Maybe there is something in the name “MARK” that makes it synonymous with success in the tech industry. Today we are honoring an individual who is leaving gigantic marks in the sands of time and he is no other than Mark Essien, a leading and successful young entrepreneur in Nigeria.

Mark Essien is a software developer who runs a ₦3billion worth start-up and the CEO of, one of the most successful and biggest online hotel booking site in Nigeria which he founded in 2013.

In 2015 he made the Forbes list of 30 youngest entrepreneurs in Africa and he has also been nominated for the Nigeria Future awards amongst others and a year later, in 2016, co-invested with Jason Njoku and Spark in OgaVenue, an events booking platform. Mark Essien currently serves as a director on the board of OgaVenue.

Mark Essien, born in December 18, 1980 in Ikot Ekpene, Akwa Ibom State is only 37 years old but already has accomplished so much in his young life. He is an inspiration and a success story to youths in Nigeria and beyond the African continent and that is why we are featuring him as Rise Youth of the Week.

Our current Week Crush is more than just an entrepreneur, he is success personified who built from ground zero as a new startup to a profitable one worth over $10 million dollars. Mark is a visionary who believes in Youth empowerment and job opportunities for talented young individuals. As an enabler, investor and thought leader, he has frequently been a TedX speaker. He has delivered talks on Leveraging networks to build a business, and how Africa can lead in the global technology space at TedXEuston and TedXGbagada.

He is married to Jenni Naiaretti also a software developer and they both reside in Lagos.