By David Oladimeji
Airtel Africa Group CEO-designate, Segun Ogunsanya, has been named the African Business Leader of the Year in the 2021 African Business Leadership Awards (ABLA). The awards are organized by African Leadership Magazine, a flagship, pan-African, leadership-focused publication.
Ogunsanya topped the category ahead of runner-up, Standard Bank Group CEO, Simphiwe Tshabalala. According to the organizers, Ogunsanya, who also won the Africa Industry Personality of the Year in 2020, was selected in a keenly contested three-step points-based process that included a call for nomination; online voting for shortlisted nominees; and the editorial board’s final review of nominations and voting submissions.
Online voting accounted for 65% of the final outcome, with supporting evidence contributing 35% in the final selection process. The awards attracted over 300, 000 entries on the website and across social media platforms, as well as submissions via email and physical posts from Africans across the continent and in Diaspora.
Ogunsanya, an engineer and chartered accountant, has over 30 years of cognate experience garnered across multiple geographies, organizations and diverse sectors such as telecoms, consulting, Banking and Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG). He joined Airtel Nigeria in 2012 and his appointment as Airtel Africa Group CEO comes into effect on 1st October 2021.
All award winners and runners-up will be presented with an award trophy and formally decorated with instruments of the honour at the 6th Invest in Africa Summit (Virtual), scheduled for September 16 – 17, 2021, from 3.00 pm – 5.00 pm (GMT) daily, with the theme: Africa 4.0: Redefining Growth, Sustainability, and Innovation.
Alongside the African Business Leader of the Year award category, winners in the 11 categories of the 2021 ABLA were unveiled by Dr Ken Giami, Publisher of the Africa Leadership Magazine, who expressed gratitude to everyone who submitted nominations and participated in the voting process.
Commenting on the awards, Dr Giami said the awards celebrate grit, purpose, and impact in Africa’s business environment, especially in what continues to be a difficult period for most people due to the impact of coronavirus. He further added that the leaders who have emerged winners in the various categories have exhibited these celebrated attributes in admirable capacities and are deserving of great accolade.