Veteran entrepreneur Richard Maponya wins the 2012 Africa Entrepreneurship Lifetime Achievement Award
Richard John Pelwana Maponya. PHOTO/African Success
The African Leadership Network, the membership network of new generation leaders in Africa, and Omidyar Network, a philanthropic investment firm, on Friday, 12 October 2012, announced Dr. Richard John Pelwana Maponya as the winner of 2012 Africa Awards for Entrepreneurship Lifetime Achievement Award.
Maponya was honored at the 2012 Africa Awards for Entrepreneurship ceremony, which is part of the African Leadership Network’s Annual Gathering in Accra, Ghana. The award captured Maponya’s achievements in his seven-decade career in entrepreneurship, and consolidates his distinction as an iconic African entrepreneur.
During his acceptance speech at the awards, Maponya said “At the time I started my first business in the 1950s, it was difficult for a young African to dream of political freedom, let alone entrepreneurial success.
The African economy is growing
Today, Africa is free and democracy is taking root. The African economy is growing, and presenting opportunities for entrepreneurs that at my time were a pipe dream. I am pleased to accept this award, as it is a reminder of what we can do as individuals and collectively, to create wealth for Africa and a better life for our people.There is nothing to stop Africans from doing what they want to do now.”
Dr. Maponya began his entrepreneurial career in his twenties in the 1940s, and over the last seven decades has built a retail empire in South Africa. Among other outstanding achievements, Maponya’s business successes include building the Maponya Mall, one of South Africa’s biggest shopping malls with over 200 stores in Soweto.