List of top 10 richest men in Nigeria

A List of Nigerian Billionaires including Alakija, Otedola, Danjuma, Oba Otudeko, Dangote, Tinubu, Ovia, Rabiu, Adenuga and Elumelu.
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By Franklin Izuchukwu

Nigeria is blessed with business invested men and women. Here is a list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria.

Nigerian Economy is one of the largest economies in Africa. The country is blessed with business invested men and women, that are making waves globally. Some notable Nigerian men have made it in the list of the top 10 richest men in Africa.

In fact, Nigeria's Aliko Dangote is the richest man in Africa. This article covers the list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria.

Nigeria is the 6th most populous country globally, with an estimated population of 206 million. This vast population is one of the biggest factors for her Economy and is undoubtedly why there are many rich individuals.

Nigeria is also blessed with enormous natural wealth and resources. As you will see down this list, some men made their wealth on crude oil business and other natural resources.

Below is a list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria currently making waves in the country and the world.

1. Aliko Dangote - Net worth of $9 Billion

Aliko Dangote is the richest man in Nigeria, with a net worth of around $9 billion. Aliko Dangote tops our list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria.

Aliko Dangote, the richest man in Nigeria, is also the richest man in Africa. He is an ethnic of Hausa Muslim from Kano State, Nigeria. Dangote was born on the 10th of April 1957 to a wealthy Muslim family of Mohammed Dangote and Mariya Sanusi Dantata, the daughter of Sanusi Dantata.

Dangote is the great-grandson of Alhaji Alhassan Dantata, the richest West African man at his death in 1955. Dangote lives in Lagos. He was previously married with three daughters and one rumoured adopted son.

Dangote was awarded Nigeria’s second-highest honour, the Grand Commander of the Niger (GCON) Order, by the former president, Goodluck Jonathan.

Dangote once said; Nigeria is one of the best-kept secrets. A lot of foreigners are not investing because they're waiting for the right time. There is no right time.

According to Forbes, Aliko Dangote, founded and chairs Dangote Cement, the continent's largest cement producer, is rated as the world's 162nd richest person.

2. Mike Adenuga - Net worth of $6.2 billion

Michael Adeniyi Agbolade Ishola Adenuga is the second richest man in Nigeria, with a net worth of around $6.2 billion.

Michael Adeniyi Agbolade Ishola Adenuga was born on the 29th of April 1953 to Oloye Michael Agbolade Adenuga Snr and Omoba Juliana Oyindamola Adenuga, in Ibadan, Oyo State.

John bull (as he is fondly called) attended Ibadan Grammar School for his secondary school education and proceeded to Comprehensive High School Aiyetoro for his Higher School Certificate.

He is married to Titi Joyce Adenuga, and they are blessed with seven children.

Mike Adenuga made his first million in 1979, at age 26, selling lace and distributing soft drinks.

Mike Adenuga's source of wealth

Mike Adenuga made his first million in 1979, at age 26, selling lace and distributing soft drinks.

Mike Adenuga, Nigeria's second richest man, built his fortune in telecom and oil production. His mobile phone network, Globacom, is the second-largest operator in Nigeria, with 50 million subscribers.

Mike Adenuga was issued a conditional GSM licence in 1999; after revoked, he received a second one when the government-held another auction in 2003. 

Mike Adenuga's telecom company Globacom spread quickly and started challenging the giant MTN Group.

Benin launched services in 2008 and has continued its spread across Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire, with more licences currently being prospected in other West African countries.

His oil exploration outfit, Conoil Producing, operates 6 oil blocks in the Niger Delta.

In 1990, Mike Adenuga received a drilling license. In 1991, his Consolidated Oil struck oil in Southwestern Ondo State's shallow waters, the first indigenous oil company to do so in commercial quantity.

In 2009, Adenuga was detained for money laundering by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission. He subsequently left the country and lived in London until the Umaru Musa Yar'Adua regime granted him a pardon.

