TechInAfrica – Waste management is one of the biggest issues in Africa and other countries around the world. Speaking of wastes, there are many types of them that we produce every day, including plastics, aluminum products, metal wastes, organic food wastes, nylon wastes, and so forth. These wastes have created negative side effects on the environment as well to people’s health.
Despite the lack of efficiency in waste management solutions in Africa, there are these African entrepreneurs who run businesses in the waste management industry. Cited from tipsdailystartup.com, these are three African entrepreneurs who run the waste recycling business:
- Bilikiss Adebiyi Abiola, Wecyclers, Nigeria
Bilikiss Adebiyi Abiola is a Nigerian who studied at Fisk University and Vanderbilt University. Before starting her own company, she had worked as a software engineer at IBM for 5 years. She acquired her MBA at MIT’s Sloan School of Management. During this period, she ran a project in recycling with her team named Wecyclers.
She and team learned that Lagos as the capital city of Nigeria with a population of more than 16 million produced up to 10,000 metric tons of waste every day. From there, they saw the opportunity from the industry and then quitting her job to pursue a career in the recycling business.
She has gained much attention from local and global media ever since she started the business, including from CNN and the Huffington Post. The company has secured strategic partnerships with companies like Unilever, DHL, NBC, CC-Hub, Oracle, Lawma, and so forth.
- Andrew Mupuya, YELI, Uganda
The Ugandan government has banned plastic bags due to its bad effect on the environment. Andrew Mupuya saw this as an opportunity to create a business idea. He started manufacturing paper bags through his company, Yeli when he was just 16 after both of his parents losing their jobs.
To start his business, he raised $11 from selling 70kg plastic wastes and borrowing money from his teacher. He made some research and observation by visiting kiosks and small businesses and ended up with his paper bag business.
Andrew’s paper bag company has grown and produced around 20,000 paper bags per week. His clients are ranging from supermarkets to restaurants, medical centers, multinational companies, and so forth.
- Lorna Rutto, EcoPost, Kenya
Lorna Rutto pursued her career in the waste management industry in 2009 and founded EcoPost. Her company focuses on recycling plastic wastes which are collected from trash cans and dump sites in Nairobi, Kenya. They then manufacture fencing posts out of these wastes. These posts become popular nowadays and are used in houses and forest reserves to fence the properties.
EcoPost has made around 10,000 posts and created more than 500 jobs with yearly revenue of over $150,000. It has gained international recognition after winning several awards, such as the Bid Network Nature Challenge Award, SEED Award, Enablis Business Award, among others.