Rosie Afia Ford

Senior Business Manager

“I joined Virgin Unite in December 2020 from GSMA Mobile for Development, where I spent six years focused on impact investing and grant management, most recently in humanitarian innovation. For more than a decade I have worked across public, private, and charity sectors with a focus on sustainable innovation, particularly around digital/mobile, humanitarian, and climate issues.

I’ve been lucky enough to visit and invest in more than 40 programmes across Africa, Asia, MENA & Latin America particularly initiatives that drive the digital inclusion of people with disabilities, refugees, and those affected by complex emergencies. As a result, I’ve developed a strong skill set around managing complex partnerships and grants for NGOs/INGOs, mobile network operators, and social enterprises / SMEs / start-ups. Previously, I have lived and managed programmes in Kenya, Morocco, South Africa, and Zambia from education to aid assistance. I continue to love my role as a digital mentor on several start-up accelerators across Iraq, East Africa, and Zambia. These experiences have helped me to develop a wealth of knowledge and expertise in forging partnerships and navigating pathways to scale in complex environments.

I sit on the board of the Kuma Foundation and have qualifications in project management and data privacy. I hold an MSc in Development Management from LSE and a BA in Economics & Politics from Leeds University, UK.