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Local entrepreneur makes Jack Ma award short-list

ETHEL Mupambwa, the founder and executive director of a Zimbabwean micro-lender, was this week named among ten finalists for this year’s Jack Ma Foundation African Business Heroes.

Ethel Mupambwa

The finalists, who were selected from over 22 000 applications across all 54 African countries, will pitch at the competition’s grand finale on November 13 and 14 for a chance to win a share of a US$1,5 million prize pool.

Mupambwa heads MoneyMart Finance, a micro-lender with branches in Harare CBD, Harare Mbare, Mutare, Bindura and Mhondoro which empowers women in the low-income bracket.

Armed with nothing but determination, Mupambwa started MoneyMart Finance five years ago and since then, her business has helped many out of poverty.
She has nine years of experience in finance and is a Level 2 Chartered Financial Analyst Candidate.

Mupambwa joins nine other finalists representing eight African countries including Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, Uganda.
Their businesses span key industries such as agriculture, fashion, education, healthcare, renewable energy and financial services.

“I continue to be amazed by the passion, resilience, and vision of Africa’s entrepreneurs, and I look forward to meeting these 10 extraordinary businesswomen and businessmen at the finale,” Jack Ma, founder of the Jack Ma Foundation and Alibaba Group, said in a statement.

“I am excited to learn more about how they are driving positive change and progress across the continent.”
During the online grand finale pitch, the top 10 heroes will present their business ventures, as well as their vision and leadership profile, to a finale judging panel that includes: Jack Ma; Ibukun Awosika, founder of the Chair Centre Group, a Nigerian company dealing with office furniture and banking security systems company; Strive Masiyiwa, founder and executive chairman of Econet Group, a pan-African telecommunications company and Joe Tsai, executive vice chairman of the Alibaba Group. —