LAGOS, Nigeria (VOICE OF NAIJA) — In spite of many odds that limit the attainment of potential at home, Nigerians are stepping forward to register themselves in the global hall of fame in the tech industry. Today, there are Nigerians pulling major weight in major tech companies in Silicon Valley.
We took the time to compile a list of five Nigerians who have established themselves in the Silicon Valley tech circuit, providing innovative solutions for a better society.
Ms. Morin Oluwole | Global Head of Luxury for Meta, Inc.
Morin Oluwole was born in Lagos, Nigeria, where she lived with her parents and younger sister until her parents split in her early teens. She grew up learning how to navigate different cultural perspectives, environments, and worldviews. She went to college at Stanford in California, where she obtained a BA and MA in both human biology and sociology and an MA in management from Columbia University.
Morin is the global head of luxury at Meta, where she manages Facebook and Instagram’s global luxury client partnerships. Morin is committed to diversity, leadership, mentorship, and inclusion, with a career spanning over 17 years.
Morin speaks five languages and has lived on three different continents. She joined Facebook when it was a small startup of 200 people. A woman driven enough to enter an industry that had not been, let’s say, the most receptive to hiring women at the time, Morin created for herself a singular avenue to success from the moment she joined the start-up.
Today, Morin is an industry thought leader in digital transformation, business development, luxury, and innovation. She is known for expressing expert points of view on business, Africa, entrepreneurship, mentoring, luxury, and innovation.
Mr. Ime Archibong | Head of New Product Experimentation and VP Product Partnerships for Meta, Inc.
Ime Archibong is a seasoned product and business development technology executive at Meta Platforms, Inc., which used to be known as Facebook, Inc. Archibong has served as Meta’s Vice President, Product Partnerships, since March 2023. from August 2019 until March 2023.
Archibong, as Meta’s Head of New Product Experimentation, led an internal constituency of entrepreneurs testing new standalone experiences. Prior to that role, Mr. from November 2010 to June 2020 Archibong held roles of increasing responsibility at International Business Machines (IBM), including serving on the Advanced Technology Business Development team focused on the future of storage, the Corporate Strategy team laying the foundation for IBM’s Smarter Cities initiative, and as a software engineer in the Systems and Technology Group.
Archibong and his team are focused on accelerating Meta’s product strategy and unlocking new business opportunities through partnerships and product integrations. Archibong is currently the highest-ranking black person within Meta Platforms, Inc.
Archibong was born in Kansas but was raised in North Carolina with his Nigerian-born parents, who are both professors.
Mr. Aniedi Udo-Obong | Program Manager and Software Developer in Mountain View, California
Udo-Obong is an experienced program manager with a demonstrated history of working in the technology industry across Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and, more recently, North America (NA). He has provided international opportunities for other Nigerian developers and technical talent. Udo-Obong regularly comes across entrepreneurs overflowing with ideas in his role at Google. His role includes building relationships with developers to boost the sector across Africa.
Aniedi Udo-Obong believes there is a lack of Nigerian role models in the industry, with most people still pointing to figures like Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg. However, because of industry events sponsored by the likes of Google, more graduates recognize the tech sector as a practical way to make a living and launch their own technology firms.
Udo-Obong is currently the US and Canada Regional Lead for Google’s flagship developer community offerings, Google Developer Groups (GDG) and Google Developer Experts (GDE), driving awareness, adoption, advocacy, and feedback for Google’s products and platforms, as well as open technologies for mobile, web, cloud, and machine learning.
Mr. Olaoluwa Okelola | Software Engineer for Meta, Inc.
Olaoluwa Okelola works at Meta Platform, Inc. as one of the few software developers who was born in Nigeria. Olaoluwa worked as an engineering intern at Google from May 2006 until he joined Facebook in 2007. Prior to that, he was an intern at Microsoft.
Olaoluwa completed his secondary education at the International School Ibadan and then proceeded to Avi-Cenna International School and Howard University, Washington, DC, to complete his secondary and university education, respectively. He holds a degree in systems and computer science.
Olaoluwa is friends with Meta Platform Inc. CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
Ms. Bunmi Banjo | Managing Director, Kuvora Inc
Bunmi started her career at Google as the Head of SMB Marketing, Google Nigeria. She is an alumnus of the University of Toronto, where she majored in psychology and biology. She is also the founder and CEO of Kuvora, Inc. She is a technology leadership and future of work speaker and adviser. Bunmi is currently a member of the advisory board of the Center for Excellence in Data for Society, University of Arizona.
With her over 20 years of experience in North America, Asia, and Africa, Ms. Banjo helps the world’s leading organizations design, scale, and implement highly impactful strategies that result in formidable competitive advantage. Prior to her current work at Kuvora, she led Google’s efforts to equip millions of youths and SMEs with digital skills for job and business growth.
The presence of these exceptional Nigerians calling shots at these huge tech companies in Silicon Valley demonstrates that Nigerians are the smartest individuals on the planet. Nigerians, on the other hand, can do more to become more by pursuing their aspirations and trying to achieve extraordinary heights.