Profile of the Week: Isis Nyong’o

Isis Nyong’o is a Kenyan American media and technology leader in Africa. Her love for mobile technology goes back to 2005 while working as a Senior Commercial Strategist for MTV Network Africa. She got involved in mobile marketing and got fascinated with the thresholds of mobile phones. She studied at Hillcrest School in Nairobi, Kenya.

Isis holds a degree from Stanford University and Harvard Business School. She has made her mark scaling in media and digital business across the continent.

She is the Principal/Founder of Asphalt - a strategic advisory firm that provides media and digital services in Kenya. She serves on the board of the Mango Tree Orphan Trust in Kenya.

She was selected as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2012. Isis has been named as one of the top 40 women under 40 in Kenya. Shortlisted on the Forbes Top 20 Youngest Power Women in Africa,  Isis Nyong’o was named one of Africa’s Top 20 Youngest Power Women. Isis serves on the board of the Africa Cancer Foundation.

 Isis Nyong’o's Work:

  • From August 2002- 2003, she  worked at myjobseeye- Kenya’s first online job site as marketing manager. Isis was part of the team that built brand and market entry for the company.
  • From 2005-2007, she was the Senior Commercial Strategy Manager at MTV Networks Africa in South Africa, where she envisioned and implemented MTV’S commercial Strategy for its entry into Africa. Isis structured and led complex negotiations for satellite TV, terrestrial TV, radio and 3G/DVB-H mobile TV distribution deals. Resulted in 8x increase in reach of flagship channel, MTV base, to 48.5 million viewers in first 9 months. Actively managed 6 distribution accounts across Africa with extensive strategic partnership development experience in Angola, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda and Tanzania.
  •  In 2008, she became the Business Development Manager at Google in Kenya Nairobi. While at Google, she specialized in mobile partnerships and developed the company’s content strategy for Africa.
  •  In 2009, she was the Senior Marketing Specialist at Charles Schwab an investment services firm.
  • As the Vice- president and Managing Director of Inmobi for Africa in 2011, she shaped the industry by enabling advertisers to reach the 100 million and growing mobile users in a targeted way.
  •  Presently, she is the founder of Asphalt and Ink.
  •  She founded an online platform to enrich the lives of mums and mums-to-be in Kenya called mumsvillage.

Why TechHer Loves Her:

Technology is an opportunity to learn, solve problems and build beautiful things. Isis shares the same ideology with us. She says “Technology is an opportunity to learn and build; to learn about a new idea, build. a new skill or deepen my understanding about a subject I’m already familiar with”.



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