In 2012 she replaced Oprah Winfrey from the title of the richest black woman of the world and has been holding it until now. She is the richest woman in Africa as well. Here are top facts about the Nigerian business tycoon Folorunsho Alakija.
1. Young years
At the age of seven Folorunsho started studying at Dinorben School for Girls in Hafodunos Hall in Llangernyw, Wales. After it she returned to Nigeria and attended Muslim High School Sagamu, Ogun State. Then she returned abroad for her secretarial studies at Pitman’s Central College, London.
After the graduation she started her career in 1974 as an executive secretary at Sijuade Enterprises, Lagos. Then she worked at the former First National Bank of Chicago, now FinBank for a several years. But once she gave up this job and went to study fashion design at the American College, London and the Central School of Fashion. The future billionaire established a tailoring company called Supreme Stitches. It rose to prominence and fame within a few years, and as Rose of Sharon House of Fashion, became a household name. In 2013 the National Heritage Council and Endowment for the Arts was established. Alakija was appointed as vice-chairman of the body.
She is a popular philanthropist who takes up the cause of the defenceless in Nigerian society. Folorunsho has a foundation called the Rose of Sharon Foundation. It helps widowed women and orphans. It provides them with grants and scholarships and helps with an employment.
In November 1976 she married a lawyer Modupe Alakija. Now they have 4 grown-up sons. All of them reside in Lagos. She also has a grandchild from her first son. Her husband is the Chairman of Famfa Oil.
Her real estate worth over $100 million (N18,400 million). She also has a private jet Bombardier Global Express 6000, worth nearly $46 million (N 8,500 million). In 2012 Forbes rated her as he 96th most powerful woman in the world.