From 5 to 1000 people: Telling the Andela Story, 4 Years Later

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The biggest questions that most start-up founders have at heart are; how best they can grow and scale their companies for impact, and how much they can keep the culture of excellence and fun. The same could have come up on the agenda when Ian Carnevale, Iyinoluwa Aboyeji, Nadayar Enegesi, Jeremy Johnson, and Christina Sass sat down in the Andela foundation days.

It is often told that Andela is a story of people from all over the world coming together to solve a problem, a key reason for the successful attraction of investments from great people like Mark Zuckerberg.

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This same story was retold by Seni Sulyman, the Vice President for Global Operations/Country director of Nigeria on his visit to the Ugandan Andela Community, as he gave an insight on how Andela has grown into the start up it is today. Mr. Seni does not believe in an automatic happening of events. “Everything is built on Hard work,” he says.

It is from the hard work combined with a purpose for existence, attraction of the best talents, and availability of conducive environment that Andela has grown. The startup has been built on a foundation of two factors; the availability of a lot of capital at one end, and the availability of technology talents on the other. What Andela does is to look out  for that talent, fit them in the company’s culture, and train them into experts ready to utilize the capital.

Mr. Seni defined the structure of operations in the company as a several business in one.

“Andela is a community building company, a recruitment agency, training company, placement company, logistics company, and facilities company.”

It is through this structure that we have seen the development of the Andela Learning Community, a Google initiative to make Android a defacto mobile OS in Africa; as well as a contribution by Andela in its bid to create a hub of developers concentrated in various cities on the continent.


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“Our mission requires us to open source, and anyone with internet access and an interest in becoming a developer can jump onto the platform,” added Mr. Seni. With this, we could see the brand reaching the goal of 100,000 developers in the next 5 years.