Despite the fact that most countries of the African continent suffer from extreme poverty, wealthy people also live here. Let’s take a look at the richest families and entrepreneurs and try to figure out how they have managed to achieve financial success. From business to art, from politics to religion – these are some of the richest people in Africa and Nigeria.
#1 – Aliko Dangote
One of the richest businessmen in Africa is Aliko Dangote, a citizen of Nigeria. His financial assets are estimated at $12 billion. The billionaire’s career began with a small loan that he took from his uncle. He was 21 years old and started selling construction supplies. Since then, the entrepreneur’s business has gone uphill. Aliko Dangote is ranked 51st on the Forbes list and is the richest man in Africa.
Today, Aliko Dangote is considered the king of cement and is the head of the Dangote Group with a workforce of over twelve thousand people. In addition to selling cement, the entrepreneur’s company is the largest sugar supplier in Nigeria. The entrepreneur also runs a trucking company and has a stake in the English football club Arsenal.
Aliko Dangote often acts as a sponsor and patron of the arts. During his charitable activities, donations were made to the reconstruction of the presidential library and mosque. However, there are a lot of criticism and accusations against him that all his sponsorship activities are exclusively selfish and serve to strengthen political ties.
We can confidently admit that Aliko Dangote is the first black, wealthy man from a poor country who amassed capital from production activities, making it clear to the world that production in Nigeria can be actively developed.
#2 – Ibru Family
The Ibru family is considered one of the most successful and influential families in the history of Nigeria. Some of the most prominent names of the Ibru family are Gudi Ibru who was the president of the Nigerian stock exchange for online stock trading in Nigeria and Alex Ibru who once served as a minister and founded the Guardian newspaper.
However, the most influential member of the Ibru family was Olorogun Michael Christopher Ibru. Michael was well known for starting the first African-owned fish business. He also manages the car distribution and marketing company, which was once the distributor of Mazda, Tata, and Jeep vehicles. Despite rumors of inheritance disputes, the family-owned conglomerate remains one of the largest businesses in Nigeria and owns huge stakes in Aero Contractors Airlines, Sheraton, Ikeja Hotels Plc, and others.
#3 – Nassef Sawiris
Nassef Sawiris is from Egypt; he graduated from the German School in Cairo and the University of Economics in Chicago. Nassef has a bachelor’s degree in science and is today a Vice President of Orsakom Corporation, which was founded by his father. In the early 1990s, the company played the role of a major cement producer. Further, the Sawiris family continues to grow and invest in young businesses around the world. At the end of 1995, under the leadership of Nassef, the Orascom corporation merged with the Holcim company, which was practically a monopoly in the field of cement production.
As a result, the Egyptian Cement Company conglomerate was formed, 54% of whose shares belong to Nassef and his brother. Today, the company of the Sawiris brothers produces at least 26 million tons of building mixture per year, which makes them one of the largest suppliers of building materials in the world market.
#4 – Nicky Oppenheimer
Nicky Oppenheimer heads one of the largest diamond miners in the world. Oppenheimer’s revenue was over $6 billion in 2017, and it keeps growing every year. However, according to the updated laws of South Africa, Nick gives 26% of the mined diamonds to the state. If it were not for the changes in the laws of South Africa, Oppenheimer would be the richest businessman in the world. Nicky Oppenheimer could even boost his credits if he took part in Forex trading.
One of the richest people in South Africa currently holds the post of chairman of the diamond mining corporation De Beers, whose field of activity includes diamond mining, processing, and cutting of precious stones. In addition to his main company, Oppenheimer has a stake in a precious metals mining corporation. De Beers was founded by Ernest Oppenheimer, Nicky’s grandfather. He was the first chairman of this company from the Oppenheimer family. Since then, the position of chairman of the board has passed to his grandson – Nicky.
Some Other Big Names
Apart from the above, the list of the richest people in Nigeria includes some other successful entrepreneurs:
- Christoffel Wiese, with a net worth of $2.7 billion. The man is the head of Shoprite, a chain of stores of over 1,000 throughout South Africa.
- Moroccan entrepreneur Osman Benjeloun, whose assets are $2.6 billion. Benjeloun is over 80 years old and is the owner of a large insurance company.
- Patrice Motsepe is the owner of a $2.65 billion non-ferrous metals company.
- Mohamed Mansour is the owner of a tobacco factory and supermarket chain with a fortune of $2.2 billion.
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