These are the recipients of the Top Achiever Award from left Antoinette Prophy, Suraya Williams, Precious Kyriakides, Mampho Sotshongaye, Olivia Ngweni and Robyn Clay. At the back we have Zandile Nyawo and Charmaine Lambert from Absa. Photo: Supplied

DURBAN -  Five female founders were honoured for their achievements this week following an 18-month accelerator programme.

The programme is hosted by 88 Business Collective and sponsored by Absa, at an awards ceremony at Absa’s innovation lab in Cape Town.

The aim of the awards is to recognise the rising generation of female founders. It also acknowledges the hard work these founders have put in to make a difference not only the Cape Town ecosystem but the broader entrepreneurial landscape.

"We believe this is the African Century and it will be driven by determined female founders," said Antoinette Prophy, founder at 88 Business Collective.

She added that it is tough being a women in South Africa and being a female founder compounds this struggle. 

The 88BCAfrica Accelerator Programme provides entrepreneurs with the opportunity to participate in an authentic ecosystem of support fueled by data driven interventions, according to Prophy. 

The programme includes support from an advisory board, a business coach and management consultants.

Absa supported the initiative in line with its strategy to be an active force for good and to play a shaping role in society. 

Charmaine Lambert who manages the Absa Innovation Lab said, "As one of the sponsors of the event and venue it was a priviledge for Absa to be one of the sponsors celebrating not only the winners of this program but also all the women that were part of this program and the diverse support that they received as well as the community that is part of the village of 88 Business Collective". 

The Winners:

The five top achiever awards went to:

1. Mampho Sotshongaye: Founder of Golden Rewards 2. Olivia Ngweni: Founder of Thembela Kuthi Staffing Services
3. Precious Kyriakides: Founder of African Hair Kingdom
4. Robyn Clay: Director at Linktank
5. Suraya Williams: Founder of Design 26l

The 88 Business Collective also honoured determined tech Female Founders, who are not part of the Village but are dominating the tech ecosystem:

Tech Newcomer of the Year: Zulé Vuuren, Founder of Locumbase

Glass Ceiling Destroyer: Dr. Aisha R. Pandor, Co-Founder of SweepSouth