21-year-old Nana Yaw Amoah Yeboah Afari, one of Ghana’s new up-and-coming ICT entrepreneurs, will launch three ICT solutions next month. Adding to this, he is also studying for a BSc at the Presbyterian University College and running his own ICT company.
Afari describes himself as an advocate of African transformation through technology and the Information and Communication Technology Undergraduate Students’ Association President at his university.
He says his path to software development started when he impressed his lecturer during a logic test, and the lecturer advised him: “Make programming your life, and you will make it big.”
“I always wanted to solve problems and since programming deals with 0s and 1s, I knew it would help me reduce complex problems to 0s and 1s, making them simple. Much more, I want to join hands with other developers and churn out innovative products. I was not the best in my class way back in St. Peter’s Senior High School, my friends were. Now, they are studying to be engineers and scientists. They will be engineers and scientists in Soft Systems Technologies and I will be the owner,” he says.
Afari has lofty goals: “In the next 5 years I will be a Board Director in the next Microsoft or Apple here in Africa.”
But his biggest challenges have yet to be overcome. It’s not easy, he says to attend to his studies (remaining top of his class) and run a company as the same time, while also trying to secure funding for his development projects.
“Also, I need to program and develop products which take like 4-6 hours of my time. I get tired and barely get enough sleep. I sleep for 3 or 4 hours a day. Sometimes my peeps go out and have fun but I deprive myself of all that and focus on impacting the world with my brain,” says Afari.
“Getting funding for my products has been tough. I develop management systems for companies and charge them a few thousands of dollars whilst some companies take tens of thousands of dollars to fund some of these products.”
He has some support in his efforts, he says. “My personal mentor is David Kwamena Bolton. He is a software developer himself and a director at SoftTribe. I talk to him a lot. He really pushed and spurred me on.”
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