techbuild.africa, a pan-African digital news and information platform focused on supporting African startups, hubs and the innovation ecosystem across the Continent, has instituted a pan-African advisory board comprising Sheilah Birgen (Kenya), Lanre Basamta (Nigeria) and Rene Parker (South Africa).
Speaking on the new board, Chukwuemka Fred Agbata, Jnr (CFA) said, “as a truly Afrocentric platform, we want representation from across the continent, not just in our stories but also on our Advisory Board.
We have deliberately sought out ecosystem builders to support us, as our work at techbuild.africa will align with their personal interests of contributing to the thriving African tech, innovation, and entrepreneurship ecosystem.
This is a dynamic market and we need to stay on our toes which is why we have onboarded leaders with real experience and deep insights to guide us in the development and execution of our strategies.”
Sheilah’s experience spans entrepreneurship, coaching, mentoring, technology and innovation with a knack for the ecosystem, community building, as well as African startup policies.
Under her leadership in 2015, mLab was listed in the top 10 best accelerators 2015-2017 in the World by UBI Global Benchmark, the only accelerator from a developing country.
She was listed by Root magazine as one of the top six women leading the charge to grow the technology sector across the African continent.
She has worked with 20+ international partner organizations on projects including the World Bank, Spider, USAID, HIVOs, Intel, Samsung, Nokia, Google, Facebook, Governments (Kenya, Finland) to mention a few.
Sheilah is presently the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Cord.
Lanre is a business leader with a bias for strategy delivery, marketing execution and sustainable growth.
His overriding passion is to deploy skills, experience and passion in business & brand management, communications and marketing to positively influence business prosperity, consumer perception, stimulate increased public engagement and drive incremental growth for forward looking brands.
He has held leadership positions previously at SystemSpecs, Sidmach Technologies, and Cellulant.
Lanre is currently the Group Head of Mobile Financial Services at Interswitch Group.
Rene is the Managing Director of RLabs and played a leading role in transforming RLabs into an award-winning global social enterprise from the humble beginnings of a community project in Cape Town.
RLabs is a global movement that has inspired replication of the model in 23 countries and impacted more than 13.5 million people since its inception.
Rene has a passion for empowering women in technology and business and entrepreneurship. She has been the driving force for RLabs Women training programs and the founder of Junk.fund an innovative crowdfunding platform that serves as a support network for women-led businesses.
She was a 2019 and 2020 Africa Netpreneur Prize Judge, a programme created by Jack Ma and run by the Jack Ma Foundation, which aims to support and showcase African Entrepreneurs. #ANPI.
Rene also served as a board member of the Living Labs in Southern Africa (LLiSA) network where she fulfilled the portfolio of capacity building, community development and communications and is a founding member of the Western Cape Government youth development network currently focused on driving youth economic empowerment through technology, entrepreneurship and innovation.
Rene was a Winner of the Inspiring Fifty South Africa 2019 Award, an initiative that aims to increase diversity in tech, by boosting the visibility of female role models in STEM.
Rene is a sought after international speaker with a strong focus on innovation, Living Labs and empowering women through technology and entrepreneurship as well as a thought leader who provides a variety of consulting services in International Development and Community Innovation to both the private and public sectors.
René’s latest venture involves becoming an Angel investor and co-founding an Angels Fund called RLabs Angels.
Her hobbies include anything that fuels her adrenaline addiction while dabbling in her side hustles of being a hostess and learning opera.
techbuild.africa is a tech media platform supporting African startups as they build the future of Africa.
We exist to amplify the authentic stories of African startups; stories that showcase the strength and resilience of our innovators across the continent, as they persevere to create solutions to our societal challenges.