K. Monica Musonda

K. Monica Musonda

Zambia

CEO & Founder of Java Foods

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Corporate lawyer turned entrepreneur, Monica Musonda is CEO & Founder of Java Foods, a Zambian based food processing company. Java Foods vision is to become a leading food processor, committed to providing high quality and nutritious food from local products at affordable prices. Java Foods first product was “eeZee Instant Noodles”, which has become Zambia’s leading instant noodle brand. Java Foods also manufactures and distributes eeZee Supa Cereal (a fortified instant cereal/porridge).

Sub-Saharan Africa

By way of background, Monica is a dual qualified English solicitor and Zambian advocate with over 16 years post qualification experience. She begun her legal career working for the Attorney General of Zambia, where she advised on the privatization of state owned enterprises. She then went on to work in private practice for Clifford Chance and Edward Nathan (where she rose to the rank of partner). She also worked for International Finance Corporation in Washington DC. On a due diligence trip to Nigeria in 2007, she met Aliko Dangote who offered her the opportunity to join him and help expand his growing manufacturing conglomerate. She joined the Dangote Group in 2008 as Director Legal and Corporate Affairs and was later promoted to General Counsel based in Lagos, Nigeria. She was directly involved in Dangote Cement’s $13bn listing on the Nigerian Stock Exchange as well as assisted the Group raise various debt instruments in the international market. Monica was the project lead responsible for the Group’s $400m investment into Zambia to build the country’s largest integrated cement plant. Her experience working with one of Africa’s most successful entrepreneurs gave her the impetus to start her own business and in 2012, she moved back to Zambia and set up Java Foods.

Monica currently serves as non-executive director on the Boards of Airtel Networks Zambia Plc (where she is chair), Zambia Sugar Plc, Arcelor Mittal South Africa Plc, Dangote Industries Zambia Limited and sits on the Global Advisory Board for Scaling Up Nutrition Business Network. She is the recipient of the 2017 African Agribusiness Entrepreneur of the Year award, which is an award conferred annually to entrepreneurs who have demonstrated outstanding achievement in agricultural input and value addition in Africa. She is a 2013 Young Global Leader (World Economic Forum) and Archbishop Desmond Tutu Leadership Fellow. Forbes Magazine and Africa Investor named her as one of the leading Young Power Women in Business in Africa in 2013 and 2014 respectively. She is one of the few Zambian women involved in manufacturing/agro-processing at a scalable level.

She holds a LL.B from the University of Zambia and an LL.M from the University of London.