Beatrice graduated from LSE in 2019 with a MSc in Local Economic Development. She has since worked as a researcher for the NHS, using budget lines to create better efficiency at primary care centres. From there, she worked for a health tech start up that digitises patient records in Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana and Pakistan. She has consequently fallen in love with early stage start-ups, with a real passion for user research and product development. Having been born in Belgium, grown up in Malawi and the UK, and settled in Kenya, she considers herself a citizen of the world. An avid long-distance walker, she is always on the look out for the next trail!
City girl turned avid explorer, Ludo has been adventure seeking in Kenya since she got conveniently “stuck” in Nairobi during the covid lockdown. This is when she decided to leave her corporate job behind and listen to her entrepreneurial spirit calling. A communications professional specialised in digital storytelling and delivering high-impact integrated campaigns, Ludo has led multiple projects across various business areas ranging from PR, social media, and corporate communications to operations and supply chain values for her previous employers: Dolce&Gabbana and De Beers. Fast forward to today, and you will find Ludo building companies that implement sustainable solutions, drive innovation across digital channels, and creatively tell brand stories… all while planning her future trips with friends and family and collecting quirky mementos along the way (with a particular obsession toward herbs and spices, jewellery, and art!)
Lilian is a seasoned financial analyst and accountant with over 5 years of experience working in the finance sector, specifically within start-ups. She has a strong belief in the potential of start-ups to drive growth in Africa and is committed to using her skills and expertise to contribute to this vision. In her spare time, Lilian is pursuing her CFA designation, a testament to her dedication to continued learning and professional development. She is also an avid reader, with a particular interest in African literature, showcasing her passion for the continent and its culture.
With five years of professional background in procurement, store management and stock control, Rachel holds a Bachelor's degree in Supply Chain Management. In her previous role, she played a pivotal part in ensuring her hotel employeer outperformed rivals by strategically attaining optimal quality, pricing, and terms from suppliers. Demonstrating proficiency in planning, interdepartmental coordination, budgeting, and record-keeping, she maintains a drive to expand her expertise in supply chain management. Outside of her professional sphere, she finds enjoyment in action-packed movies and spending quality time with her family and friends. Hailing from Mombasa, her upbringing instilled a profound passion for hospitality at an early age, motivating her to effect positive changes, particularly in environmental aspects. Her love for exploration translates into travel, seeking new encounters, experiences, and interactions. A fervent football enthusiast, she focuses on maintaining physical fitness through consistent workouts, while also indulging in reading as a pastime.
Originally from Canada, Jacob has been living in Africa for 8 years. His career has spanned multiple roles from business development, operations, and executive management. Prior to joining Purple Elephant Ventures he ran a food delivery startup in Nairobi, eventually merging it into a successful new venture with Kenya’s largest restaurant chain. Jacob has a passion for travel, having visited over 70 countries over the years. He completed his undergraduate degree in Political Science at Queens University before moving to Singapore to earn an MBA from Nanyang Business School.
Kevin is a software product leader with 17 years experience in Product and Business Development for rapidly scaling start ups in Europe, the Americas and Africa. Over the years he has gained extensive expertise in building complex software on web & mobile for B2B and B2C use cases. Since he came to Kenya in 2017, he has lead Product at several startups including Africa’s Talking, Sendy and recently Wasoko. Kevin is an avid outdoorsman and adventurer and goes out to explore whenever he can find the time. He lives in Nairobi with his wife & two daughters.
Lucille is a mindful but competitive go getter. Having graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Finance, she has worked with start ups wearing several hats: accountant, administrator and is now spreading her wings even further. She identifies herself as a forever student and is pursuing a CPA and eventually hopes to pursue her Master's. Considered an introvert, she spends most of her time with family and a small circle of friends. She believes it's everyone's responsibility to take care of the environment and is a strong advocate for proper waste disposal.
Mercy is a Content and Community Builder at Nomad Africa, a premieretravel company. She is passionate about travel and storytelling, bringing youcloser to Africa and its rich tapestry of travel opportunities. Mercy is skilled atcreating engaging and informative content that showcases the best of Africa,from its untamed wildlife to its iconic landmarks and hidden gems. She iscommitted to helping the company to achieve its mission of providingtravelers with the best personalized African experience.
