Digital payment firm Cellulant picks acting CEO, eyes North Africa as first stop

KENYA – Digital payments company Cellulant has hired Akshay Grover as the Acting Chief Executive Officer effective May as Ken Njoroge, the co-founder and CEO transitions from his position to take up new roles at the board level.

Grover has over 15 years of experience focused on the TMT across the EMEA and Asia region and hopes to disrupt more mainstream business’ on the continent at Cellulant.

Before Cellulant he worked at ISON which covered Asia, ME, Africa, and worked closely with the founders of the ISON tech investment portfolio to expand and grow their business and saw the profitable exit for its PE investors. ISON has approximately US$600 million in capital commitments.

According to Ken Njoroge, co-founder and outgoing CEO Cellulant: “I am particularly excited about Akshay Grover, who takes over from me as the Acting-CEO effective May. I first met Akshay in March 2020 and resonated greatly with his energy and knowledge of the African market. Eventually, he joined the management team in January 2021. Since then, he has shown incredible leadership and has been instrumental in working with different teams to refine our growth strategy, finance and to optimise operations across Africa.”

Njoroge, who, at the beginning of the year announced his transition from the CEO position at Cellulant says since January, he and the management team have spent time drawing out the foundational plans that will guide growth over the next few years and building momentum in those areas.

“We have drawn inspiration from revisioning and recommitting to our mission of building world-class payment experiences for Africa’s mobile generation”

Ken Njoroge & Outgoing CEO, Cellulant

This has been a period to co-create and colour in the picture of Cellulant’s future.

“We have drawn inspiration from revisioning and recommitting to our mission of building world-class payment experiences for Africa’s mobile generation,” Njoroge said.

“This season also brings newness for me. I am looking forward to working and seeing things solely from the lens of a Board member, which puts me on the favourable side of pressure.”

Njoroge, the board and the management team are sure that Grover’s leadership experiences are a great fit for the CEO position.

At ISON, Grover worked with a wide spectrum of principals such as seed and early-stage investors, Private Equity, LP’s, DFI’s, Banks, Corporates and Industrial groups across a large region.

Prior to ISON, he spent a decade at EY’s TMT investment banking team and Dubai Holdings TMT investment arm – EITL where he drove M&A in excess of US$5 billion – both domestic and cross border and held numerous Observer positions on the Board of Dubai Holding’s investee companies.

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