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A Glance at the List of 6 African Billionaires Whose Net Worth Increased in 2019

Unlike 2018 when the majority of African billionaires experienced nosedive in fortunes, 2019 has seen an upswing for members of the three commas club.

Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote’s net worth increased by $4 billion this year alone, maintaining his strong business acumen and respect across the continent. Focusing on his refinery business, when finally completed, the wealth of the Nigerian businessman is expected to rise further.

On the list after Dangote is Johann Rupert, a South African-based entrepreneur and owner of Swiss-based luxury-goods company Richemont adding $1 billion fortune to his wealth.

Business Insider SSA scoured the Bloomberg Billionaire Index (a daily ranking of the world’s richest people) to look at the biggest movers among the African billionaires in 2019 and their current net worth.

1. Aliko Dangote

Aliko Dangote maintains the lead as Africa’s richest man in 2019, standing on the 96th position on the world’s 500 richest people and the biggest movers in fortune on the continent this year, according to data mined from Bloomberg.

With a net worth of about $10 billion in December 2018, the richest African business mogul added more than $4 billion to his wealth as of December 17th, 2019, when Business Insider SSA checked.

With few strategies in 2019, finalising Lagos refinery and the sell-off of his loss-making business, Dangote Flour Mill, the Lagos-based billionaire is back on the path of growth.

Dangote’s fortune details in a glance:

  • Current net worth – $14.9 billion
  • Gain (YTD) – $4.43 billion
  • Industry – Industrial
  • Country – Nigeria

2. Johann Rupert

The South African-born owner of Swiss-based luxury-goods, Richemont and Remgro also added $1.22 billion to his fortune within the year.

Last December, Rupert’s wealth stood $5.92 billion after losing more than $300 million due to dismal sales and profit decline. He is currently inching higher than Nicky Oppenheimer as the continent’s second richest on Bloomberg Billionaire Index.

  • Current net worth $7.25 billion
  • Gain (YTD) – $1.22 billion
  • Industry – Diversified
  • Country – South Africa

3. Nicky Oppenheimer

In December 2018, Nicky was the richest man in South Africa with a net worth totaling $5.98 billion. Fast forward to 2019, his wealth currently stands at $7.23 billion, dropping behind Rupert as of December 17th, 2019.


The 74-year-old South African billionaire businessman and philanthropist gained immense wealth mining diamonds as the former chairman of De Beers diamond mining company. He currently owns Fireblade Aviation in Johannesburg, an aviation firm, operating chartered flights with its fleet of 3 planes and 2 helicopters.

He also has conservation land across South Africa, Botswana, and Zimbabwe.

  • Current net worth – $7.23 billion
  • Gain (YTD) – $625 million
  • Industry – Diversified
  • Country – South Africa

4. Nassef Sawiris

Nassef is the richest man in the North Africa nation and has recorded more than $700 million gain in net worth in 2019.

He owns 30% of OCI, a Geleen, Netherlands-based construction company, and 27% of Dubai-based Orascom Construction, an infrastructure and engineering group.

His other assets include stakes in the sportswear company Adidas and LafargeHolcim, the world’s biggest cement maker.

  • Current net worth – $6.75 billion
  • Gain (YTD) – $789 million
  • Industry – Industrial
  • Country – Egypt

5. Natie Kirsh

A South African-born Swazi billionaire businessman with properties spanning Australia, Swaziland, and the UK.

Kirsh is on the 312-spot of the world’s 500 billionaires on Bloomberg Billionaire Index 2019.

He has a stake in Jetro Holdings, a New York-based company that manages two U.S. wholesale grocery businesses.

  • Current net worth – $6.13 billion
  • Gain (YTD) – $422 million
  • Industry – Food & Beverage
  • Country – South Africa

6. Naguib Sawiris

Sawiris is an Egyptian businessman who has made a great fortune in the telecommunications industry, in particular through the sale of Orascom to Russian firm VimpelCom (now Veon) in 2011.


Egyptian billionaire Naguib Sawiris said he will return to politics to press for more freedoms in the North African country after staying away out of frustration

  • Current net worth-  $5.05 billion
  • Gain (YTD) – $284 million
  • Industry – Media & Telecom
  • Country – Egypt.

Written by How Africa

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