Mwangi was born and raised in Kenya up until 18 when he left for Canada to pursue an education and figure his way through life as a young adult. He spent 13 years in Canada where he completed a business degree from the Sobeys School of Business in Nova Scotia and thereafter climbed the corporate ladder in fortune 500 companies like Hewlett Packard (HP) and Xerox Corp with a main focus in IT sales. A political science minor in University sparked a strong interest in the circular relationship between trade, technology, economics, politics and security which over time led him into consulting for the Canadian Government, NGO’s, IGO’s and private sector players focused on projects and investments in countries such as Haiti, Kenya, Ivory Coast, Zimbabwe, Somalia and Colombia. These experiences planted a seed for his return home after 13 years with the mission to start up a manufacturing business focused on environmentally friendly food packaging solutions, an industry that had seen minimal innovation for decades and a broader vision of job creation at scale. He bootstrapped the business into a regional player with branches in Uganda and Tanzania as well as strategic distributors all the way into Central Africa. His strongest passion remains the socio - economic empowerment of communities on the African continent through commerce and conservation.
Doris never shies away from making bold decisions. Her passion and deep desire to make travel affordable and accessible to everyone saw her switch careers from actuarial science & finance to travel & tourism seven years ago. She founded Afro Haven Vacations in 2015 to provide affordable travel solutions by connecting travelers to holiday homes, cottages, and apartments. Through her leadership, the company grew from managing one cottage in Diani to marketing over fifty vacation properties countrywide. A passionate digital marketing strategist, Doris has trained close to 100 SMEs under the Boost With Facebook training program and is a holder of Facebook Media Planning and Media Buying Certifications. Apart from her Bsc in Actuarial Science degree, Doris holds an ACCA Certification from Strathmore University. Doris enjoys traveling the world, with her favorite destination being the Kalahari sand dunes in Swakopmund, Namibia, where sand and sea meet, literally!
Eric is passionate about innovation towards helping people and businesses drive change toward vibrant communities, strong economies, and sustainable environments. He attributes his track record to successful creative concept development and innovative methodologies in generating impactful solutions. Before joining PEV Eric worked as a Growth Partner at Ongoza where he worked with various startups providing business development support. Before he joined Ongoza, he worked as an Innovation Officer for Wildlife at Wild Wide Fund Kenya, responsible for supporting the WWF Kenya Innovation Program 'PandaLabs' in running various innovative solutions towards helping both people and nature. Eric is a huge 4x4 car sports and Manchester United fan matched with interest in the financial markets during his recreational time. Eric holds an MSc in Innovation & Entrepreneurship from Warwick University.
Duke is a startup and marketing enthusias with close to half a decade’s experience in the startup space. He launched his career at the Kenya Tourism Board as an intern and later did a stint at Lakehub Incubator, learning the first principles of startup building. His last role was at Philmed, a pharmaceutical startup disrupting the distribution of pharmaceutical products. Here he was part of the team that executed on expanding and scaling the company to seven new territories doing user research and monitoring the effects of tweaks aimed at meeting customer needs. He is passionate about creating sustainable market-based solutions. Camping in some remote part lights his soul on fire!
Ben fell in love with Africa in 2001, when he moved to Ghana to work at the Ghanaian Ministry of Justice. Since then, Ben has accumulated eighteen years of experience investing in, founding, growing and managing companies and non-profits across Africa. Ben founded and led Journalists for Human Rights (now Canada’s largest media development NGO) and Newsana Incorporated (a news aggregation platform); more recently spent nearly four years as Senior Partner at AHL Venture Partners, one of Africa’s largest early stage investors. In this role Ben ran AHL’s Nairobi office and oversaw AHL’s East and Southern African portfolio; notably, Ben led an investment and subsequent exit in Twiga Foods that won the 2019 ‘Exit of the Year’ award from the East Africa Private Equity and Venture Capital Association. Ben is also the Recipient of Canada’s Meritorious Service Medal (MSM) one of Canada’s highest civilian honours, winner of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 Award and the Queen’s University Alumni Humanitarian Award. Ben has a MSc from the London School of Economics.