3. Abdulsamad Rabiu - Net worth of $3.2 billion

Abdulsamad Rabiu is the third richest man in Nigeria, with a net worth of around 3.2 billion US dollars.

Abdulsamad Rabiu was born into a wealthy family on the 4th of August, 1960, in Kano State. His father, late Khalifah Isyaku Rabiu, was one of Nigeria’s foremost industrialist in the northern states of Nigeria in the 1970s and 1980s.

Late Khalifah Isyaku Rabiu was a serial entrepreneur who built his wealth majorly from commodity trading.

Abdulsamad Rabiu had his early education in Kano state before proceeding to the United States for his university degree. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio, USA.

He is married with children; the most popular of his children is Khadija Rabiu. Abdulsamad has many siblings, including Nafiu Rabiu, a prominent businessman and Rabiu Rabiu, the IRS Airlines Chairman.

Young Abdulsamad Rabiu was saddled with running the father’s business at the young age of 24 when he returned from the United States after his studies.

At the time, his father was detained by General Muhammed Buhari's administration on allegations of duty aversion on rice imports.

Even though young Adbulsamad did not have much business experience, he could stir the company around for good in his father's absence.

Abdulsamad Rabiu is the founder of BUA Group, a Nigerian conglomerate active in cement production, sugar refining and real estate.

Abdulsamad Rabiu's Source of Wealth

Abdul Samad Rabiu established BUA International Limited in 1988 for the sole purpose of commodity trading. The company imported rice, edible oil, flour, and iron and steel.

In 1990, the government, which owned Delta Steel Company, contracted with BUA to supply its raw materials for finished products. This provided a much-needed windfall for the young company.

BUA expanded further into steel, producing billets, importing iron ore, and constructing multiple rolling mills in Nigeria.

A few years later, BUA acquired Nigerian Oil Mills Limited, the largest edible oil processing company in Nigeria. In 2005 BUA started two flour-milling plants in Lagos and Kano.

By 2008, BUA had broken an eight-year monopoly in the Nigerian sugar industry by commissioning the second-largest sugar refinery in sub-Saharan Africa.

In 2009 the company acquired a controlling stake in a publicly-listed Cement Company in Northern Nigeria. It began to construct a $900 million cement plant in Edo State, completing it in early 2015.

4. Femi Otedola - Net worth of $1.8 billion

Our no 4th on the list is no other person than Femi Otedola. Femi Otedola is the 4th richest man in Nigeria, with a networth of around $1.8 billion.

Femi Otedola, born on 4th November 1962, is a Nigerian businessman, philanthropist, and former chairman of Forte Oil PLC, an importer of fuel products.

Femi Otedola is the founder of Zenon Petroleum and Gas Ltd and the owner of several other businesses across shipping, real estate and finance. He has recently invested in power generation as part of the liberalisation of the sector in Nigeria.

Read more about Femi Otedola, a business mogul in Nigeria and his business empire.

5. Folorunsho Alakija - Net worth of $1billion

The no 5 in our list of the top ten richest men in Nigeria is Folorunsho Alakija. Folorunsho is also the richest woman in Nigeria and the 5th richest person in the country, with an estimated net worth of around 1 billion U.S dollars.

Folorunsho Alakija is heavily invested in the country's oil and gas sector. She is an entrepreneur and billionaire businesswoman. She is the executive vice-chairman of FAMFA Oil Ltd and Managing Director of Rose of Sharon Group.

Folorunsho Alakija’s net worth has been featured on Forbes alongside influential businessmen Aliko Dangote, Mike Adenuga and Femi Otedola.

Folorunsho Alakija was born on the 15th of July 1951 to the family of Chief L.A. Ogbara in Ikorodu, Lagos State, and she has 51 siblings.

She travelled to the United Kingdom at age seven for her primary school education at Dinorben School for Girls in Harfodunos Hall, Llangernyw, Wales.

