Melissa Bime, a Cameroonian health-tech entrepreneur has been awarded the sum of $25,000 for winning the Anzisha Prize with her innovation, INFIUSS, an online blood bank and digital supply chain solution for local hospitals to access blood.
Organized by the African Leadership Academy (ALA) in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation, the Anzisha Prize recognizes Africa’s most innovative social and business entrepreneurs under the age of 22.
Melissa Bime, 22, was awarded the $25,000 grand prize for her INFIUSS platform, which currently serves 23 hospitals in Cameroon, ensuring the safety of their lives when and where they need it.
“Today, I stand here to represent every young girl out there that just has her dreams. I stand here to represent this amazing group of entrepreneurs that I am a part of. With these people, the future of Africa is very bright. We are going to change this continent,” Melissa Bime said, accepting the prize at the Awards gala.
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Alhaji Siraj Bah, an 18-year-old Sierra Leonean, was the first runner-up and was awarded ($15,000). His company produces paper bags and cooking briquettes. Ugandan Joan Nalubega, 21, was named second runner-up and received $12,500 – for her mosquito repellent soap.
The winners were selected from a group of 20 finalists, who participated in a 10-day accelerator prior to pitching their businesses to the Anzisha panel of judges. Each finalist received US$2,500.
“We are proud of all 20 finalists and are excited to see two young and dynamic women taking home top prizes. Their contributions will continue to impact their countries and they are role models for other young women across the continent. They are demonstrating how to turn obstacles into opportunities that create value and jobs for others,” said Koffi Assouan, programme manager at the Mastercard Foundation.
Applications for the next cycle of the Anzisha Prize will open on February 15, 2019.
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