In this article, we discuss the 15 Richest People in Africa. If you want to skip our detailed analysis of the African economy, go directly to the 5 Richest People in Africa.
The African economy is booming as we see more and more intensive economic activities around the continent. With a nominal GDP of $2.9 trillion, analysts predict that in the coming decades, miraculous progress would be observed through the African landscape.
“By 2050, African GDP is expected to surpass $29 trillion. In 2018, Forbes listed some 23 individuals with a net worth of more than a billion-dollar. Africa’s billionaires come from seven different countries. South Africa and Egypt each share five billionaires, with Nigeria and Morocco each having three. The top 15 richest African billionaires accumulated a combined net worth of $76 billion.”
The African economy witnessed a contraction of 2.1% during 2020. However, African billionaires, much like their counterparts in the rest of the world, saw their wealth grow by more than 12%. If you look at the areas of the economy where these billionaires are concentrated, you will find industries like vehicle manufacturing, oil production, real estate development, telecom sector, luxury goods, etc.
As the African economy recovers, these high-net-worth individuals will see an even bigger spike in their wealth. African GDP will witness an economic recovery during the fiscal year 2021, with an estimated growth rate of 3.4%.
Our Ranking Criteria For Richest People in Africa
Forbes is definitively the go-to place when dealing with high-net-worth individuals and companies. We took cues from Forbes’s wealthiest individuals list of 2021 for our list of richest people in Africa.
15 Richest People in Africa
15) Othman Benjelloun (Morocco)
Net worth: $1.3 billion (2021)
Othman Benjelloun is the CEO of BMCE (Moroccan Bank for External Trade) that has operations in over 20 African countries and his main source of wealth. Othman’s father owned a stake in RMA, a Moroccan insurance company, which Benjelloun grew into a leading insurer of the country. Othman also owns stakes in the Moroccan arm of French telecom company Orange through his investment company FinanceCom. FinanceCom is also part of the multi-billion dollars tech city project in Tangiers, Morocco. Othman Benjelloun also holds the position of Honorary Trustee in CSIS (Center for Strategic & International Studies). Othman has also invested his wealth into philanthropic causes involving education and environmental conservation.
14) Youssef Mansour (Egypt)
Net worth: $1.5 billion (2021)
Youssef Mansour is chairman of the family-owned conglomerate Mansour Group, which was founded by his father Loutfy Mansour in 1952. Mansour Group is one of the largest conglomerates in Africa, operating in more than a hundred countries and generating a revenue of $7.5 billion. Mansour Group is the exclusive distributor of GM (NYSE: GM) vehicles and Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT) equipment in Egypt and several other countries. Over the years, Mansour Group has become a very powerful conglomerate, making deals and investments in multiple sectors. Its clientele includes the likes of General Motors, Philips Morris (NYSE: PM), McDonald (NYSE: MCD), etc. It also holds the distribution rights of major IT and Telecom companies including IBM (NYSE: IBM), Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT), Hewlett Packard (NYSE: HPE). His younger brothers Mohamed and Yasseen are also billionaires and partial owners of Mansour Group.
13) Mohammed Dewji (Tanzania)
Net worth: $1.6 billion (2021)
Mohammed Dewji is the CEO of METL (Mohammad Enterprises Tanzania Limited), a Tanzanian conglomerate founded by his father in the 1970s. Dewji first came to headlines when he was kidnapped in Darussalam (Tanzania) in October 2018, but he was released after 9 days. METL is active in textile manufacturing, flour milling, beverages, and edible oils in eastern, southern, and central Africa. METL operates in six African countries and has ambitions to expand to several more. Dewji is Tanzania’s only billionaire and has signed the Giving Pledge in 2016, promising to donate at least half his fortune to philanthropic causes.
12) Aziz Akhannouch (Morocco)
Net worth: $2 billion (2021)
Aziz Akhannouch is Morocco’s Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries and the largest shareholder in the Akwa Group, a multibillion-dollar conglomerate established in 1932 by his father. Via publicly-traded Afriquia Gaz and Maghreb Oxygene, it has investments in diversified petroleum products such as coal and chemicals. Lately, Aziz has also ventured into the media by acquiring Caractères, a respected name in the Morocco media industry. Aziz is also the second wealthiest man in Morocco.
