In the
East African business circles, few entrepreneurs shine brighter than Njeri
Rionge. Rionge is of Kenya’s most successful and revered serial entrepreneurs;
she has co-founded several multi-million dollar companies in quick succession.
One of such companies is Wananchi Online, a leading Internet service provider
which has gone on to become one of East Africa’s leading cable, broadband, and
IP (Internet-based) phone company.

Rionge
started her first business at the age of 19, selling yoghurt at schools in the
capital city of Nairobi. She went on to sell clothes and run a few other small
businesses. Today, she is one of the pioneer women investors in Africa’s IT
sector. Wananchi Online is East Africa’s first mass-market internet service
provider which has grown to become the region’s leading internet company.

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Over
the years, Rionge has established a host of other thriving businesses,
including Ignite Consulting, a flourishing business consultancy; Ignite
Lifestyle, a healthcare consultancy; Business Lounge, one of Kenya’s largest
startup incubators; and Incite, a booming digital marketing agency.

Despite
her busy schedule, her passion to impart knowledge in young entrepreneurs have
not been hindered; the serial entrepreneur shares her passion through Ignite
Consulting, which she currently runs as a coaching, strategy facilitation, and
skills training centre. Through which she shares her skills with young entrepreneurs
in her country, helping them grow their own businesses.

Rionge
is passionate about growing businesses and igniting potentials, she believes in
Africa as the next economic frontier. She has over 26 years of leadership and
change management experience, working with SMEs and entrepreneurs to grow
indigenous businesses that can be scaled across Africa. She is also a
motivational speaker and life coach, passing on her wisdom and experience to
upcoming entrepreneurs.

Rionge,
who’s in her late 40s, shows no sign of letting up on entrepreneurship. She is
passionate about Africa’s position as the next big economic miracle and wants
to contribute to the capacity of the continent to reach its full potential.

Her advice
when inspiring upcoming entrepreneurs is to be resilient. Resilience, she
believes, or having a strong backbone that can handle challenges, and is the
key to successful entrepreneurship.

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