Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum/Managing Director, ICO Conferences & Events
Irene Ochem is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum (AWIEF), a non-profit and pan-African women empowerment organization that works to promote and support women enterprise and innovation in Africa. She is also the Founder and Managing Director of ICO Conferences & Events, an international conference production and event management company based in South Africa and Nigeria.
Before venturing into entrepreneurship, Irene worked for more than 20 years with international organisations in Europe and Africa and gained widespread experience in management and international development.
Irene holds an MBA degree from University of London (UK). She obtained a language translation diploma from SSLMIT (Scuola Superiore di Lingue Moderne per Interpreti e Traduttori) Italy. Other postgraduate qualifications are in project management (University of Cape Town) and gender and trade related issues.
Irene is the designer and convener for three years running of the annual Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum conference and exhibition event held across different African countries. She is passionate about female entrepreneurship and women’s economic empowerment and participates widely in international meetings on women’s issues.