CBC-African Business Awards 2008- Winners Announced

Published on 8th July 2008

MTN, Arnold Ekpe and Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke take the Top Honours at a glittering evening in London. The inaugural CBC-African Business awards took place on Thursday evening, 3 July 2008 at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London. Just under 500 government, business and media leaders from Africa, Europe, Asia and the USA attended the CBC - African Business Awards.


Ephraim Inoni, Prime Minister of Cameroon, Bethuel Mosisili, Prime Minister of Lesotho,   Senator Daggash, Nigeria's Minister of National Planning, Neville Isdell, Chairman of Coca Cola and other prominent diplomats and businessmen presented the Awards to the winners in a festive and memorable African night.


The awards were presented at the glittering ceremony, which was co-hosted by the Commonwealth Business Council (CBC) and African Business magazine, and sponsored by Zenith Bank, Ecobank, IGI and the private sector arm of the African Development Bank. A distinguished panel of judges, chaired by Omari Issa, selected winners in 16 categories. The nominees came from north, south, west and central Africa. One of the winners said afterwards that the Awards meant everything to them. "It is wonderful that your hard work is recognized and appreciated. We will never forget this night and we will always cherish these Awards."


Omar Ben Yedder, associate group publisher of African Business magazine, the organizer of the event said "We are thrilled to honor these exemplary men, women and businesses that truly embody African excellence in the world markets.  The nominees and winners of the African Business Awards 2008 are a shining example to their peers and the global Business community. There are success stories in Africa which need to be recognized and celebrated. This year we wanted to hold the ceremony in London, the financial centre of the world, and give both the nominees and winners a platform in front of a diverse and international crowd."  


Excitement mounted prior to the announcement of three of the most coveted Awards. The suspense was almost unbearable as the quality of the nominees was exceptional. Amid deafening cheering, Mo Ibrahim won the Lifetime achievement Award for changing the telecoms landscape in Africa and also his contribution in changing the perception of doing business in Africa. Arnold Ekpe CEO, Ecobank won African Business Leader of the Year. His group has become the premier pan-African multinational. Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke, Director General, Nigeria Stock Exchange, African Businesswoman of the year for her inspirational work in Nigeria and also in other African countries.  


The other big winners on the night were MTN, Ecobank and Anglo American. Anglo-American won three Awards: Best Global Business, Contributor to MDGs and Gender Sensitivity. Ecobank won two Awards: Technological Innovation and Business Leader of the Year. MTN also won two Awards:Brand of the Year and Best African Business.


Afif Ben Yedder, publisher of African Business added: "I am delighted to congratulate all the nominees and winners from across the African business community. Tonight we recognize and pay tribute to world class business leaders and enterprises in Africa. This is just the beginning of a great leap forward for the continent business sector. Tonight I see a new future for Africa, new energy, talent, and success.  With almost one billion people in the Continent, the new generations will make this century the century of Africa."  


Paul Skinner, Chairman of Rio Tinto and Chairman of the CBC said" The Forum and the CBC - African Business Awards are a demonstration of the strong interest of business in Africa. The enthusiasm and confidence of investors and business leaders in Africa is palpable. The optimism is immediate and for the long term."   


Afif Ben Yedder announced that the second African Banker Awards 2008 to honor Africa Top Bankers and Banks will be held in Washington on October 13 to coincide with the World Bank Annual meeting.


CBC African Business Awards 2008 Winners


1. Best Efforts towards Improving Investment Climate Ghana


2. Award for Technological Innovation  Ecobank


3. African Businesswoman of the Year Prof Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke OON, Director General  Nigeria Stock Exchange


4. African Brand of the Year  MTN


5. Best Corporate Citizenship/Social Responsibility Bamburi Cement, Kenya  


6. Lifetime achievement Mo Ibrahim, Founder of Celtel and Chairman, Mo Ibrahim Foundation


7. Award for Gender Sensitivity Anglo American


8. Leader in Reducing Digital Divide Submarine Cable, Nepad e-Initiative


9. Leader in Social Innovation Small Enterprise Foundation - South Africa


10. Leader in Contributing to Achieving MDGS Anglo-American


11. Best SME Africa Invest, Malawi 


12. Telecoms Company in Africa Celtel (Zain)


13. Airline of the Year South African Airways


14. Best Global Business in Africa Anglo-American


15. African Business Leader of the Year Arnold Ekpe, CEO, Ecobank  


16.  African Business of the Year MTN




Zenith Bank, Ecobank, IGI, Private Sector Arm of the African Development Bank




The Commonwealth Business Council (CBC) and Business in Africa Events UK Ltd


For further information and for access to photos, please Email: [email protected] or visit www.theafricanbusinessawards.com



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