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John Boyega, Zim Ugochukwu, Angelica Nwandu & More! Meet the Nigerians who made Forbes Magazine’s ’30 Under 30′ 2016 List



Let’s hear it for the amazing young people doing big things!

Forbes Magazine has released its ’30 Under 30′ list of inspiring individuals, from different areas of specialization and walks of life. On that list are 30 young entrepreneurs, entertainers & creative minds, and among those are Nigerians – Actor, John BoyegaKelechi Anyadiegwu of ZUVAA, Angelica Nwandu of The Shade Room and Zim Ugochukwu of Travel Noire.

These Nigerians have created new lanes for acting, fashion retail, social media entertainment reportage and travel that have earned them much deserved spots on this list.

Read more about them below;

John Boyega, 23, Actor

John Boyega - BellaNaija - October 2015

John is a British actor best known for playing Finn in the 2015 film Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Boyega rose to prominence in the United Kingdom for his role of Moses in the 2011 sci-fi comedy film Attack the Block before attaining international recognition for his work as Finn in the seventh film of the Star Wars series.

Some other credits include historical fiction drama film Half of a Yellow Sun (2013), four episodes of the television series 24: Live Another Day and the drama Imperial Dreams (both 2014).

Kelechi Anyadiegwu, 26, Founder of ZUVAA

Kelechi Anyadiegwu - BellaNaija - January2016
The Nigerian-American entrepreneur, who has a masters in human-computer interaction from Carnege Mellon, became frustrated after being unable to find fashionable African-inspired clothing and accessories. So she created an e-commerce destination for merchants from across the diaspora to sell their wares.

Angelica Nwandu, 25, Founder of The Shade Room

Angelica Nwandu - BellaNaija - January2016
Nwandu has revolutionized celebrity gossip with The Shade Room, which the New York Times recently dubbed “the TMZ of Instagram.” The site, which was initially published anonymously only on Instagram, currently boasts 2.5 million followers and pulls in an additional 100,000 followers every 10 days.

Zim Ugochukwu, 27, Founder of Travel Noire

Zim Ugochukwu - BellaNaija - January2016
Ugochukwu launched in 2013 after struggling to find images of young black travelers like herself on Instagram. The site now boasts a highly engaged social media presence with more than 180,000 Instagram followers, tools and tips to make traveling easier and a weekly online travel show, Travel Noire TV. Ugochukwu is at the forefront of what is being called the Black Travel Movement.

Other amazing women who also made the list include outspoken actress Zendaya, Senior Editor at Buzzfeed, Heben Nigatu; Star Little League Pitcher, Mo’Nae Davis and more.

View more names from the list and more information on the list HERE.

Jennifer is the Beauty Editor & Style Representative of Get in touch - Send an email to: beauty(at) or style(at) | Follow us on Instagram: @bellanaijabeauty OR @bellanaijastyle | Follow us on Twitter: @bellanaijastyle


  1. Kambili

    January 12, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    I love love John boyega. Was so relieved when “Ugwu” made it back from d war in half of a yellow sun. Kip shinning man!

    • Caligula

      January 12, 2016 at 5:57 pm

      I LOVE John Boyega.. Saw one of his earlier movies on sci-if last night. I wish him maximum success! ?? Interesting fact I saw online. John Boyega was best friends with Damilola Taylor, the 10yr old Nigerian boy that was murdered in London in 2000. He was the last one to see him alive before he got stabbed. They were both into acting, Damilola’s father feels he (Damilola) would probably be an actor too now, if he were alive….may continue to RIP

      Back to regularly scheduled programming!

  2. Karashika

    January 12, 2016 at 3:06 pm

    Go ladies!

  3. King Bae

    January 12, 2016 at 3:25 pm

    I can only imagine when the ShadeRoom would have time for Nigerian artists, my oh my… i’ll just leave this here… LOL.
    Young, Smart, Nigerian Breeds!!! Awesome….

  4. D

    January 12, 2016 at 5:12 pm

    This is great, so proud of these young people doing big things and living their dreams!

  5. Me

    January 12, 2016 at 7:02 pm

    They are all Nigerians in disapora. Is it that there is no Nigerian living in Nigeria that is doing great things?

    • Bella

      January 13, 2016 at 10:13 am

      my dear the question begs for an answer o!!

  6. emma

    January 12, 2016 at 7:25 pm

    The person that i’m most proud of is the owner of TSR. She’s an example of someone that came from nothing to something. I’m happy that she’s done well for herself and I hope that TSR continues to grow bigger. You guys should read up on her and be inspired.

    • Bade

      January 13, 2016 at 11:06 am

      LOVE this comment. The others came from privileged backgrounds (and are currently not running profitable businesses anyway.. do your research) but Shade Room girl is truly a zero to hero story. You go, girl.

  7. ces't moi

    January 12, 2016 at 10:09 pm

    John Boyega reminds me of a young Denzel Washington.

  8. prince

    January 13, 2016 at 12:33 pm

    Wao, he’s just 23? Amazing

  9. B(oyega) hive

    January 15, 2016 at 12:28 am

    Still no oscar noms 🙁

  10. love

    February 2, 2016 at 11:10 pm

    Wow. Angelicas story is very inspiring. I had no idea she was behind the shaderoom. Some excerpts from her buzzfeed interview ” After her mother’s death, Nwandu and her four sisters went into the foster care system in Los Angeles. “I experienced every kind of abuse you can even think of,” she said. “Sexual abuse, verbal abuse, mental abuse. That’s why I’m an advocate for foster youth — I know it’s very hard for them.”

    Nwandu credits Gayle for being part of the reason she became one of the 6% of foster kids who graduate from college with a two- or four-year degree. The other part, she said, is because she’s Nigerian. “Nigerians are some of the most successful immigrants in America,” she said. “And so when I would go to class, people would say, ‘Oh, you’re Nigerian,’ so they would expect me to be smart. Somebody expected something from me.”


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