Africa’s top Billionaires in 2019

Kylie Kiunguyu | This Is Africa |

Aliko Dangote, Chairman of Dangote Group and Patrice Motsepe at Africa Investment Forum. (Photos:GCIS)

This year Forbes released a list of the wealthiest individuals on the African continent. The tycoons who made the list were worth $68.7 billion, making an average net worth of $3.4 billion per person.

Earlier this year Forbes released a list of the wealthiest individuals on the African continent. The tycoons who made the list were worth $68.7 billion, making an average net worth of $3.4 billion per person.

Country wise, Egypt and South Africa had the highest number of representatives with five billionaires each, Nigeria followed with four and Morocco with two. Additionally, the list had one billionaire each from Algeria, Angola, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.

The two women who made the list were Isabel dos Santos at #8 with a net worth of $2.3 Billion and Folorunsho Alakija at #19 with a net worth of $1.1 Billion. While the youngest on the list was 44 year old Mohammed Dewji at #14 with a net worth of $1.9 Billion.

The complete list is as follows:

Rank #1

Aliko Dangote

Net Worth= $10.3 Billion, Age: 62, Source of Wealth: Cement, Sugar, flour

  • Aliko Dangote, Africa’s richest man, founded and chairs Dangote Cement, the continent’s largest cement producer.
  • He owns nearly 85% of publicly-traded Dangote Cement through a holding company.
  • Dangote Cement produces 45.6 million metric tons annually and has operations in 10 countries across Africa.
  • Dangote also owns stakes in publicly-traded salt, sugar and flour manufacturing companies.
  • Dangote Refinery has been under construction for three years and is expected to be one of the world’s largest oil refineries once complete.

Rank #2

Mike Adenuga

Net Worth= $9.2 Billion, Age: 66, Source of Wealth: Telecom, Oil

  • Adenuga, Nigeria’s second richest man, built his fortune in telecom and oil production.
  • His mobile phone network, Globacom, is the third largest operator in Nigeria, with 43 million subscribers.
  • His oil exploration outfit, Conoil Producing, operates 6 oil blocks in the Niger Delta.
  • Adenuga got an MBA at Pace University in New York, supporting himself as a student by working as a taxi driver.
  • He made his first million at age 26 selling lace and distributing soft drinks.

Rank #3

Nicky Oppenheimer
  • Oppenheimer, heir to his family’s fortune, sold his 40% stake in diamond firm DeBeers to mining group Anglo American for $5.1 billion in cash in 2012.
  • He was the third generation of his family to run DeBeers, and took the company private in 2001.
  • For 85 years until 2012, the Oppenheimer family occupied a controlling spot in the world’s diamond trade.
  • In 2014, Oppenheimer started Fireblade Aviation in Johannesburg, which operates chartered flights with its fleet of 3 planes and 2 helicopters.
  • He owns at least 720 square miles of conservation land across South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe.

Net Worth= $7.3 Billon, Age: 74, Source of Wealth: Diamonds

Rank #4

Nassef Sawiris

Net Worth= $6.3 Billion, Age: 58, Source of Wealth: Construction, Chemicals

  • Nassef Sawiris is a scion of Egypt’s wealthiest family. His brother Naguib is also a billionaire.
  • Sawiris split Orascom Construction Industries into two entities in 2015: OCI and Orascom Construction.
  • He runs OCI, one of the world’s largest nitrogen fertilizer producers, with plants in Texas and Iowa; it trades on the Euronext Amsterdam exchange.
  • Orascom Construction, an engineering and building firm, trades on the Cairo exchange and Nasdaq Dubai.
  • His holdings include stakes in cement giant Lafarge Holcim and Adidas; he sits on the supervisory board of Adidas.

Rank #5

Johann Rupert

Net Worth= $5.3 Billion, Age: 69, Source of Wealth: Luxury Goods

  • Johann Rupert is chairman of Swiss luxury goods firm Compagnie Financiere Richemont.
  • The company is best known for the brands Cartier and Montblanc.
  • It was formed in 1998 through a spinoff of assets owned by Rembrandt Group Limited (now Remgro Limited), which his father Anton formed in the 1940s.
  • He owns a 7% stake in diversified investment firm Remgro, which he chairs, as well as 25% of Reinet, an investment holding co. based in Luxembourg.
  • In recent years, Rupert has been a vocal opponent of plans to allow fracking in the Karoo, a region of South Africa where he owns land.

Rank #6

Issad Rebrab

Net Worth= $3.7 Billion, Age: 75, Source of Wealth: Food

  • Issad Rebrab is the founder and CEO of Cevital, Algeria’s biggest privately-held company.
  • Cevital owns one of the largest sugar refineries in the world, with the capacity to produce 2 million tons a year.
  • Cevital owns European companies, including French home appliances maker Groupe Brandt, an Italian steel mill and a German water purification company.
  • Rebrab has plans to build a steel mill in Brazil to produce train tracks and improve transportation logistics for sugar, corn and soy flour exports.
  • His five children work at Cevital.

Rank #7

Naguib Sawiris

Net Worth= $2.9 Billion, Age: 65, Source of Wealth: Telecom

  • Naguib Sawiris is a scion of Egypt’s wealthiest family. His brother Nassef is also a billionaire.
  • He built a fortune in telecom, selling Orascom Telecom in 2011 to Russian telecom firm VimpelCom (now Veon) in a multibillion-dollar transaction.
  • He’s chairman of Orascom Telecom Media & Technology–renamed Orascom Investment Holding to reflect investments in other sectors.
  • Family holding La Mancha has stakes in Evolution Mining, Endeavour Mining and Golden Star Resources, which operate gold mines in Africa and Australia.
  • In 2017, he shifted ownership of La Mancha to his mother, Yousriya Loza-Sawiris, for estate planning purposes.

Rank #8

Koos Bekker

Net Worth= $2.3 Billion, Age: 66, Source of Wealth: Media, Investments

  • Koos Bekker is revered for transforming South African newspaper publisher Naspers into an ecommerce investor & cable TV powerhouse.
  • He led Naspers to invest in Chinese Internet and media firm Tencent in 2001 — by far the most profitable of the bets he made on companies elsewhere.
  • Naspers has a 31% stake in Tencent, and Bekker serves as a non-executive director at the Chinese company.
  • It sold a 2% stake in Tencent in March 2018, its first time reducing its holding, but stated at the time it would not sell again for 3 years.
  • Bekker, who retired as the CEO of Naspers in March 2014, returned as chairman in April 2015.

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