Azam Samanani was born and raised in North America into an entrepreneurial family and has been involved in business since the age of 12. He graduated from Princeton University, completed post graduate training at Harvard Law School, and attended executive education with Harvard and London Business Schools. He began his career in the US and moved to Africa in 2007 where he’s been ever since. He’s worked in both large corporations and startups across the spectrum including technology, litigation, real estate development, security, FMCG, restaurants, and professional services. Under his leadership, businesses have won numerous awards including Licensee of the Year, KPMG Top 100, and East African SuperBrand. He is currently CEO of The KCH Group, a business focused on building better teams through recruitment, better people through coaching and training, and better business performance through practical and hands on consulting. Outside of his family, his real passion is keynote speaking and teaching, which he has been doing for the last 30 years.
Born and raised in Mombasa on the Kenyan coast, Mikul Shah is a foodie, travel enthusiast, angel investor and serial entrepreneur with over 20 years experience in mature and emerging markets. In 2010, having relocated from London to Nairobi, he founded the award-winning restaurant discovery portal, EatOut. The brand has since grown to encompass some of the largest food festivals in the region, as well as assets in print and digital media. He is passionate about the role of technology for business in Africa and has served on the advisory boards of Africa Technology Ventures, Blankets & Wine, Safaricom SPARK Fund & UAP Old Mutual. After seeing a significant gap in the market, Mikul founded Nomad magazine in 2017 with the mission to promote regional and domestic tourism in Africa, through high quality content. Mikul is the recipient of the Business Daily Top 40 under 40 Award and the Kenya Tourism Award for ICT. He has a BSc from the University of Manchester and is an alumni of the Stanford GSB Seed program in East Africa.
Carol is an enthusiastic travel specialist with extensive experience in coordinating travel throughout East Africa for thousands of youth, families and people from all walks of life enabling them to discover unparalleled experiences and make life changing memories. Over her many years of experience, Carol has coordinated over 2,500 trips for approximately 11,000 travelers including many high level celebrities from all over the world. In her previous role, Carol was responsible for the entire booking process ensuring that travel itineraries were well planned and executed so that all travelers experienced world class service. She holds a master’s degree in strategic management from USIU-Africa and is passionate about nature and conservation.
Atiya is an entrepreneur, avid hiker and passionate about Africa. Her life’s aspiration is to empower businesses in Africa to harness technology and thrive in an ever-more digital world.
Born in Kenya, Atiya co-founded and later led a Fintech business Kava for 7 years and has 18 years of being trusted advisor to senior executives in her capacity as Strategy Director at ATOM tdf - the first boutique Brand agency in Kenya. She brings on board a fresh perspective, and hands-on experience in driving strategy, implementation, and commercializing Greenfield digital & non-digital product projects.
As one of ATOM’s principal shareholders and Strategist, she had the privileged of innovating tailor-made strategic solutions for some of Africa’s most prolific brands in industries spanning Banking, Insurance, FMCG, Hospitality, Legal, Real-Estate, Manufacturing, Security, Governmental and Non-profit Agencies in Eastern and Southern Africa.
Her more than twenty-year career has conceived many firsts. They include developing brand strategy for the largest bank by balance sheet on its first venture out of Kenya, operationalisation of Somalia’s first branded commercial bank, building the Kenya’s first fully digital insurance distribution platform, spearheading the first digital savings products by a Fintech in Kenya, and establishing Kenya’s first KSH 1.5B a month universal financial services agency, to name just a few.
Born at the foothills of Mt Kenya and raised in Nairobi. Kelvin is a builder at heart, a serial entrepreneur, and loves discovering hidden great travel experiences, he calls it “shopping for experiences”. He most recently founded his own tech company that had raised funding called BidiiBuild which aimed to digitize construction sites “Mjengo” enabling builders/contractors to monitor project costs and timelines remotely. He then went to work on tackling problems utilizing tech in industries ranging from home financing, policy, user research, and even curly hair stylists! He is passionate about how digital products can be utilized to solve big problems. You can find him having a great coffee in search of an insightful conversation, on his podcast, or on some hidden trail shopping for a new adventure;-)
Caroline is a City girl who loves to be referred to by her African cultural name ‘Wairimu’, which means ‘one who originates from the land of giants’. True to her name, she has continuously achieved giant goals and keeps that spirit of ‘The Great’ alive and active. Wairimu is a PMP and CPA-k who holds a BSc Economics. She is a passionate PM and builder who meets deliverables and will bring any dead/stalled project back to life.
