7 female managers behind Afrobeats' Biggest Stars


As the saying goes "Behind every successful man, there is a woman".

While the spotlight often shines on the talented artists shaping the Afrobeats landscape, it's crucial to acknowledge the unsung heroines behind the scenes – the female managers who play pivotal roles in the success of some of the genre's biggest stars. These prolific women have years of experience and bring their A-game to building the careers of artists like Tiwa Savage, Burna Boy, Joeboy, Adekunle Gold, and many others. These women have pushed and are still pushing the barrier of a male-dominated Afrobeat business.

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Afrobeat the business is still predominately seen as a man's world, however, here are 7 powerful executive female talent managers behind some of afrobeats biggest stars

1. Mariam Abass

Mariam Abass

Mariam Abass started as a civil engineering student before the oil market began to fall apart. This was the trajectory she needed to move into the entertainment sector. The Entertainment mogul started Malcagency (her brand management). Her sufficient team is a group of women. During her interview with Business Day, Mariam gave her key secret to being a great talent manager. She said, "The key part of management is having great artists to manage. There are some people that you cannot manage and that’s a problem".

She has worked with Davido and Mr Eazi. She currently manages Joeboy. When asked about the challenges she has faced in the industry during an interview, she said, "Being a woman in the industry is challenging. You often meet people who would want to undermine your experience or position".

2. Bose Ogulu

Bose Ogulu

Bose Ogulu is a Nigerian businesswoman, talent manager, and mother to the African Gaint Burna Boy. Mama Burna started officially working as Burna Boy's manager when he released his single in 2010. She bagged him a record deal from Aristokrat Records in 2012. She served as CEO of Language Bridges and ran a music school out of her home for years.

Working hand in hand with Burna Boy, they both have been able to bring home a slew of awards. In addition to managing Burna Boy, the mother of three also manages her daughter Nissi's career. She was awarded the History Maker Award 2023 at the Best of Africa Awards ceremony in London. Burna Boy has won many career awards such as the Grammy award, BET award, MOBO award, AFRIMMA, Headies, and many more.

3. Jada P

Jada Pollock

Jada Pollock, also known as Jada P, is a renowned music manager and business tycoon hailing from the United States. Widely recognized as a highly acclaimed image guru by The Daily Star and West London Living, she is not only the talent manager for the popular Nigerian artist Wizkid, but also the mother of two of his children. Originally known as Jada Styles, she rebranded after partnering with the football star, Didier Drogba to launch her boutique and fashion business under the name Jada Styles.

In addition to her role in managing Wizkid, she has successfully overseen the careers of other top celebrities in the music industry, including Chris Brown. In an interview with Native, she was questioned about her most crucial role in Wizkid's career. Jada P emphasized that, given Wizkid's musical genius, her primary focus is on facilitating his journey to his ultimate creative peak. Creating an environment of peace, and positive energy, and ensuring the presence of the best team around him are integral to allowing him to be the best version of himself and excel in his craft.

4. Elizabeth Sobowale

Elizabeth Sobowale

Elizabeth Sobowale is one of the many hands behind the transformation of Adekunle Gold-- from an artist to a brand--AG Baby. She started working in talent management at the age of 21-fresh out of university. In 2022, she was appointed as the program director of the Music Business Academy for Africa.

Elizabeth boasts an extensive experience gained from her tenure in PR agencies and a seven-year stint as DJ Cuppy's manager. Presently managing Adekunle Gold, she is the proprietor of Brand & Stitch, a consulting agency. Her fervent dedication to advancing the creative industry is evident in her position as Program Director at MBA Africa.

5. Vanessa Amadi-Ogbonna

Vanessa Amadi-Ogbonna

Vanessa Amadi-Ogbonna has worked in the music industry for 25 years. She is the manager for the Queen of Afrobeats, Tiwa Savage. In addition to being a manager, she has worked with Big names in the music industry such as Davido, Whitney Houston, Tiwa Savage, The MOBO Awards, Estelle, Ashluxe, and Genevieve Nnaji. She started as Tiwa Savage's PR personnel before moving on to the role of manager.

Vanessa is also one of the executive producers for Tiwa's upcoming debut film, Water and Garri. She organized Davido's sold-out performance at the famous O2 in 2019. In addition to being a talent manager, she is also a mother. She gave birth to her first son in 2014. Vanessa Amadi had promised to make Davido a star on her wedding day and has since made that possible. During her interview with Anita Erskine, she said "People think that working in events or PR is glamourous. It looks glamorous on the outside but there's so much more that goes into it".

6. Isioma Nwaruocha

Isioma Nwaruocha

Currently holding the position of Head of Promotions at one of Nigeria's leading music and entertainment companies, Chocolate City Music, Isioma is also a valued member of one of Nigeria's foremost music-producing mega houses, Chocolate City Group. Within this influential organization, she manages Young Jonn, a gifted record producer who has seamlessly transitioned into the role of an artist. Simultaneously, Isioma fulfills the responsibilities of an A&R, dedicated to enhancing Young Jonn's sound and public presence.

Isioma played a pivotal role in promoting viral hits like Ckay's Emiliana, a sensation on the popular app TikTok. Her responsibilities also extended to the successful promotion of tracks such as Young Jonn's Xtra Cool, Omah Lay's I'm a Mess, and Ckay's Love Nwantiti, among numerous others. Having dedicated four years to Chocolate City Group, Isioma is a dedicated and hardworking professional within the music industry.

7. Morin Oluwatobi

Morin Oluwatobi

Morin Oluwatobi is affiliated with Chocolate City and oversees the career of the rapidly ascending Nigerian hip-hop artist, Blaqbonez. A graduate in computer science from Yaba College of Technology, Lagos, Morin plays a pivotal role in the music industry.

Morin is a champion of women. In addition to being the manager for Blaqbonez, she also gives master classes on being a force within the entertainment industry. In 2023, she was a speaker at the first edition of HER Sound. The event is aimed at celebrating and empowering female voices in the music industry.