Careers: Interviews
A Chat with Nii Simmonds: TED Global and RSA Fellow; Founder and CEO of eNubia; about commercializing African research innovations into indigenous African STEM enterprises to solve African challenges in health, agriculture, computing, sciences

This week, Stephen Ibaraki has an exclusive interview with Nii Simmonds.

Nii SimmondsNii Simmonds is Founder and CEO of eNubia. eNubia is focused on commercializing African research innovations into indigenous African STEM enterprises to solve African challenges in health, agriculture, computing, sciences, etc. As the African continent doubles to more than two billion inhabitants in 20 to 30 years, scaling exponential and pioneering innovations will be imperative to Africa’s growth and sustainability.

Professionally, Nii has previous management and P&L responsibility with Fortune 500 companies (Big Pharma & Biotech, Consumer Products, and Strategy Consulting). These roles have focused on strategic and long-term planning for various business units, and advising C-Level executives on growth strategy, joint-venture and competitive strategy.

Nii is also a Global Advisor for The Knowledge Pledge, whose mission is to "Pledge your Knowledge". TKP is a collaboration of purpose-driven leaders with a wealth of experience and broad networks, motivated to share insights and knowledge to support social entrepreneurs scale their impact in the world.

Nii is a TED Global and RSA Fellow. Nii became a TED Fellow in 2007 for his work in utilizing robotics to empower youth in STEM, in Ghana through his previous non-profit, Afrobotics. Afrobotics supported and mentored Ghanaian youth and young adults in robotics to build their interests in science and innovation. Nii has experience in the 'Maker Culture' or DIY field - welding, wood lathe/metal lathe, go-karts, tool & die, rebuilding small engines, Stirling Engines, potato cannons and remoted controlled cars.

Most recently, Nii worked and consulted in investment climate, financial inclusion and agribusiness for The World Bank Group, International Finance Corporation (IFC), and African Development Bank (AfDB). At the World Bank Group, he created a diaspora engagement program focused on engaging professionals in the diaspora to invest human and financial capital to SMEs in Africa. This program had partnerships with various donors and development partners to utilize guarantees and credit enhancements to entice diaspora investors to invest impact capital for sustainable development. At the AfDB, Nii created a supply chain professional mentorship initiative under the Jobs for Youth in Africa initiative, focused on skills development and mentorship through corporate and diaspora mentors.

Mr. Simmonds got his B.S. in Management/Finance from Smeal College of Business at Pennsylvania State University and a minor in Information Systems and Statistical Analysis. Mr. Simmonds holds an Executive Education Masters in Operations/Business Process Management from The Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania.



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