, JOHANNESBURG, Oct 25 – Centum Investment Company Limited Chief Executive Officer James Mworia has been named the Africa Young Business Leader of the Year 2011 at the inaugural All Africa Business Leader Awards (AABLA).
At the ceremony held in Johannesburg, South Africa, Mworia was among leading African business executives honoured for making a difference through innovation in their industries and sectors.
“The award is an honour not only to Centum but to the country,” the CEO said of his achievement while crediting it to his team’s efforts and the guidance of the Board of Directors.
The recognition comes only a month after the 33-year-old CEO was ranked among the top ten influential men in Africa by renowned magazine, Forbes.
Mworia is a Certified Public Accountant, a Chartered Management Accountant and holds a Bachelor of Law Degree from the University of Nairobi. He is also an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya.
While selecting him as one of “The 10 Youngest Power Men in Africa’, Forbes cited Mworia’s role in driving Centum’s regional expansion program that had seen it venture into new territories such as Mauritius and Nigeria.
It was this instrumental role that also endeared him to the AABLA judges and thus the honours. Mworia has been CEO of Centum and its subsidiaries since October 2008 and has overseen the near doubling of the firm’s investment portfolio to Sh15 billion.
The feted director affirmed the need to redouble Centum’s efforts in the implementation of their ambitious strategic plan in order to ensure good returns for their 38,000 shareholders.
During the ceremony, several business luminaries on the African continent were awarded with Nigerian business magnate, Aliko Dangote whose interests span food processing, cement manufacturing, and freight took home two awards for Africa Business Leader of the Year and Africa Entrepreneur of The Year.
Sim Tshabalala, Deputy CEO for Standard Bank Group, also won two awards, namely, CNBC Africa Business Success in Africa award and Leadership in Arts award.
ABSA Group CEO South Africa Maria Ramos won the Africa Businesswoman of the Year award while the founder of retail giant, Pick ‘n’ Pay, Raymond Ackerman received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his vision for the retail sector.
The organisers intend to turn the awards into an annual event that aims to ‘discover and celebrate African business leaders, create a culture of entrepreneurship and develop best practices.’