In a virtual ceremony held on September 11th 2020, Mr. Mahmood Ahmadu – founder of Africa’s leading multi-business IT conglomerate - was one of three celebrated business leaders to be presented the Forbes Best of Africa Award for 2020. Mr. Ahmadu received the Award in recognition of the several philanthropic activities he has led and contributed to – in a personal capacity as well as through corporate social responsibility initiatives. The ceremony was part of an online roundtable supported by the World Philanthropy Network, and will feature a keynote address by former Nigerian President, His Excellency Olusegun Obasanjo.
Forbes Custom’s Awards Committee has followed Mr. Ahmadu’s remarkable business career, for some years now. However, this award is in particular recognition of his transition, from prominent African businessman to one of the continent’s most significant philanthropists. Mr. Ahmadu has championed several empowering initiatives and social causes, over the years - including scholarships to China for African students, mentoring programs for outstanding young academic talent and contributions to the Diabetes Association - in addition to several on-going donations that have benefitted individuals and charitable institutions.
A serial entrepreneur, with a penchant for introducing tech-driven innovations to the market, Mr. Ahmadu first came to prominence in the early 80s, as a leading light among earlier pioneers in GSM technology, in northern Nigeria. Since then his varied ventures have spanned industries such as Mining, Real Estate, Construction, Agriculture, e-Education, e-Healthcare, Fintech and more. Mr. Ahmadu’s business interests currently span across 53 countries and five continents.
Mr. Ahmadu has previously been the recipient of several national and international awards – including UK’s first Empowering Communities Award, the Nigerian Economic Development Award 2016, Officer of the Order Of Niger Award, and more. Thanking Forbes for their recognition of his commitment to social causes, he reiterated his commitment to continue creating a positive impact on African communities.
“I’m humbled to be named one of the recipients of the Forbes Best of Africa Awards 2020”, Mr. Ahmadu said. “I’m touched by the fact that this award is as much in recognition of giving back to the community, as it is for business innovation and professional success. This honour is also an acknowledgement of the many talented and passionate individuals who are part of my team. It will be a huge motivation for us to continue on our mission to create an African IT conglomerate to rival the best in the world, while also being mindful of giving back and empowering the community”.
A proponent of the use of technology to empower individuals and introduce transparency, Mr. Ahmadu is a business leader working on ushering in a future of democratized, quick and easy access to mission-critical services. His entrepreneurial journey is entwined with the larger vision of creating state-of-the-art infrastructure for African governments, communities and individuals.
“Dubai serves as a gateway not only to the region, but the larger international markets as well. It has given me the perfect platform to harness innovation, but also do more for helping marginalised communities”, Mr Ahmadu shared. “This Award has encouraged me to be even more active in championing social transformation through cost-effective solutions and innovation,” he added.
About Mr Mahmood Ahmadu, Chairman of Online Integrated Solutions
As the Chairman of Online Integrated Solutions, Mr Mahmood Ahmadu’s entrepreneurial vision has empowered financial inclusion across Africa. Under his stewardship Online Integrated Solutions has emerged as a ‘one-stop-shop’ for Caribbean and African businesses, and a point of contact between these regions and global markets, particularly the Middle East and Far East Asia. An MBA from the Nassarawa University, Mr Ahmadu invested in his first successful company in the early 80’s, emerging as a bright star among earlier pioneers of trading in GSM, in northern Nigeria. He has pioneered Fintech services in the African market since 2012, with a vision to pursue holistic global integration of underserved markets. Mr Ahmadu is a strong believer is giving people and businesses the tools to empower themselves and leverage their talents, to becoming competitive innovators at a global scale.