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Insight & Analysis - August 12, 2022

5 Rising African Female Founders You Need to Know in 2022

The African business space has seen an upsurge in the number of female founders. This reveals the potential female entrepreneurs have to offer the continent. Despite their innovative ideas, female founders found it challenging to access investment for their businesses.

As of last year, only 6.5% of investment went to female-owned tech startups. Most of it went to female tech founders from Kenya. The country accounts for 41% of the female-generated funds. This is down compared to the 61% recorded in 2019.

Here are some African female founders you should watch out for on the continent.

Thato Schermer and Nonhlanhla Sitole


Thato Schermer is the founder of Zoie Health Technologies. She founded the company with Nonhlanhla Sitole, a PhD holder in Molecular and Cellular Biology.

Zoie is a digital health and wellness platform for women. It provides virtual medical consultations, contraceptive delivery subscriptions, and community chat for African women. By leveraging technology, healthcare services are available to millions of women worldwide. 

Neema Iyer

Source: Stanford PACS

She is the founder of the Uganda startup Pollicy. The platform leverages data to create a better life experience for women. 

Iyer does this by gathering data from data scientists, creatives, academics, and private companies. This way, she brings about a socio-change in the country.

Pollicy also has a game called ‘’Digital safe-tea’’. The game educates women on how to handle online violence. The platform is on a mission to improve how data is seen and used to improve society.


5 Rising African Female Founders in 2022

Diarra Boussou

Source: Inspire More

Through innovation, the mathematician turned entrepreneur blended mathematics techniques with fashion design ideas to start her business: Diarrablu. She uses graphs and geometric transformations to form unique prints.

Using algorithms makes it possible for the business to produce thousands of prints based on customer polls and engagement. This structure helps the business minimise waste and save more. This increased the company’s revenue in 2020 by 900%, 

Maya Horgan Famodu

African female founders
Source: Startup Grind

Getting investment in Africa is not an easy task. Also, most of the investment comes from outside of the continent. Famodu is changing this narrative through her company, Ingressive Capital, a Lagos-based investment company.

It supports African-based businesses at the pre-seed level. Some of the company’s investments include Paystack, Bamboo, Tizeti and 54gene. These include countries such as Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, and Egypt, with about 40% female-founded or co-founded.

Marie-Alix de Putter

African female founders
Source: Marie-Alix de Putter

Marie-Alix de Putter is a serial founder and entrepreneur who loves promoting African female entrepreneurs. She co-founded The Sisters Invest with Cathye Moukoko, an international network of female business angels.

She is the founder of Hemley Productions, a content media company. The company aims to put females from all walks of life and Africa at the centre of every story.


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