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Shirley Gilbey

Head of Rise and Co-Creation at Barclays Africa


Shirley Gilbey is Head of Rise and Co-Creation at Barclays Africa Group Limited responsible for driving partnership with the world’s best and brightest start-ups and experts to create the future of Barclays Africa. A founding member of Rise in Africa, she also manages the Barclays Accelerator in Cape Town responsible for defining opportunities for the selected start-ups to partner with the Barclays Africa’ businesses across the continent. Passionate about working with both late stage start-ups looking to scale and early stage ventures trying to gain market traction, with specific interest in (all) tech innovation. Coupling a strong academic background and having started her career as a Human Genetist in a clinical laboratory start-up, Shirley took the venture capital-backed company through a successful exit prior to completing her MBA at Leeds University Business School in the UK prior to redirecting her career to focus on supporting start-ups and SMEs in her native South Africa. The internal co-founder of the Barclays Digital Academy in Johannesburg, Shirley believes that Africa has the brightest talent to solve for our unique African challenges and looks forward to helping FinTech entrepreneurs grow and scale across the continent in partnership with Barclays Africa.