Why African Entrepreneurship Is Booming: Ndubuisi Ekekwe, Founder, African Institution of Technology

Last month, I visited my village of Ovim in Southeastern Nigeria. I met a painter who also manufactures the paint he uses for his work. According to him, his business nearly collapsed early in the year when he could not access the foreign exchange market to import the raw materials required for his paint production. At that time, the Nigerian central bank was running a currency control regime which stifled the importation of goods for small businesses.

But despite these challenges, the painter came up with new ideas to keep his business going. He created a new type of paint, from non-toxic materials, using materials sourced locally. The new paint has no smell and dries within minutes of application. I was impressed. I invested in his business and told him that people like him are the future for Africa.

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