Kanya King CBE
Kanya King CBE is an internationally recognised entrepreneur and innovator in the British music industry. As CEO and founder of MOBO Organisation, Kanya is the dynamic force behind the MOBO Awards. An inspiring speaker, Kanya brings critical business messages to life, underpinned by a determination to succeed and an infallible work ethic.
Kanya King is living proof of the old adage that a genuine leader moulds, rather than seeks, consensus. An internationally renowned entrepreneur, Kanya has – through her role as CEO, founder and visionary of the iconic MOBO platform – displayed the drive and ambition needed to help take urban music from the margins of British popular culture to the heart of the mainstream culture, not just in the UK but around the world.
Following her studies in English Literature at the renowned Goldsmiths College, London, Kanya took up a job as a TV researcher where she soon identified a gap in the market for a mainstream British awards ceremony celebrating music influenced and inspired by black music.
Since its inception in 1996, Kanya has built MOBO into a globally respected brand. With Kanya’s expert guidance, the MOBO organisation has established itself as a champion of diversity, inclusion and recognition for talent within music, culture, arts, fashion, media and larger society as a whole.
Kanya was recently presented with a CBE and has been acclaimed as one of UK’s Most Influential People. She’s hugely in-demand as a media figure and a go-to person for public speaking at community, educational and corporate events.
She has received a number of honorary Doctorates and Fellowships from universities across the country with more recently a Doctorate of Music from SOAS at their 100th graduation ceremony – she was consequently invited to preside over the 101st ceremony in the absence of their President, Mrs. Graca Machel, widow of Nelson Mandela.
Early November 2018 she was presented with the Legacy Award at the inaugural Investing in Diversity Awards. 2019 will see her active in a number of areas to the benefit of both emerging talent and the wider creative and business communities.
Kanya has spoken for companies such as HSBC, Morgan Stanley and the Scottish Institute for Enterprise. She also became part of the Inspire and Mentor Campaign for Marie Claire. She has also been awarded several accolades, such as being listed in Debretts 500 list in 2016 and as one of the Evening Standard’s 1000 most influential people.
The determination that Kanya has shown throughout her career is enough to inspire any audience, her experience creating and organising one of the UK’s biggest events in the music industry has led her to become an accomplished business keynote speaker.