The first $1 million given away by Jack Mack for his Netpreneur Prize is from the Alibaba founder's $10 million decade-long prize fund dedicated to source out Africa's most promising young business visionaries.
Ten young business-minded Africans shared the $1 million award in the first of the ten funds to back up Jack Ma's decade-long interest in the district's new companies.
The top prize, worth $250,000, went to Temie Giwa-Tubosun, founder and CEO of LifeBank Nigeria, a health care technology and logistics company based in Lagos.
Second and third prize winners got $150,000 and $100,000 respectively, while the other seven young business visionaries each got $65,000.
Ma set up this $10 million prize fund in 2018 with the purpose of discovering 100 young African business people over 10 years, with 10 "business legends" chosen every year, as a means of selecting new companies in the country with the potential of becoming the next Alibaba or Google.
On Saturday, he was in Ghana to present the winners of the prize as witnessed by Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo and previous UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon.
It was Ma's fourth visit to Africa.
He said he always gets to meet the most amazing young business people that he calls the future of their economy and that it's evident from their faces the vitality and certainty of what's to come.
He added that entrepreneurs always challenge things other individuals don't think will work.
During the award, Ma also told the story of how the worlds' largest online retailer, Alibaba, got built.
Comparing Africa to China 20 years ago, Ma, who is a special adviser for young business visionaries and small businesses on the UN Conference on Trade and Development, stated that the absence of online business and logistics as "the opportunity."
He said that for Africa to tackle its problems and have sustainable growth, business people should unite.
Ma reiterated the "four Es" which are important for the future of Africa: education, e-government, e-infrastructure and entrepreneurship.
Mama, 55, stepped down as Alibaba's chairman on his birthday in September to dedicate time and effort to his charities.
He handed over his post to CEO Daniel Zhang.
Ma will stay on the Alibaba board of directors until the 2020 shareholders meeting.
President Akufo-Addo acknowledged Ma as an iconic figure, regarding him as another Aliko Dangote, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Larry Page and Mark Zuckerberg.
He added that successful economies depend on business people running successful organizations.