11) Mohamed Mansour (Egypt)
Net worth: $2.5 billion (2021)
Like his brother Youseff, Mohamed Mansour oversees the Mansour Group, a family-owned conglomerate. Founder of Mansour Group Mr. Loutfy Mansour started out from humble beginnings, and his three sons have now turned it into a $7.5 billion dollar conglomerate that operates in a diverse range of sectors from automotive and consumer goods to banking and real estate, education, health care, transport and logistics, Mansour Group operates in more than hundred countries and has exclusive rights of manufacturing and distribution of products of various multi-national companies such as GM in all over Africa. Mohamed Mansour also served as Egypt’s Minister of Transportation from 2006 to 2009 under the Hosni Mubarak regime. His son Loutfy has also grown to be a successful businessman by successfully running the investment branch of Mansour Group, Man Capital.
10) Koos Bekker (South Africa)
Net worth: $2.8 billion (2021)
Koos Bekker is the chairman of the South African media group, Naspers (JSE: NPN). Naspers has the largest market capitalization outside China, U.S, and India. It is listed on both Johannesburg (JSE) and London (LSE) stock exchanges. Naspers services encompass classified advertising, online payments, fintech (financial technology) as well as food delivery.
Bekker’s compensation package during his tenure as CEO of Naspers group was solely in terms of stock options grants. Naspers saw its market capitalization grow from $1.2 billion in the early 2000s to $46 billion at the end of Bekker’s tenure as a CEO from 1997 to 2014. His early decision of investing in Tencent, a Chinese IT and technology company, was the most profitable bet he made as CEO. In 2001, he bought stocks worth $32 million in Tencent. Those stakes today stand at $133 million. In addition, Bekker’s tenure saw the acquisition of many profitable companies such as OLX, DSTV, and MTN as well as controlling interests in Prosus, Media24, and Takealot.
9) Patrice Motsepe (South Africa)
Net worth: $3 billion (2021)
Patrice Motsepe got his fortune from the mining business. Motsepe started his career in a law firm Bowman Gilfillan in Johannesburg. Later in 1997, he founded African Rainbow minerals, which conducts the business of minerals extraction and refining including gold, ferrous metals, base metals, and platinum. Recently, he has been appointed as the president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF). He also sits on boards of major African companies which includes Harmony Gold, BRICS Business Council and Sanlam.
In 2008, Motsepe was the first black African to be included in the Forbes billionaires list. Patrice Motsepe signed the Giving Pledge in 2013 to donate half of his wealth to philanthropic causes.
8) Naguib Sawiris (Egypt)
Net worth: $3.2 billion (2021)
Naguib Sawiris belongs to one of the wealthiest Egyptian families. He is the current chairman of Orascom Telecom Holdings. Under Naguib’s supervision, Orascom Telecom Holdings has become one of the most successful telecom companies in the African region. He also founded the Weather investment group which later bought Wind Telecomunicazioni S.p.A, an Italian telecom company. In 2011, Wind telecom and Global Telecom holdings merged with VimpelCom – now Veon (NASDAQ: VEON) – making it the world’s sixth-largest mobile telecommunications provider by the number of subscribers with operations in 20 countries serving 181 million customers. Naguib also owns 88% stakes in Euronews through his Media Globe holdings.
7) Issad Rebrab (Algeria)
Net worth: $4.8 billion (2021)
Issad Rebrab, the richest man of Algeria, has made fortunes mostly through his business in the food industry through his company Cevital. Rebrab founded Cevital in 1998. The company operates in automotive, household appliances, transport (road, sea), float glass production, and large-scale retail, making Cevital Algeria’s largest conglomerate. Before the Cevital group, Rebrab also formed several other businesses in the accountancy practice, steel, and metal industry. Rebrab has also diversified his business by acquiring several other companies in Europe, Africa, and South America. In April 2019, Issad was jailed on corruption charges, tax, banking, and custom offenses for a period of eight months.
6) Abdulsamad Rabiu (Nigeria)
Net worth: $5.5 billion (2021)
Abdulsamad Rabiu is one of the renowned figures in the Nigerian business community owing to his conglomerate, BUA group, that has stakes in manufacturing, infrastructure, and agriculture. Nigeria is one of the largest crude oil-producing countries in the world. However, due to insufficient oil refineries, it relies on oil imports, resulting in a huge deficit that put a strain on Nigeria’s economy. In September 2020, Rabiu signed a deal with Axen, France’s largest hydrocarbon company for providing processing technology for Rabiu’s oil refinery in Akwa Ibom, Nigeria. This bold move makes the BUA group one of the most formidable forces in Nigeria and wider Africa. Rabiu also has a 98.5% stake in BUA Cement Plc, which is the second-largest cement production and publicly listed company on Nigerian Stock Exchange.
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Disclosure: None. 15 Richest People in Africa is originally published on Insider Monkey.