Kunle Olukotun

June 5, 2024
5 min read

Early life

Kunle Olukotun is a Nigerian-born immigrant Computer scientist, who is the Cadence Systems Professor of the stanford School of Engineering. He is passionate about sustainability, responsibility and community relations. He was also named one of Crain’s 40 Under 40 in 2007.

Olukotun is known as the “father of the multi-core processor”, and the leader of the Stanford Hydra Chip Multiprocessor research project.

In 2017 Olukotun and Chris Ré founded SambaNova Systems. SambaNova Systems is developing a next-generation computing platform to power machine learning and data analytics.[[18]](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kunle_Olukotun#cite_note-18) Olukotun now leads the Stanford Pervasive Parallelism Lab, which focuses on making heterogeneous parallel computing easy to use, and he is a member of the Data Analytics for What’s Next (DAWN) Lab, which is developing infrastructure for usable machine learning.

Education

Olukotun did his undergraduate studies at Calvin College,[[13]](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kunle_Olukotun#cite_note-udc-13) in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He earned an MS (1987) and PhD (1991) from University of Michigan, in Computer Science and Engineering. Olukotun joined stanford’s Department of Electical Engineering in 1991. while at Stanford, Olukotun became the leader of the Stanford Hydra Chip multiprocessor (CMP) research project which allowed for the development of multiprocessors with support for thread-level speculation.

SambaNova Systems

SambaNova Systems is proud to highlight Black Excellence, a series of profiles on Black founders who are committed to uplifting, supporting and empowering the Black community. The series aims to align Blackfounders with the world’s fast-growing markets, as well as to equip them with education and resources.

Kunle Olukotun SambaNova Systems.

SambaNova Systems was founded by Kunle Olukotun and Saffue Ofce Limited in 2014. It focuses on the growth of small businesses in Africa, with a focus on emerging markets like Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, and South Africa. The aim of SambaNova Systems is to provide its members with services that will help them succeed in the online world.

SambaNova Systems is a marketing and content website for Black entrepreneurs that connects businesses from all over the world. The site is used by thousands of aspiring Black entrepreneurs, who use it to share information, advertise their businesses, find events, new contacts, and much more.

Kunle’s publishing company grew out of an online web novel he created in 1999, which later made him one of the world’s leading African tech companies. In 2000, he founded his SambaNova Systems with his business partner, Nino Gunlo. SambaNova Systems is a publisher founded as the publisher of Kunle Olukotun’s Black Renaissance series. Our success depends on Mr. Olukotun’s ability to diversify his interests and enter new markets while maintaining control of his own various businesses. In 2004, SambaNova Systems partnered with two other publishers to launch AfricaOneBooks, offering online titles of African literature including music and video clips. Kunle Olukotun, an underrepresented in the African tech sector, has so far found a company that has attracted over $100 million in investments.

Awards

He is also on the software development team for an award-winning video He created the game Black Secret Agent Global Online Entertainment. He runs a publishing company and a technology company. The intellectual property behind the company’s success can be attributed to Olukotun’s ability to generate multiple revenue streams. Olukotun has a strong sense of who he is and where he comes from, demonstrating that he is an entrepreneur to watch.

He says of himself, “I am a self-made entrepreneur. I started off as a small-time writer, now I own publishing and IT companies. I do what the hell I want to do.”

Kunle Olukotun has become one of the leading African tech entrepreneurs and is an example of #BlackExcellence at its best.

Kunle Olukotun is part of our Black Founders50 Series. Download the complete 2023 BBVA Founders50 list here.

BBVA envisions a vibrant Canadian technology ecosystem with significant participation from members of the Black community. We are on a mission to help establish 1000 successful, Black-led tech and tech-enabled businesses in Canada by 2030.

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