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Massachusetts Institute of Technology Legatum center for development & entrepreneurship

Legatum Center Blog

Below is an article from the Legatum Center

The Legatum Center at MIT Welcomes Its Largest Cohort of Impact-Driven Entrepreneurs to the Third Foundry Fellowship.

Marking its 15th Year, the Center Continues to Foster Sustainable Prosperity and Innovation Across Global Growth Markets.

CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts – Celebrating its 15th year at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the third year of its Foundry Fellowship, the Legatum Center officially welcomed its 3rd cohort of 13 fellows this month.

The Foundry Fellowship, a program designed in 2020 for Africa-based entrepreneurs who have scaled companies and have ambitious goals for building Africa’s innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystems, is a conduit to strengthen community ties and create sustainable prosperity across the continent.

This year’s cohort, comprising 13 entrepreneurs from 8 African countries and representing a diverse range of industries, is the largest group of Foundry Fellows to date. Their ventures address pressing global challenges, from redefining horticulture logistics and addressing the modern energy crisis to creating more accessible avenues to higher education, while creating economic opportunities and prosperity within their respective communities.

In discussing the program’s purpose, Executive Director Dina Sherif said, “The Foundry Fellowship is a manifestation of our belief in fostering a community of Africa-based entrepreneurs who share a vision for a continent where people, ideas, and resources move seamlessly across borders and where ecosystems enable innovation-driven entrepreneurs to thrive and scale. At the Legatum Center, our commitment to our Fellows extends beyond providing them with educational resources. We believe in fostering the holistic growth of our Fellows as leaders who can drive meaningful impact in the world. To accomplish this, we offer a diverse and multifaceted program that combines a world-class curriculum with immersive experiences and invaluable connections.”

This year, the fellows will have the opportunity to visit Egypt, Botswana, South Africa, and Dubai, chosen strategically for their rapidly growing startup ecosystems. Through these tours, they get a chance to interact with seasoned entrepreneurs, industry experts, policymakers, and fellow innovators through whom they can gain firsthand insights into the challenges and opportunities present in different regions. This experiential learning not only deepens their understanding but also equips them with practical tools for addressing real-world issues. 

Jennifer Brady, Senior Advisor of the Foundry Fellowship, emphasized the immense value of the ecosystem tours, stating,“Many of the fellows are at a unique inflection point in their careers and businesses.  The offering of direct and immersive ecosystem tours in some of the world’s fastest developing regions offers the fellows a chance to begin seeing new pathways for their businesses to grow into new regions and localities.”

One of this year’s Foundry Fellows, Ahmed Zahran, Founder of Egypt-based KaremSolar, shared his excitement, saying, “Being part of the Legatum Center’s Foundry Fellowship is an incredible opportunity to learn, grow, and collaborate with fellow entrepreneurs who are passionate about making a difference. I am honored to be part of this dynamic community.”

The Legatum Center remains committed to nurturing entrepreneurs as they work towards driving positive change and creating a brighter future for their markets and across the globe. For more information about the Legatum Center at MIT and the Foundry Fellowship program, please visit

About The Legatum Center: The Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at MIT was founded 15 years ago on the belief that entrepreneurs and their innovation-driven solutions are key to advancing economic and social progress in global growth markets.  Following MIT’s keystone principle of mens et manus, The Legatum Center believes that principled leadership, research, and the power of community hold the key to addressing some of the world’s most pressing problems with sustainable and equitable solutions.

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