Forbes has released its annual “30 Under 30” list, which features 600 young entrepreneurs who are innovating their respective industries. Since 2012, FORBES’ 30 Under 30 list has recognized the brightest entrepreneurs, innovators and game-changers under the age of 30 who are transforming business as usual and changing the world.
In its 2020 edition, the list featured 600 young entrepreneurs, activists, scientists and entertainers from 20 industries who give everyone reason to hope. Some defying the odds, building businesses despite Covid-19; others are helping to fight the illness, serving on hospital frontlines or working with A.I. to discover new drugs. According to the magazine, these under 30 trailblazers have raised over $1 billion in venture funding and are proof positive that ambition and innovation can’t be quarantined.
Among the featured individuals are these outstanding Nigerians,Sophia Danner-Okotie, Inioluwa Deborah Raji, Chiney Ogwumike, Tade Oyerinde, Amobi Okugo, AJ Okereke, Oge Mora, Nnamdi Iregbulem, to mention a few.
The Forbes “30 Under 30” list Class of 2020 is made up of 30 honorees for each of the 20 categories which vary from work in art and style to energy, finance, tech, law and more. The list is a diverse one, with 20 per cent of the featured individuals identifying as either an immigrant or first generation.
Meet the Nigerians that were featured in the prestigious list below:
Chiney Ogwumike, 28
Two-time WNBA All-Star Ogwumike is an ESPN commentator and one half of “Chiney and Golic Jr.,” the first Black woman to host a national, daily sports-talk radio show. The 6’4″ forward led Stanford to three Final Fours and graduated with an International Relations degree. She was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 WNBA Draft.
Sophia Danner-Okotie, 29
Danner-Okotie is the founder of Besida, a black-owned boutique and online store based in Atlanta that offers sustainable fashion for women. Besida’s pieces are sustainably and ethically made in Nigeria, where Danner-Okotie was born. The brand’s most popular design is “The FourMidable,” a design that can be worn in four ways–as three tops and a skirt. Recently, Besida was awarded a $20,000 grant from LISC underwritten by Lowe’s.
Nnamdi Iregbulem, 29
Iregbulem is a Partner at Lightspeed Ventures focused on investments in technical enterprise software, application infrastructure and machine learning. He previously invested at ICONIQ Capital, where he deployed over $500 million into high-growth technology companies like GitLab, Epic Games (Fortnite), ezCater and Brightwheel. Iregbulem began his career as an investment banking analyst at J.P. Morgan, advising clients like EMC and Comcast.
Inioluwa Deborah Raji, 24
Since high school, Inioluwa Deborah Raji has been campaigning on behalf of others. Now aged 24, she has channelled her advocacy work to change the world’s biggest companies. As a founding member of the Algorithmic Justice League, a non-profit that raises public awareness about the social implications of AI, she has emerged as one of its star researchers. One of her major projects was an audit on Amazon Recognition’s deployed facial recognition product, discovering it was significantly less accurate for darker-skinned women than for white men. Over 70 top AI researchers signed an open letter in support of her work, and this, combined with increasing public pressure and campaigning, led Amazon – following the lead of IBM – to agree to support facial recognition regulation and later halt the sale of their product to police for at least a year.
AJ Okereke, 28
An investor who backs companies bringing new services and consumer goods to Africa, including logistics provider Jetstream and digital wealth firm Chaka. A first-generation American of Nigerian descent, Okereke often backs U.S educated founder returning to the African continent with new technologies and services.
Chinedu Eleanya, 29
Eleanya immigrated from Nigeria to the U.S. with his parents when he was 11. In 2018, he cofounded his second startup, Mulberry, a tech platform that retailers use to offer extended warranties to eCommerce customers. Key clients include fitness device Mirror, coffee machine maker Breville and mattress company Nectar. Mulberry has more than 50 customers and expects net revenue of more than $1 million this year.
Amobi Okugo, 29
Okugo, a defender for Austin Bold FC of the USL, founded A Frugal Athlete to teach athletes how to manage their finances. He also runs The Ok U Go Foundation that provides athletic resources to disadvantaged children. He’s an active member of the USL’s players’ union and Black Players? Alliance.
Check out the complete list of Forbes’ 30 Under 30 for 2021.
Nollywood Actor, Gideon Okeke has taken to his social media page to vent against the ill-treatment of Actors in the Nigerian movie industry.
According to the thespian, he’s been feeling frustrated and he questioned the usefulness of the actor’s guild in Nigeria.
His IG post reads ;
Why is it right for Actors to not receive royalties and residuals for their life’s work in Nigeria.
Is it because it says so in the contract ?
Is there really always a contract ?
What the heck does the guild stand for really ?
He continued via the caption ;
I’ve really begun to feel frustrated in this CRAFT that I love so much. Remember that during the times of COVID lockdown, ONLY folks working in “essential services” were allowed to come out. Doctors, Nurses, Farmers etc etc.
Let me remind you that while you were holed-up in your home for upwards of 4 months, watching Television, The ACTOR participated actively, in keeping your sanity in check. That’s An Essential Service if you ask Me.
But for All that the ACTOR does (for society) all that accrues to him at the end of the day, is the upfront payment which he accepted. Which most of the time, comes at a Piecemeal drop, covering for a duration of A Lifetime….For Life!