Her mission is to positively impact & improve people's lives so that they all reach their full potential. Her career, passion, and interests are focused on social impact initiatives. Her experience spans; consulting with The World Bank to improve the Gig Economy sector, consulting on a GIZ-funded project to improve healthcare in East Africa, Working with Mr. Green Africa to change the perception of waste and improve the Circular Economy sector, and working at Uber to launch and grow UberEats operations in Kenya. Wairimu loves people, life, nature, adventure, and smiling. “Nothing beats a good smile. My smile is my best make-up, it increases my face value by the day”, she says. You will primarily meet her wearing her signature smile which she believes is free therapy and makes her younger.
Ann is a BSC Tourism Management graduate from Strathmore University. She is passionate about all things sustainability, tourism and social innovation around our environment. She launched her career at Lufthansa City Centre where she coordinated travel logistics for corporate clients and groups to ensure their seamless travel experience. Shen then worked with early stage startups, including Rose Adventures and Where to Stay East Africa to onboard different properties and services onto their digital platform and she oversaw all travel arrangements and created package tours as an operation specialist. Prior to joining Nomad Africa, she partnered with The Copy Cat Group to facilitate the automation of cash processes for their FSI clients including ABSA Bank, KCB and Stanbic Bank where she ensured their seamless transition to using their self-serving machines across different branches for their employees and clients. She is a huge F1 fan with a matched interest in its race travel logistics.
Jan has spent most of the last 20 years working as an investment banker with Credit Suisse, Standard Bank (UK and Nigeria) and Dyer and Blair (Kenya). He went on to start Simbi Capital which raised over $100M for Africa based projects.
Over the last four years Jan has co-founded and invested in a string of companies across Africa focused on the growing lower middle mass market, including a digital lending platform in Kenya, a gym and laundromat chain in Nigeria, mass housing in Sierra Leone and agriculture in Ghana. His exits to date have had an average multiple of 3.2x. The nature of these companies all require heavy operational nitty gritty, human insight and quick thinking.
Originally from London, Lizzie spent a few years in the city in event management for PE companies & later as a programme manager in the NHS. For the last 9 years Lizzie has been working in tourism in Sub-Saharan Africa. Starting her adventure managing lodges in Ghana & Uganda, she went onto start and operate her own businesses. Here she built an Africa wide travel agency, co-founded Uganda International Marathon (Uganda’s largest public fundraising event) and opened a boutique hotel and two restaurants. Moving to Nairobi in 2021 she began working for Purple Elephant Ventures and was stage lead for validation of the early-stage businesses. Recently returning from maternity leave she was clear that her passion and experience lay in delivering excellent customer service and travel experiences for a worldwide audience & thus the Nomad ambition was born.
Lizzie is focused on building sustainable tourism opportunities from the inside out and enjoys running, riding and travel with family and friends.
A graduate in Information Systems and Technology, I have an unquenchable thirst for exploring the world. This is precisely why I find immense satisfaction in my work at Nomad, where I can combine my passion for travel with my career. Traveling allows me to immerse myself in diverse cultures, savor unique flavors, and appreciate the beauty of our planet.
Wambui is a results-driven finance and accounting professional with an ACCA qualification. Her journey began as an intern at Little Einsteins East Africa, contributing to various aspects of the organisation's operations.She later transitioned to a role as an accounts and admin assistant automating inventory and records in an automotive spare parts company.
She also gained valuable experience as an Accountant at ByEarth Kenya. A role that further enriched her financial expertise and provided her with insights into the intricacies of financial management in the cosmetics industry.She is continuously committed to expanding her knowledge and skills in finance, embracing the dynamic nature of the field, and applying her expertise to contribute meaningfully to the success of the companies she serves.Beyond her professional life, she is an avid reader, passionate about charity work and enjoys travelling with her friends.
Finance and Admin Lead, an ICPAK member with over 10 years of experience in running businesses, NGOs, schools, and startups. Optimises operational efficiency, generates comprehensive financial reports, and provides strategic guidance for long-term growth. Passionate about using his skills to drive growth and development, and currently pursuing an Advanced Diploma in Tax Administration to further my knowledge and skillset.
In my spare time, I enjoy reading African literature, listening to music and attending traditional cultural events. These interests reflect my passion for the continent and its culture, and believes that stories and traditional cultures can play an important role in shaping the future of Africa