There is a lot of prejudice when we are talking about Africa. One of them is that there are no creative, proactive people who innovate on that continent. That just says something about people who spread those rumors. Many entrepreneurs are operating all across Africa, implementing innovations in various industries, from health, and finance, to education and renewable energy sources.
One of the countries that created a friendly environment for entrepreneurs is Namibia. Entrepreneurs in Namibia can count on numerous subventions from the government to help them start their businesses.
Namibia started backing up small businesses and entrepreneurs after they saw how impactful new technologies all over Africa were. Here is the list of the 6 most successful entrepreneurs in Namibia who profited from infrastructural, educational, and financial support they got from the government.
Sylvanie Beukes: Entrepreneur Turned into Business Consultant
Sylvanie Beukes is a new-age Namibian entrepreneur. He’s always developing new projects and actively trying to improve the quality of life in rural communities.
Highly educated and full of life and work experience, he founded a business consultant agency where he mentors other entrepreneurs in Namibia. He is well known for his book “New Money Masters: How Not to make a 100 Million”, published in 2013, where he shared some of his most successful business ideas.
Here you can see Sylvanie Beukes in his talk ‘How Not to Build a Business’, where he is talking about starting a business.
Immanuel Hango: An Entrepreneur Who Got a WHO Appreciation
Scarcity and quality of water are one of the biggest problems in Africa. Namibian civil engineer Immanuel Hango created a revolutionary method for water purification.
The easiest way to purify water is to sip diluted chlorine in it, but export and transport costs were too high to cover all of Namibia. Hango developed a solution to produce chlorine by electrolyzing salt using 100% solar energy.
His procedure helped to stop the spreading of cholera and hepatitis E in the whole Namibia and throughout African countries. Cholera is caused by bacteria that can be found in dirty water.
Watch his TED Talk in full below:
Ally Angula: Namibian Businesswoman Involved in Several Industries
Maybe the most famous Namibian entrepreneur on our list, Ally Angula, made a great impact in commercial agriculture. Although she started as an accountant, she soon switched to exploring new food processing technologies. Her plan is to cover 300 hectares of land with crops and to develop new solutions for better-quality food.
She is a Managing Director of Leap Group, a business that operates in several industries. She is also the founder of My Republik Brand, the first retail clothing brand that is completely made in Namibia.
Tammy Knott: Startup Story of Namibian Natural Skincare Products
Growing up at the edge of the Namibian desert, Tammy got familiar with the plants that grew in her surroundings. After she uncovered all the soothing effects Namibian Myrrh, Marula Oil, and Kalahari Melon Seed Oil have on the skin, she decided to create her own skincare product brand.
That is when she founded Mbiri Natural Skincare, which was one of the best business ideas in Namibia lately.
Her products are 100% natural and vegan. The best thing about her products is that she donates a small amount to local entrepreneurs for every completed purchase.
Tammy Knott is awarded the title “Lioness of Africa” with reason.
Beatha Shitemba – Quality Decors for Children
We all want that our children have the best possible nursery décor items. That was the niche that Beatha Shitemba researched before founding her company named Nels Babies.
They are proud of the fact that their products are handmade from 100% cotton and can be customized per customers’ requests.
Shitemba started her business quite accidentally, so we can say that she is not one of the typical examples of entrepreneurs in Namibia. She just saw an opportunity, a gap in the market, and grabbed it. She doesn’t have an entrepreneurship background, but that didn’t stop her.
Heinrich Hafeni Nghidipaya: Altruistic Namibian entrepreneur
Raised by his single mother, Heinrich Hafeni was impressed with how she managed to feed her family and even send all of her kids to school. She created a micro business at home, so it seems that Hafeni inherited his entrepreneurial spirit from his mother.
During his childhood, he promised himself that he will work hard and earn enough money so his mother would never have to work again. He started as a local guide, and after collecting enough experience, he founded his own travel company. Because he knew what tourists and locals were looking for, he specialized his agency in Namibia’s cultural tours.
Apart from developing his business, Hafeni realized that Namibia’s youth aren’t focused on helping their communities. They only want personal success without giving anything back to others. That’s why he partnered with Piet Carstens and several others, and they founded Swakopmund Youth with a Vision group for young leaders. Their goal was to teach young people how to be leaders and how they can take care of the people around them.
We can say that entrepreneurs in Namibia solved many problems for their communities. They also have many traits needed for someone to become successful, such as intelligence, self-confidence, perseverance, empathy, and determination.
Let their examples be your guide that anything is possible if you are persistent enough. These Namibian entrepreneurs are an inspiration to all of us who want to achieve great things.