Once you reach a couple of billion dollars, the world starts to take notice.
Forbes has released its latest list of Africa’s richest people – a chronicle of the billionaires (not rand billionaires, but dollar billionaires) who are worth the kind of money that you only think about if you’re sitting down.
While the continent can’t compete with the likes of Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg, we’re still doing pretty well.
Africa has 54 nations, but only eight countries have billionaires.
South Africa and Egypt dominate not only the top 10 richest people in Africa list, but the rankings overall with five billionaires each. Nigeria comes in second with four, including Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote.
Let’s check out the top 10, starting with the two richest men in Africa:
Aliko Dangote, Nigeria
Aliko Dangote of Nigeria is the richest person in Africa, worth an estimated $10,1 billion (down from $10,3 billion a year ago). He comes in at 136 on Forbes’ ‘world’s richest’ list.
That’s roughly R149 billion, folks. Take a minute to process that number.
His worth dropped last year due to a slightly lower stock price for Dangote Cement, his largest holding. He’s now worth exactly the same amount as when he first ranked on ‘Africa’s richest’ list in 2011, but less than half what he was worth in 2014.
This handy graph maps his progress through the years:
Nassef Sawiris, Egypt
Nassef Sawiris is the year’s biggest gainer, taking up his position as the second richest man in Africa for the first time.
He’s worth $8 billion, up from $6,3 billion last year.
Sawiris’ most valuable asset is a 5.7% stake in shoemaker Adidas worth a bit more than $4 billion. The increase in Adidas’ share price alone added nearly $1.5 billion to his fortune since January 2019.
He also owns a large stake in fertilizer producer OCI N.V.
Last year, Sawiris purchased the remaining stake they didn’t already own in Premier League team Aston Villa.
Buying football clubs seems to be a popular move for African billionaires.
On to the rest of the top 10 billionaires list, also via Forbes.
The stats below show the ranking, name, net worth, age and origin of wealth for each billionaire, in that order.
South African billionaires on that list include Nicky Oppenheimer at number three (tied with Nigeria’s Mike Adenuga). He’s heir to the Oppenheimer fortune and owns 720 square miles of conservation land across South Africa, Botswana, and Zimbabwe.
Cape Town’s Johann Rupert, chairman of Swiss luxury goods firm Compagnie Financiere Richemont, comes in at number five.
Joburg-based Patrice Motsepe rounds off the top 10. He’s the founder and chairman of African Rainbow Minerals. He became a billionaire in 2008, at the time making him the first black African on the Forbes list.
Koos Bekker comes in at number 11, with a net worth of $2,5 billion.
For the rest of the list, go here.
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