Business StartUp tips from a Successful ‘She-EO’ of Java Foods Monica Katebe Musonda

Miss Monica Katebe Musonda Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Java Foods Ltd. Picture courtesy of Enoch Kavindele Jr.
  • Start small, manage your costs, understand your market and how you are going to be paid before you expand. But don’t be afraid to start – learn by doing.
  • Pick the right team: those who will challenge you and also those who believe in your company’s vision.
  • Leverage your networks! For anyone at any stage in a startup, realizing you are not alone is key.
  • Remember “The Customer is King” – focus on giving the customer what he/she wants. But make sure you get paid before you spend!
  • Don’t be afraid to fail or make mistakes. Pick yourself up and continue to focus on your goal but change “the how” (strategy). Then let your success speak for you.

(Extract of Monica’s words to StartUp-prenuers from the SheInspiresHer page by Lisa Lindy)

A successful She-EO who has found what her purpose in life is. A practicing lawyer by profession with a pedigree of excellence. A woman that has demonstrated that business is not for men only but that women can make it too. She has worked as Partner at Edward Nathan in South Africa, worked at the Washington based lender International Finance Corporation – IFC wing of the World Bank and above all worked with Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote whose company Group portfolio accounts for 43% of the Nigerian Bourse (Stock Exchange). With this rich corporate exposure amassing 13 years in the diaspora, Miss Monica Katebe Musonda against all odds, left her job as General Counsel for Dangote Group to start her own business back home in Zambia. This saw the birth of Java Foods Ltd the manufacturers of eeZee Instant Noodles or eeZee Supa Cereal line. To listen to Monica’s story click this link: Monica’s Story on StartUp Grind.

Monica at work at the Java Foods factory. She shares a light moment with her employee.
Monica at work at the Java Foods factory. She shares a light moment with her employee.
African Agribusiness Entreprenuer of the year award 2017 - Monica's latest award.
African Agribusiness Entreprenuer of the year award 2017 – Monica’s latest award.
Monica Katebe Musonda (left) features on StartUp Grind to tell her story. StartUp Grind Director Shupe Mwanza (right).
Monica Katebe Musonda (left) features on StartUp Grind to tell her story. StartUp Grind Director Shupe Mwanza (right)looks on during the interview session

Monica’s key accolades include the following:

  • African Agribusiness Entrepreneur of the Year Award – 2017
  • Young Global Leader (World Economic Forum) and an Archbishop Desmond Tutu Leadership Program Fellow – 2013
  • Forbes Magazine and Africa Investor named her as one of the leading Young Power Women in Business in Africa – 2013 and 2014
  • Serves as Non Executive Director on various Boards to include Zambia Sugar the most recent

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