Building Africa’s Future: Welcoming the 16th Class of Harambeans

On April 16 2023, African innovators gathered in the Gold Room at the Mount Washington Hotel in Bretton Woods to sign the Harambeans Declaration and officially became Harambeans. In so doing they reaffirmed our pledge “to work together as one to pursue the social, political and economic development of Africa and fulfill the dream of our generation.”

The 18 Harambeans representing the 16th Class were culled from 5 794 applications and 159 nominations. 48 Harambeans, from as far back as Mr Beshawred from the Class of 2008, were part of the selection and interview process. The 16th Class represents eight African countries including Nigeria, South Africa and Kenya and they have collectively raised more than $253 million. The 5 women and 13 men of the 2023 class will expand our Pan-African ecosystem and strengthen our collective ability to build Africa’s future.

The new Harambeans are spearheading ventures in sectors critical to Africa’s prosperity, working within fintech, clean tech & AI, enterprise and HR, and consumer & logistics adding to the diversity and richness of the Harambean Alliance. Meet our 16th Class of Harambeans.


Kiiru Muhoya H’23, Kenyan founder of Fingo Africa who is building a youth-focused Pan-African digital bank.

Mina Shahid H’23, Egyptian co-founder of Numida, a start-up that provides working capital loans to semi-formal, cash-based African micro and small businesses through a mobile app.

Hilda Moraa H’23, Kenyan ****founder of Pezesha, a fintech enabling a digital lending infrastructure for access to working capital for SMEs in Africa.

Katlego Maphai H23, South African co-founder of Yoco, a platform that offers products in payments, software credit and software, which enables the self-employed to thrive.

Nael Hailemariam H’23, Ethiopian co-founder of Chapa, an online payment gateway that enables businesses to accept digital payments from customers worldwide.

Steve Biko  H’23 Kenyan co-founder of Zanifu, a company providing inventory financing for SME’s in the consumer goods supply chain.


Matthey Bray H’23, South African co-founder of Brayfoil, a company that is pioneering the future of offshore wind – larger turbines & lower costs of energy through biomimetic designed turbine blades that adapt like bird’s wings.

Frank Williams H’23, Nigerian is the co-founder of Topset, which helps African students jump 1-3 letter grades per semester through their platform of online tutors, supercharged by learning theory and AI.

Spencer Horne H’23, South African founder of Cloudline, a company building a network of autonomous, carbon emission-free airships that transform the way we deliver goods and services to the world.

Janet Sawari H’23, Zimbabwean co-founder of The AI Review, a hard-tech innovation and research lab.


Adetola Onayemi H’23, Nigerian co-founder of Norebase, a digital platform for anyone to start, scale and maintain a company in any African country.

Caroline van der Merwe H’23, South African co-founder of Jem, a company that allows employers to deliver HR services and critical information to and from employees via WhatsApp at any scale.

Paul Kimani H’23, Kenyan founder of Workpay, a company offering payroll and benefits with embedded finance for SMBs in Africa.

Yusha Davidson H’23, South African co-founder of BriefCo, a company providing software to assist African law firms of any size to operate more efficiently and effectively.


Ismael Belkhayat H’23, Moroccan co-founder of Chari, a company that is helping local, independent and traditional stores to survive the modern trade competition.

Charles Sekwalor H’23, Ghanaian founder of Movemeback, Africa’s global connector, connecting Africa’s top talent across the globe to opportunities, people, intelligence and resources on the continent at scale.

Ifeoluwa Dare-Johnson H’23, Nigerian founder of Healthtracka, a company making medical diagnostics accessible and convenient with at-home lab testing via its consumer platform, API, and doctor’s portal.

Esther Nwachukwu H’23, Nigerian co-founder of Nadra Safiri (Nigeria), the no 1 wellness destination for conscious consumers.


“Our newest Harambeans will undoubtedly face a unique set of challenges and opportunities. Yet, I am confident that they will face them with the servant leadership, enduring optimism and deliberate audacity characteristic of every Associate of our Alliance,” said Harambeans Founder, Okendo Lewis-Gayle.

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