“That was also a very interesting lesson, because eventually, that will be the way we managed to make the most difference, not by convincing people about the goodness of our mission alone, or trying to shame them into doing good, we found out that ultimately strategic alliances, where people see the enlightened self-interest was almost always a more effective tool, which is where my activism was then balanced by my entrepreneurship. And this continuing dance went on.” — Bright Simons
In this episode of Made in Africa, Sarika Bansal talks with Bright Simons, President of mPedigree, a social enterprise working on three continents to secure communities from the harmful effects of counterfeiting. They pioneered a technology that lets one send a text message from a pharmacy where you are buying medicines and learn immediately if it is an authentic medication. mPedigree is bringing this same idea to other sectors, such as agriculture, cosmetics, and the automotive industry
In addition to being an entrepreneur, Simons has strong activist roots and is a leading thinker in Ghana. He serves as the honorary Vice President at IMANI, a leading think tank, where he talks and writes about political accountability, anti-corruption, and civil liberty projects.
Simons has received a large number of accolades. He is a member of the World Economic Forum Global Future Councils, an inaugural TED Fellow, an Archbishop Desmond Tutu Fellow, to name a few. He spends a considerable amount of energy working to build and sustain networks of solution seekers around the world, united by common values.
In the conversation, they talk about how Simons brings two competing sides of himself together: his activist brain, through which he sees injustices in society, and his entrepreneurial side, which wants to find solutions. He has been finding ways to bring a bit more justice and security to the world since he was in high school when he fought the government on raising school fees.
Made in Africa is Driving Change’s conversation series with African visionaries whose work impacts the public good. We are interested in learning how leaders across the continent got to where they are today. The inflection points along their journeys, their inspirations, how they pushed through moments of self-doubt, and how they came out the other side.
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