Harambeans are emboldening a generation of African innovators and developing an entrepreneurial ecosystem to transform ideas into scalable solutions across Africa. What began as the “Dream on a Piece of Paper” of a coterie of young Africans gathered on the foothills of Mount Washington, united by the principles of the Harambe Declaration in 2008, has blossomed over the past thirteen years into a pan-African Alliance that is almost 400 h3.
Harambeans are diverse, competitive, and impactful in ways that inspire others and produce meaningful growth. As determined visionaries, Harambeans are excelling in their various fields, scaling ventures that are not only building Africa’s future, but the world’s. With every round of successful investment funding, Harambeans are able to channel money into their economies and continue to grow their ventures to have an even greater impact over time. When you invest in Harambeans, you invest in Africa.
Invest in Harambeans, Invest in Africa
Harambeans share a common set of values that spans cultures and countries. Our culture is what binds our entrepreneurs, investors, and partners together. The proof is in our numbers — 367 Harambeans representing 36 African countries, dozens of languages spoken, and an almost even split between male and female members.
Nigerian-American, Maya Horgan-Famodu H’17 saw an opportunity to overcome the challenge that venture firms and tech companies have when it comes to investing in Africa. She launched Ingressive to bridge the gap between investors, global corporations and African businesses, particularly within the growing African tech sector. With thousands of African businesses reached and millions of dollars invested, Famodu is on track to secure Ingressive as the key adhesive force between foreign investors, corporations and Africa’s Silicon Valleys. Since building Ingressive, she has also launched Ingressive Capital, a $5 million early stage VC focused on tech-enabled businesses across Sub-Saharan Africa.
South African, Dr William Mapham H’18 experienced the challenges facing rural health workers while working in rural Swaziland. The primary challenges were a lack of specialist knowledge and unnecessary referrals to tertiary hospitals. Understanding the value of technology and social entrepreneurship in Africa, Mapham launched the mobile app Vula as a way to strengthen the health system. Vula now reaches over 70,000 patients across several specialities and continues to expand. Initiatives like these are scaling impact, expanding diversity, and building Africa’s future in a way that is inclusive and sustainable for all.
Harambeans are culled from a competitive pool of applicants from over 335 leading universities around the world. The members of our Alliance are graduates from Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Oxford, Cape Town, Yale, and other universities that are renowned for producing brilliant leaders and inspiring entrepreneurs. The excellence of Harambeans has been recognized through hundreds of awards, including the prestigious YALI Fellowship, WEF Global Shapers, Mandela Washington Fellowship, Rhodes Scholars, and Nelson Mandela Award for Leadership, to name a few.
Babatunde Alawode H’16 has two Masters of Science degrees from MIT, one in Mechanical Engineering and the other in Material Science and Engineering. He holds a PhD from MIT in Mechanical Engineering and has won several awards including the DLab ScaleUps Fellowship and the Martin Family Fellow for Sustainability. He also won first place in the MIT-Harvard Business Case Competition. Alawode’s initial focus was material design for clean and sustainable energy, but as a self-taught programmer, he ended up pursuing video coding and edtech as career paths. Through his entrepreneurial start-up, Vectorly, he has helped tens of thousands of Africans gain access to higher learning education.
Recognized by the African Union, the Economist and the Vatican, Harambeans epitomize the can-do spirit of the new generation of African leaders. Over the last decade, Harambeans have spawned a series of tech-enabled ventures such as Andela, Flutterwave, and Yoco, which have collectively raised over $800m from Google Ventures, CRE Ventures and Accel and created more than 3500 jobs.
Adetayo Bamiduro H’15 is the Founder of MAX, a safe and affordable transport and delivery service in Lagos, Nigeria. An idea that started as a school project grew quickly into a company that attracted investors, such as Techstars and the Shell Foundation, new investors in a locally-owned West African company. MAX also sparked the interest of Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba, allowing the founders to learn first-hand how Alibaba transformed ecommerce, logistics, and payments in China over the last two decades. Harambeans both support local communities and scale their ventures to have a global impact.
Elizabeth Masiyiwa H’18 continues to reach hundreds of children and provides numerous teachers with the tools they require to provide sufficient education for their students through Simba Education, the start-up she co-founded to make a difference in early childhood education across Africa. These results make it clear that Harambeans go above and beyond with their entrepreneurial impact.