Pauline Otila

Managing Director, Apiculture Venture Limited, Kenya

Pauline is a seasoned professional apiculturist with strong working knowledge and experience in business operations in the modern beekeeping industry. She is the Founder and Managing Director of Apiculture Venture Limited, a company established in July 2018. She has a long track in the management of, and training in, modern beekeeping techniques, honey handling and processing, and beehive products value addition and marketing. She dared to use the skills and experience she had gained as an employee for 13 years in a beekeeping company to venture into this male-dominated industry, adopting the moniker, ‘Queen Bee’. In the five years of operation, she has managed to position Apiculture Venture Limited among the top 5 key players in the Kenyan beekeeping industry.

She is passionate about enterprising in beekeeping and honey production. She extends her ambition as a social cause and economic empowerment drive in the Kenyan ASALs where there is high potential for honey production yet poverty levels are still high. She runs the “Inspiring New Generation” initiative that encourages youths to adopt agribusiness as an alternative career option and the ‘Save Bees, Save Nature’ initiative to promote sustainable beekeeping. Through the ‘Modern Beekeeping for Improved Livelihoods’ initiative, she aims at boosting household food resilience by reducing the number of food-insecure Kenyans. The program targets vulnerable youth and women for training, mentorship, and building awareness on modern beekeeping, honey, and beehive products processing and value addition. It supports honey production as a business through; the provision of modern beekeeping equipment and technical support, access to the market for guaranteed income through a buy-back model, encouraging honey processing as a way of value addition, and ensuring food-insecure households have sustainable income that will guarantee access to sufficient and nutritious food. This project won the 2022 USADF-Stanbic 50,000USD Grant Award.

She is a graduate of, and current mentor at, the U.S-led initiative, the Academy of Women Entrepreneurs (AWE). She is a mentee of the 2022/23 UNFAO Accelerator Mentorship Programme for Women-led SMEs. She participated in the 2023 NextGen TechCamp Nairobi organized by the Bureau of Educational & Cultural Affairs (ECA) at the U.S. Department of State. She is one of the Top 50 African Business Heroes 2023 Finalists. She has been recognized among the Top 25 Global Finalists for 2023 WE Empower UN SDG Challenge and among the Top 5 incredible entrepreneurs in Sub-Saharan Africa advancing SDGs through their businesses. She has been shortlisted for the 2023 Cohort of the E4Impact. She holds an MBA, Strategic Management Degree from Daystar University, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce.