Favorites quotes from the #LionessesofAfrica 2017 Annual conference

Hi Everyone

Apologies for the silence on my part. These last few months have been rather full…But I also believe I was definitely suffering from writers’ block (with 36 draft posts and none quite complete…lol!).  I decided to stop hiding and share with you one of the highlights of my year as we are preparing to bid farewell to #2017: I attended the #LionessesofAfricaconference2017 in September!

Melanie Hawkens (founder of Lionesses of Africa)

I have been stalking Lionesses of Africa (LoA) for like EVER…so I was over the moon and nearly fell off my chair when I received the invitation to their 2017 conference. Not attending was not an option, so I re-arranged my schedule at work and cleared the day so I could attend. Looking back, it was probably one of the best investment of my time this year. There is just something about being around a group of African women on a mission to improving their continent through their businesses. Their passion, determination, grace, resilience, strength and beauty: how can one not be inspired? There are loads I could probably say but decided to share with you some of the favourites quotes and pictures of the event.

A panel of women in the finance space. From left to right: Polo Leteka (IDF Capital) , Andrea Bohmer (KNF Ventures and Knife Capital), Juliana Rotish (Africa Technologies Ventures), Puti Mahanyele (Sigma Capital)


” A lack of belief in themselves is what is holding women back” M. Hawkens

“A community of women” M. Hawkens

“There is nothing more beautiful than steel manufacturing” M. Kyster

“shy about our achievements because we are afraid to fail” M. Kyster

LoA picture 1

“We need to teach our girls to be brave” M. Kyster

“You can’t manage what you can’t measure” J. Rotish

“Embrace who you are” J. Rotish


LoA picture 2
A panel of women in male dominated sectors. From left to right: Melanie Hawken (Lionesses of Africa), Kofo Akinkugbe (Secure ID), Kate Quartey-Papafio (ReRoy Cables), Mayleen Kyster (Africa Steel Holdings), Ally Angula (Leap Namibia Group), Flora Mutahi (Melvin Mash Intentional & Manufacturers Association Kenya)


“With all due respect sir, if my husband had come to ask for a loan…would you have asked him to  come see me for a loan” T. Durotoye

“Let’s start by celebrating the men who support us” T. Dorotoye

“I wanted to build up a world-class make-up brand from Africa and stuck to my vision” T. Durotoye

“Tell the African stories” T. Durotoye


LoA picture 4
Tara Fela-Durotoye (House of Tara) being the boss that she is!


“I strongly believe in a better Africa where Africans are integral to solving Africa’s problems” C. Ukonu

“If not you, who…If not now, when?” V. Shaba

“It is important to understand what type of financing you are looking for”


“The world’s best councillors are those who have been healed themselves” R. Droganis

“You just need to worry about your now…God brings people to you when you are ready” R. Droganis

“We have a 100 year plan” V. Shaba

“I don’t know what is unsocial about entrepreneurship”

LoA Picture 5
The ever so beautiful & business mogul Phuti Mahanyele

“Technology is just a means to an end” J. Rotish

“First of all, you are enough” J. Rotish

“Someone once told me that the only reason you got invited to this high profile conference is because you are a black woman in tech” J. Rotish

“You do not need to wait for some people to validate your value” J. Rotish


“I knew as I was meeting the MD of the bank that I was not going to ask for 0.5 millions, I asked for 20 millions loan instead…and I repaid it fully” T. Durotoye

 A young lady far wiser beyond her years…Currently a student but aspiring entrepreneur, she decided to stalk Melanie & scored a ticket to expand her network as she refines her business idea #Congogirlmagic.

You can have a more detailed summary of the event here. I hope you enjoyed this post & wishing you the best with these last few productive days before the festive season



P.S: Please note that credit for most of the pictures (except the last one) goes to Lionesses of Africa. See more pictures here


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