Ada Osakwe is the founder and CEO of Agrolay Ventures, an agro-business investment company, and an award-winning entrepreneur. She was employed by the Tony Elumelu Foundation as senior investment adviser to Akinwumi Adesina, Nigeria’s former Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, from 2012 to 2015, advising on all agribusiness and food investment-related activities involving private-sector investors. There, she also led the development and launch of the $96 million Fund for Agricultural Financing in Nigeria (FAFIN), an innovative private equity fund focused on small- and medium-sized agribusiness processing companies in Nigeria.
Osakwe was also a lead in the launch of the Youth Employment in Agriculture Program (YEAP) and led the campaign team behind Adesina’s election as president of the African Development Bank Group (AfDB). Before that, she worked at Kuramo Capital, a New York-based private equity firm, and was a Senior Investment Officer at the AfDB.
Osakwe is a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum and a Desmond Tutu Leadership Fellow. In 2018, Forbes Afrique listed her as one of the Top 100 Africans contributing to economic impact on the continent. Osakwe serves on the Governing Board of the One Acre Fund, a non-profit that serves small-holder farmers in Africa. She is a member of the AfDB Presidential Youth Advisory Group and a mentor on the Future Global Leaders Fellowship.
Osakwe received her MBA from the Kellogg School of Management in Illinois; an MSc in Economics and Finance from University of Warwick, U.K.; and a BSc in Economics (First Class Honours) from the University of Hull, U.K.