On June 16, Forbes Magazine named South African billionaire Johann Rupert “Africa’s richest man,” ousting Nigeria’s Aliko Dangote, who had held the distinction for the previous ten years.
According to Forbes’ real-time Global Billionaires Ranking, Rupert’s net worth is $12 billion, while Dangote’s is $10.8 billion. Dangote’s net worth plummeted as a result of the naira’s depreciation as a result of the Central Bank of Nigeria’s decision to auction the dollar at a lower rate than the official market price.
The central bank sold the dollar almost 30 per cent cheaper.
With Johanna’s new status as Africa’s richest man, here are important things to know about him.
1, 73 years old Rupert was born in Stellenbosch, South Africa, on June 1, 1950 to business tycoon Anton Rupert and his wife, Hurberte. He is the eldest of his parent’s children.
2, Rupert studied economics and company law at the University of Stellenbosch but dropped out to pursue a business career.
3, In 2004, the same university honoured Rupert with an honorary degree in economics. In 2008, he received another honorary doctorate from Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.
4, Rupert is married to Gaynor Rupert. The couple has three children together; Anton Ruper Jr., Caroline Rupert, and Hanneli Rupert.
5, In 1979, he returned to South Africa after a while in the US and established Rand Merchant Bank where he remained CEO until 1984 when the company merged to form RMB Holdings.
6, Upon leaving RMB, Rupert joined his father’s cigarette manufacturing company, Rembrandt Group, founded in 1948.
7, In 1988, Rupert founded Compagnie Financiere Richemont, a Switzerland-based luxury goods holding company. In the same year, he was appointed Non-Executive Director of Rothmans International plc and was also honoured by the Sunday Times as the “Businessman of the Year.”
8, In 1989, Rupert became the vice chairman of his father’s company and was made chairman of the same company, Rembrandt Group Limited, in 1991.
9, in 1997, Rupert became the Non-Executive Chairman of Gold Fields South Africa Ltd.
10, Rupert is also a golf enthusiast. In 1990, he established the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation. The foundation is aimed at addressing social issues through sports and has helped with about 675 projects globally.