to Harambeans will help me grow as a high impact entrepreneur.”