Nairobi News


Kenya’s top young entrepreneurs honoured at inaugural awards

By COLLINS OMULO November 29th, 2018 2 min read

Expeditions Maasai Safaris co-founder Pancras Karema and Michelle Ntalami of Marini Naturals emerged the top winners at the inaugural Young Entrepreneurs Awards (YEA) 2018 held on Wednesday, November 28.

Mr Karema bagged the Young Male Entrepreneur of the year while Ms Ntalami was the female award winner in the awards that featured some of the most industrious businessmen and women in Kenya.

The two emerged as the top winners out of the 10 winners who were selected from 32 nominees in 10 categories after being subjected to a public vote through an online system.

Ms Ntalami floored big names including Anerlisa Muigai of Nero Company Ltd to bag her award.


Mr Karema said that the award was a demonstration of his company’s focus on availing as many holiday choices at affordable rates to Kenyans as possible and also underscored their desire to make affordable holiday travel a reality for all households in Kenya by the year 2021.

“I’m incredibly overwhelmed and sincerely humbled this evening to learn of my declaration as the Male Entrepreneur of the Year 2018 by Bizna Kenya. It is such a remarkable moment for Expeditions Maasai Safaris and myself to receive this recognition,” Mr Karema while speaking to Nairobi News.

“I would like to thank all our loyal customers, supporters and the entire Expeditions Maasai Safaris family without whose support this could not have been possible. With your continued support, I am confident we will together make it happen,” he added.

Abel Mutua of Phil-It won the Entertainment Industry award in a fiercely competitive category that included gospel artiste Kevin Bahati of EMB Records, and fellow artiste Anthony Mwangi aka Anto Neo Soul.

Anyiko Owoko of Anyiko Public Relations bagged the Service Industry Awards category while Digital Technology award went to Samuel Majani of Ghafla.


Others winners were Tim Kipchumba of Questworks (Real Estate), Rodgers Kirwa of iAgribiz Africa (Agripreneur), Mercy Kyallo of Yallo Limited (Manufacturing), Ian Mati of Vintara Collections-Ke (Fashion and Beauty) and Martin Ruga of Deserts Anyone Ltd (Hospitality).

The winners will get marketing and other business support services worth over Sh1 million.

The Awards organized by Bizna Kenya – a business portal that provides marketing and enterprise development solutions to small businesses and entrepreneurs – is designed to identify upcoming and industrious entrepreneurs between 18 and 35 years possessing great business acumen.

Bizna Kenya founder and CEO Tonnie Mello said: “We are happy to set the ball rolling on our ambition to create a network of outstanding young entrepreneurs that can drive our economy forward. We will continue to encourage more to start their own businesses by recognising those we are making significant contribution to the economy.”

Here is the full list of winners:

1. Young Entrepreneur of the Year – Male
Pancras Karema – Expeditions Maasai Safaris

2. Young Entrepreneur of the Year – Female
Michelle Ntalami – Marini Naturals

3. Agripreneur Award
Rodgers Kirwa – iAgribiz Africa

4. Services Industry Award
Anyiko Owoko – Anyiko Public Relations

5. Fashion and Beauty Award
Ian Mati – Vintara Collections KE

6. Hospitality Award
Martin Ruga – Deserts Anyone Ltd

7. Entertainment Industry Award
Abel Mutua – Phil-It- Productions

8. Manufacturing Awards
Mercy Kyallo – Yallo Limited

9. Real Estate Award
Tim Kipchumba – Questworks Limited

10. Digital Technology Award
Samuel Majani – Ghafla