Afterwards, she returned to Nigeria and attended Muslim High School, Sagamu Ogun State. Folorunsho Alakija went back abroad for her secretarial studies at Pitman’s Central College, London.

Folorunsho Alakija got married to Modupe Alakija, a lawyer, in November 1976, and they are blessed with four sons and grandchildren. She lives in Lagos, Nigeria, with her family.

Since giving her life to Christ in 1991, she preaches the gospel ceaselessly to anyone that cares to listen. She and her husband started a house fellowship that is now a ministry, Rose of Sharon Glorious Ministry International.

You should know that:

Folorunsho Alakija is the primary sponsor of the Agbami Medical and Engineering Scholarship Scheme which records over 1000 beneficiaries annually.

Folorunsho Alakija is married to Modupe Alakija, and they are blessed with four sons and grandchildren

Small circles?

DJ Xclusive is a nephew to the Nigerian Billionaire Folorunsho Alakija

Folorunsho Alakija and FamFa Oil

In May 1993, Alakija applied for the allocation of an oil prospecting license (OPL). The license to explore for oil on a 617,000-acre block was granted to Alakija's company, Famfa Limited.

In September 1996, she entered into a joint venture agreement with Star Deep Water Petroleum Limited (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Texaco). She appointed the company as a technical adviser to explore the license, transferring 40 per cent of her 100 per cent stake to Star Deep.

Once word got out, they struck oil; the Nigerian government snatched a 40% stake. Later, they took an additional 10%. For twelve years, she fought the government in court.

The government argument was if Alakija and his family were allowed to keep their bloc, they stood to make $10 million a day. Still, she persisted, and in the end, she won.

It is worthy to note that:

Alakija's first company was a fashion label whose customers included the wife of former Nigerian president Ibrahim Babangida.

6. Uzoma Dozie - Net worth of $1 billion

The no 6 in our list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria is Uzoma Dozie. Uzoma Dozie is Nigeria's 5th richest man with an estimated net worth of around 1 billion US dollars.

Dozie was born in 1939 in Egbu village of Owerri. He was born into the family of Charles Dozie, who was a Catholic Catechist. Dozie attended Our Lady's School Emekuku, where he obtained his First School Leaving Certificate (FSLC).

Pascal is married to Chinyere Dozie, and they have five children.

Pascal Dozie began his career as an economist at theNational Economic Development Office in the United Kingdom. He was also a part-time lecturer at the North-Western Polytechnic, London. Between 1970 and 1971, he served as a consulting economist at African States Consulting Organisation in Uganda.

In 1985, he was appointed Chairman of Progress Bank, which is defunct. Later that same year, Dozie applied for a banking license to help traders in South-Eastern Nigeria face banking issues. This brought about the birth of Diamond Bank.

In 1990, he satisfied the terms of the Central Bank of Nigeria to operate a standard bank, and in 1991 the bank began operations. He was CEO of Diamond Bank from 1991 to 2006 when he handed over to his son Uzoma Dozie.

Dozie was also a one time President of the Nigerian Stock Exchange. He currently owns shares in MTN Group and is Chairman of the company.

Pascal G. Dozie (centre) and sons, L-R: Ngozi, Kelechi, Uzoma, Chijioke and Chiekezi.

7. Jimoh Ibrahim - Net Worth of $1 billion

The no 7 in our list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria is Jimoh Ibrahim. Jimoh Ibrahim 6th richest man in Nigeria, with an estimated net worth of around 1 billion US dollars.

Jimoh Ibrahim was born on the 24th of February 1967, to Alhaji Yakubu and Omofemiwa Jimoh. He is a native of Okitipupa in Ondo State, Nigeria. His father was a bricklayer who married about 7 wives, while his mother was a fish seller.

Jimoh Ibrahim is married to Mrs Modupe Jimoh Ibrahim and is the father of four children. He had his primary and secondary school education at Saint John’s school, Igbotako, Ondo State.

