By Tapiwa Matthew Mutisi
Just recently, after being selected by the World Economic Forum to join its Young Global Leaders Class of 2018, Natalie Jabangwe, Ecocash CEO, is yet again amongst the three Zimbabwean business executives and entrepreneurs who have been nominated for the All Africa Business Leaders Awards (AABLA), established to honour business excellence among business leaders from around the continent.
With over 10 years of experience in FinTech, she began her career as a software engineer, eventually moving to Investment banking and retail banking sectors, across the EMEA region. Prior to joining EcoCash, she was a Senior Mobile Financial Services Consultant at a Fortune 500 company, NCR Corporation, where she developed NCR’s digital financial service strategy across 52 countries.
The other nominees are Collen Tapfumaneyi, the chief executive officer of Escrow Group; Divine Ndhlukula, the founder and managing director of Securico Security Services.
The awards ceremony is held annually by the AABLA in partnership with African television network CNBC Africa.
The Zimbabwean trio was announced as finalists for the southern region at a gala dinner held in Johannesburg, South Africa, on September 20.
The AABLA grand finale to crown the All Africa winners in the particular categories will be held at an exclusive gala dinner next month.
“Considering the history and prestige of the awards, as well as the quality of previous winners, I was both shocked and excited at the same time to have been recognised at such a grand stage. Representing my country on such a platform made me feel proud to be Zimbabwean,” Tapfumaneyi commented.
“There is no better feeling than to realise your effort and toil is recognised. The recognition is motivating, not only to me personally, but my team at the Escrow Group whose hard work and commitment has culminated in this award.”
Tapfumaneyi is a finalist for the Entrepreneur of the Year award, Jabangwe has been nominated for the Young Business Leader of the Year while Ndhlukula is vying for the Businesswoman of the Year.
Tapfumaneyi was behind the creation of the country’s first mobile trading platform C-Trade allowing for direct trading from investors, and in 2016 helped create Zimbabwe’s second securities exchange, the Financial Securities Exchange (Private) Limited (FINSEC).
Divine Ndhlukula is recognised for growing Securico into one of the leading security services providers in Zimbabwe, which has operated for the past 18 years. She was appointed the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce president in June last year, becoming the second woman in the history of the business association to be appointed to that position.