Yesterday I had the great honor of being been awarded the prestigious Most Valuable Entrepreneur (MVE) award during Global Entrepreneurship Week 2011 events taking place here in Addis this week.
Global Entrepreneurship Week 2011 is the world's largest celebration of entrepreneurship, and features millions of people participating in thousands of events in more than 100 countries and all 50 United States. Events are held November 14-20, 2011, to celebrate innovation, entrepreneurship and creativity. Now in its fourth year, Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) brings together aspiring and inspiring entrepreneurs, helping them embrace originality, imagination and ingenuity through local, national and global activities.
The Most Valuable Entrepreneur (MVE) award is given to one Entrepreneur a year in the context of Global Entrepreneurship Week. The Award was given to me during a panel seminar at the Addis Ababa University Faculty of Business and Economics. The audience was comprised of up-and-coming business and economic students [ both under graduate and post graduate ], faculty, and assorted big wigs including those from the Global Entrepreneurship Week committee, all very excited to hear about what entrepreneurship can do to further enhance Ethiopia’s development.
I spoke about the challenges and rewards of entrepreneurship that I had experienced in building soleRebels into the planet's fastest growing African Footwear brand!
I also discussed the idea that being a successful entrepreneur is not simply about hard work. Its also about having good fortune [ too often we underestimate the role good fortune plays in ALL our success ] and also about having a great team beside you!!! These multiple factors, I explained, have allowed me to build what I have built so far and will allow me to take soleRebels to the next level.
And really That is the true power of entrepreneurship - it involves not only an idea and a single person, but also those who will follow that idea, dedicate themselves to it and make it a living and breathing reality. It is within this process that greater shared prosperity for the many can be achieved.
My final thought to the audience was that in the near future I hoped to hear that people from that room were now leading their very own companies that were creating world class products and well paying jobs! Because After all isn’t that every entrepreneurs dream!!!
Build your dreams . Spread the wealth.