Entrepreneur of the Week | Irene Etyang: Akimaa Africa

Three years after leaving campus, Etyang was still unemployed. She was busy knocking on office doors, dropping copies of her academic documents and curriculum vitae with the hope of getting a job.

One day, after spending time with friends somewhere along the dusty and sometimes dingy alleyways of the city, she retired to bed and recalled a statement she had heard on her graduation day.

“We were told to come up with food products that can solve problems in the community,” she told the Star in Busia county. “Because of that, I was able to come up with the idea of making bread from jackfruit, bread which is high in antioxidants.”

Etyang thought she had hit a jackpot until the idea vanished in thin air after a few days, as she lacked the raw material, machinery and money to help her process the bread.

Down but not out, she decided to try her hand in something else. “After that, I came up with infant formulas, basically porridge for infants,” she said with a glowing face.

“I was trying and I discovered that people liked the idea because we made it from millet, groundnuts and soybeans.”

She was happy with her innovation because with the sales she made from the infant formulas, she was able to provide basic needs for herself — accommodation, food and clothing — and would occasionally have money to send to her immediate family.

Read more about the rest of Etyang’s beautiful story here https://www.the-star.co.ke/news/big-read/2019-06-25-millet-chocolate-earns-busia-entrepreneur-us-fellowship/