Forbes Africa announces its 2013 person of the year winner

Forbes Africa, a subsidiary of the ABN Group and the continent’s first-ever international business publication localized for the African executive, today announced that the winner of its 2013 Person of the Year award is none other than Akinwumi Adesina, Nigeria’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development. The Person of the Year award ceremony took place on December 2, 2013, at the Villa Rosa Kempinski Hotel in Nairobi, Kenya.

The Forbes Africa Person of the Year has, since its inception two years ago, attracted the highest calibre of nominees from across the continent. It celebrates “the individual who, for better or worse, has had the most influence on events of the year gone by”.

Commenting on the winner of Person of the Year was Chris Bishop, Forbes Africa’s managing editor: “It was an honour to present this award in Kenya, for the first time, in the month of the country’s 50th birthday. Akinwumi Adesina was considered a worthy winner by the judges as he is a man on a mission to help Africa feed itself. We hope it will encourage the rest of the continent to grow more of its own food. Also, last year, we presented a Kenyan with the award in Nigeria – this year it was the other way round, which shows how much Forbes Africa is pan African.”

Forbes Africa also bestowed a Lifetime Achievement Award upon Manu Chandaria, founder of East African industry conglomerate, Comcraft Group of Companies. “Through his establishment of the East Africa Business Council, Mr. Chandaria has been a driving force in the rollout of the East African Community, which has provided local corporations with wider avenues, thus enabling their growth. With a combined GDP of around $100 billion and a population of 140 million people, it is a huge step in the right direction towards intra-African trade,” said Davlynne Lidbetter, general manager of Forbes Africa, in her speech congratulating Chandaria.

The other finalists for the Forbes Africa Person of The Year 2013 were:

1. Aliko Dangote, founder and president, Dangote Group

2. Patrice Motsepe, founder and executive chairman of African Rainbow Minerals

3. Strive Masiyiwa, founder of global telecoms group, Econet Wireless

4. Jim Ovia, founder of Zenith Bank Group

Following suggestions from the public, the top five most voted for candidates were posted online in a poll, which comprised a portion of the Person of the Year judges’ final decision. You can read more about the winners in the December 2013-January 2014 edition of Forbes Africa magazine.

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