(CNN)According to Google CEO Eric Schmidt, "great innovators and great companies see the space that others don't."
But we'd also add that innovators demonstrate an awe-inspiring level of perseverance and commitment to their ideas, overcoming many obstacles to bring us their new methods and products.
The annual gathering of the African Leadership Network is a great place to spot them. This year, in early November, 350 heads of business, social enterprises and entrepreneurs met in Marrakech under the theme "Exploring the Boundaries of Possibilities in Africa."
Here are five individuals -- managing organizations of various sizes -- who caught our eye at ALN2015.
Munyaradzi Gwatidzo, AstroMobile
Munyaradzi Gwatidzo's story proves that it's not how you begin that counts but how you finish.
As an orphan growing up in one of Zimbabwe's poorest suburbs, Gwatidzo was very interested in electronics and would collect broken and discarded phones out of the litter. With three siblings to care for, Gwatidzo taught himself to repair phones. At 19 he sold his first one -- a Nokia 3310.
After buying, repairing and selling mobile phones in neighboring Zambia for a few years, Gwatidzo then seized the opportunity in 2011 to build his own brand, Astro Mobile.