Elo Umeh emerges one of IESE Business School’s 40under40


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EloUmeh, Terragon Group’s Founder and Managing Director, has made the 40under40 list of entrepreneurs by IESE Business School from over 46,000 alumni across 129 countries.

Through its Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center (EIC), IESE launched the "IESE 40under40" programme, selecting the 40 former students under 40 who have excelled in the development of new business projects. This selection was made among the over 46,000 students who have participated in some of the training programmes taught by the school.

These 40 projects have allowed the creation of 2,197 jobs in 12 countries, from 4 continents, receiving € 544 million in external investment, and generating € 251 million in annual revenue for the economy. Half of these start-ups were born during the last 5 years, and 17% of them began their activity by bootstrapping, without using external investment.

The selection of the "IESE 40under40" was been done by a jury of international experts, based on a rigorous analysis of the projects, especially their impact on society in terms of social contribution and job creation, in addition to the growth and the level of innovation, among other criteria.

The jury is composed of national and international experts in the development of new business projects, such as Lucas Carné, Co-Founder of Privalia; Brian Cohen, Founding Partner and President of New York Venture Angels; Jonathan Moules, Journalist specialized in entrepreneurship at the Financial Times; Pedro Nueno, Emeritus Professor of Entrepreneurship at IESE; Raimundo Sala, General Manager of PayPal and Ignasi Salvador, Director of Innovation of Celsa Group.

Commenting on this achievement, Umeh commended the initiative stating that it will inspire new entrepreneurs in their ventures and will foster the growth of the community of IESE entrepreneurs globally. “I am both excited and humbled at this feat and would like tothank my colleagues, clients, partners and all who have been with me on this journey. I would never have been able to make this list without their tremendous support and cooperation” he said.

The award-ceremony which will be on November 28 at IESE Barcelona, will bring together a large part of the selected entrepreneurs, as well as a broad representation of the entrepreneurial ecosystem, and the jury of the initiative.

Umeh is passionate about growing digital in Africa and with the company’s exploits, is transforming the way companies are reaching their customers leveraging data and technology. He participated in the Advanced Management Program in Media and Entertainment and holds a Global Executive MBA from IESE Business School, where he graduated as the Best Student of the class of 2016. 

Main data of the 40 selected startups (aggregated data):
40 entrepreneurs.
4 continents 2,197 new jobs generated.
544 million euros of foreign investment received.
251 million euros of annual income for the economy.
31 years old (youngest entrepreneur) / 37 years old (older entrepreneur).
Projects founded between 2001/2016.
17% of projects were founded by bootstrapping, without using external investment.
65% of startups with service-based business model (35% in products).


Africa’s leading Digital Powerhouse, Terragon Group, is a data and marketing technology business committed to unlocking value for businesses using insight to reach mobile audiences in Africa.

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