Jimoh Ibrahim studied law at Obafemi Awolowo University in Ile Ife, Osun State, Nigeria, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree. He went further to obtain a Masters in Public Administration (MPA) from the same institution.

During Jimoh’s undergraduate days, he proposed to organise seminars on law for all local governments in Nigeria so they could learn to make their own laws. This move came after he discovered that only the federal and state governments had laws.

Sources have it that he made a lot of money from conducting the seminars across all local governments in Nigeria. He also organised several workshops in his field for top government officials who earned him good money.

Global Fleet Oil and Gas, a company owned by Jimoh Ibrahim grew by buying out as many gas stations as possible and in just a year, they acquired 150 gas stations.

Jimoh Ibrahim also worked with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as a tax consultant and was among the Harvard team that championed the tax reforms in Bangladesh.

Jimoh Ibrahim is an astute investor who has investments in several industries; the oil and gas industry, hospitality industry, aviation industry, banking industry, real estate sector, insurance industry, publishing and media industry.

Note:

Jimoh Ibrahim unsuccessfully contested for the governorship of Ondo State under ANPP in 2003 and PDP in 2016.

8. Orji Uzor Kalu - Net worth of $1 billion

No. 8 on the list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria is Orji Uzor Kalu. Orji Uzor Kalu is the 7th richest man in Nigeria, with an estimated net worth of around 1 billion US dollars.

Orji Uzor Kalu was born on the 21st of April 1960 to Mr Johnson Uzor Nesiegbe Kalu and Mrs Eunice Kalu's family. He attended Christ the King School Aba and Government College Umuahia.

Orji Uzor Kalu is one of Nigeria's richest men thanks to his political aspirations investments in Oil and Gas resources and media.

After studying at Barewa College, Zaria, he enrolled in the University of Maiduguri, where he studied political science.

During his time at the university, Kalu became a student activist and participated in the "Ali Must Go" riots against the education minister.

His participation resulted in his suspension. While his fellow students later took the school authorities to court, Kalu left school to build his own business.

Orji Uzor Kalu is married to Mrs Ifeoma Ada Menakaya and they are blessed with four lovely children

Kalu has a degree from Abia State University, a Certificate in Business Administration from Harvard University and honorary doctorates from Maiduguri and Abia State's universities.

Orji Uzor Kalu is a philanthropist, a businessman and a politician. Orji Uzor Kalu is currently a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, representing Abia North Senatorial zone.

Orji Uzor Kalu was a presidential candidate in 2007, a two-time governor of Abia State (1999-2007) and was a member of the House of Rep in 1991.

Orji Uzor Kalu is the founder of Slok Holding, a West African conglomerate with interests in shipping, banking, oil trading, manufacturing and the media. He got his start in business at age 19 after being expelled from the University of Maiduguri for spearheading a series of student riots.

FYI

Orji Uzor Kalu is the chairman of the Daily Sun, a Nigerian daily print newspaper. Also, Orji Uzor Kalu and Ahmed Lawan (Senate president Nigeria's 9th senate) were roommates at the University of Maiduguri in 1980.

Orji Uzor Kalu Family

The businessman cum politician Orji Uzor Kalu is married to Mrs Ifeoma Ada Menakaya, and they are blessed with four lovely children:

  • Neya Kalu
  • Michael Uzor Kalu
  • Olivia Kalu
  • Nicole Kalu

Orji Uzor Kalu's Imprisonment over Fraud

Kalu was convicted by the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court on Thursday, 5 December 2019 and sentenced to 12 years in prison for N7.65 billion fraud.

Orji Uzor Kalu was convicted for defrauding Abia State's government, where he was a governor for 8 years using his company, Slok Nigeria Limited. Clacified reported that the supreme court nullified his conviction and ordered his release for a re-trial.

9. Jim James Ovia - Net worth of $980 million

The no 9th in our list of the top ten richest men in Nigeria is Jim James Ovia. Jim James Ovia is the 8th richest man in Nigeria, with an estimated net worth of around 980 million US dollars.

