Ndeye Khady Ba, manager of the artisanal bakery/pastry shop Milmais.

1. How did you enjoy participating in the Africa Entrepreneurial Summit in Ghana?

It was full of lessons, encounters and opportunities to emulate and exchange with other entrepreneurs.

 2. What were the highlights for you?

I particularly enjoyed the "branding African food for a global market" presentation. A panel of certified entrepreneurs spoke about Ghanaian cuisine with all its international flavors. They shared their successes, their failures and their journeys in general.

But it was also the opportunity to talk about my project that was a highlight. 

3. What projects or individuals left an impression on you and why?

The entrepreneurs I met are practically all working at the "local" level. Some marked me with their originality and their success. For example, the famous Fred Apaloo, a young Ghanaian entrepreneur with his restaurant Villa Grace that reinvents local cuisine. In his brunches, he makes a point of never losing the Ghanaian heart of the food, and each dish that he presents opens up to new flavors, foreign spices, and presents a unique culinary experience of fine, international cuisine.

I was also particularly interested in three very young entrepreneurs (under 25 years) with their projects on local cocoa processing. They all market chocolate, but each project is unique in its offer and presentation. They are very dynamic young people who have succeeded, in more or less 2 years, and have moved their projects from the idea phase to the marketing in supermarkets alongside major western brands.

My favorite is Dedo Azu's project, the founder of the very famous Tea Baa. It's a tiny little place where all segments of Ghanaian society meet around a refreshing tea with unique flavors and often served in a "mason jar"! It's a hidden jewel known and recognized by all. This was an example that particularly spoke to me, because I like the idea to make Milmais a well-known and popular place where every customer feels at home. 

4. What were your biggest takeaway lessons from Season 3 of the GREAT Entrepreneur competition?

I learned how to communicate more effectively to my audience.

5. What do you wish you knew before you embarked on your entrepreneurial life?

I come from a family of entrepreneurs. So from a very early age I immersed myself in this world and I already knew what to expect.

6. What advice do you have for other young entrepreneurs in Senegal?

If you have a project and you are willing to invest physically, emotionally and financially, then do it. Ignore the skeptics, and arm yourself with patience and persevere. The road will be long and strewn with pitfalls, but success is at the end.

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