Jim James Ovia was born on the 4th of November, 1951, to a large family in Agbor, Delta State. He is the second son of Obi Olihe of Agbor-Obi, one of the most revered Chiefs in the Agbor Kingdom.

Jim Ovia holds a master's degree in Business Administration from the University of Louisiana, Monroe, Louisiana, the USA, in 1979. He also holds a B.Sc. degree in Business Administration from Southern University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA (1977).

Following the deregulation of the banking sector during Babangida’s administration in the late 1980s, Jim Ovia, alongside some investors, started Zenith Bank in 1990.

Interesting fact about Jim Ovia

While growing up, young Jim Ovia always pondered about the career path to choose and was encouraged by his uncle to study business administration. Heeding his uncle's advice and hard work made him what he is today.

JIm Ovia is married to Kay Ovia, the CEO of Quantum Markets Ltd and initiator of Star Rising Talent Hunt for children and young adults.

Jim Ovia also founded Visafone Communications Limited, a Nigerian wireless network provider, in 2007.

The company was later acquired by MTN, a leading telecommunications company in Africa, in 2015. Before the acquisition, Visafone had more than 3million subscribers.

Jim James Ovia's current net worth is estimated to be $980 million.

10. Hajia Bola Shagaya - Net worth of $950 million

The 10th person in our list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria is Hajia Bola Muinat Shagaya. Hajia Bola Muinat Shagaya is the 2nd richest woman in Nigeria and the 10th richest person in Nigeria.

Hajia Bola Shagaya's current net worth is estimated to be around $950 million, and at this networth, she is clearly the 10th richest person in Nigeria.

Hajia Bola Muinat Shagaya is a Nigerian business mogul and fashion enthusiast. Bola Shagaya is the founder and CEO of Bolmus Group International, a conglomerate with holdings in real estate, oil and gas, banking and photography.

Hajia Bola Shagaya was born on 10 October 1959, the daughter of Adut Makur, a Sudanese seamstress and Emenike Mobo, a Nigerian Public Servant.

Bola Shagaya is currently married to Alhaji Shagaya, a Kwara State-based transport mogul, and has six children:

  1. Sherif Shagaya,
  2. Hakeem Shagaya,
  3. Deeja Shagaya,
  4. Naieema Shagaya,
  5. Amaya Roberts Shagaya and
  6. Adeena Roberts Shagaya.

Bola Shagaya's children are dispersed across the world, most reputably growing her Real Estate empire in Europe and the United States. Also involved in minor business and industry holdings across Asia and Australia.

On 22 July 2010, she was awarded by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan (GCFR), the title of Member of the Order of the Niger (MON).

Fresh out of school, Bola Shagaya started a promising career as a banker. She worked in the audit department of the Central bank of Nigeria (CBN). In 1983, she left the corporate world and ventured into business.

Bola Shagaya first business experience started with the importation and distribution of photographic materials such as roll papers, films and chemicals under the trading name Bolmus International (Nigeria) Limited.

Hajia Bola Shagaya and Money Laundering Investigation

According to SaharaReporters Bola Shagaya, Nigeria's Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, is being investigated for money laundering involving Patience Jonathan, Nigeria's former first lady.

In recognition of her outstanding virtues and immense contribution to economic growth, she was recognised and honoured with a double award by the Nigerian government.

Hajia, as she is fondly called, stretched her tentacles into the Nigerian oil and gas sector. She founded Practoil Limited, one of the largest importer and distributors of base oil in Nigeria today.

As far back as the late 1980s, during Gen. Ibrahim Babaginda led-administration, the business tycoon stirred her oil and gas company to secure oil blocks allocation. Thus, making her one of the indigenous oil marketers.

She expanded her oil and gas industry operations by establishing another exploration company, Voyage Oil and Gas Limited, in 2011.

In 2012, Voyage Oil and Gas Limited were awarded an oil exploration license by the Nigerian government.

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