Top 10 richest men and women in Nigeria
Nigeria is blessed with business invested men and women. Here is a list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria. The list also covers some richest women in Nigeria.
Nigerian Economy is one of the largest economies in Africa. There are notable Nigerian men and women who have made it in the list of the top 10 richest men in the whole of Africa.
In fact, the richest man in Nigeria, Aliko Dangote is as well the richest man in Africa. This article covers the list of the top 10 richest men in Nigeria starting from the number 10th position.
Nigeria is the 6th most populous country in the world, with an estimated 206 million people in 2020. This vast population is one of the biggest factors for her Economy and is no doubt why there are many rich men and women in the country.
Nigeria is also blessed with enormous natural wealth and resources, and as you will see down this list of top 10 richest men in Nigeria, some these rich men made their wealth on Crude oil business and some other natural resources.
Here are the top 10 list of the richest Nigerian men and women currently making waves in the country and the world at large.
10. Hajia Bola Shagaya - Net worth of $950 million
The first person in our list of the top ten richest men and richest women 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:
- Sherif Shagaya,
- Hakeem Shagaya,
- Deeja Shagaya,
- Naieema Shagaya,
- Amaya Roberts Shagaya and
- Adeena Roberts Shagaya.
Bola Shagaya's children are dispersed across the world, most reputably growing her Real Estate empire in both 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 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 is being investigated by Nigeria's Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for money laundering also 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 allocation for oil blocks. Thus, making her one of the indigenous oil marketers.
Did You Know?
Bola Shagaya introduced the Konica brand of photographic materials into the Nigerian and West African markets.
She expanded her operations in the oil and gas industry by establishing another exploration company, Voyage Oil and Gas Limited in 2011.
In 2012, Voyage Oil and Gas Limited was awarded an oil exploration license by the Nigerian government.
9. Jim James Ovia - Net worth of $980 million
The no 9th in our list of the top ten richest men and women 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 and 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.
Intresting 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 was at the helm of affairs of the bank for 20 years until his resignation in July 2010. He was reappointed the Chairman of the bank in 2014.
He is the chairman and largest individual shareholder with a stake of slightly more than 9% stake.
JIm Ovia is married to Kay Ovia, the Chief Executive Officer of Quantum Markets Ltd and initiator of Star Rising Talent Hunt for children and young adults.
Ovia started out as a clerk at Union Bank, formerly Barclays Bank in 1973, this was shortly after he finished his secondary school.
He worked for 3 years as a bank clerk before moving to USA where he obtained his Bachelor’s and Master’s degree.
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.
8. Orji Uzor Kalu - Net worth of $1 billion
Our no 8 in the list of 10 richest men and richest women 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 the family of Mr Johnson Uzor Nesiegbe Kalu and Mrs Eunice Kalu. He attended Christ the King School Aba and Government College Umuahia.
Orji Uzor Kalu is one of the richest men in Nigeria 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 the universities of Maiduguri and Abia State.
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 University of Maiduguri for spearheading a series of student riots.
Orji Uzor Kalu is the chairman of the Daily Sun, a Nigerian daily print newspaper.
Orji Uzor Kalu borrowed $35 from his mother and started trading commodities like palm oil, rice and sugar. He diversified into furniture manufacturing and transportation and became a millionaire by the time he was 20.
It is also worthy to note that at the age of 25, Orji Uzor Kalu became the chairman of Borno water Board; As the chairman, he examined the water problem of the state and provided a lasting solution.
Kalu became the youngest Nigerian to receive the National Merit Award from President Ibrahim Babangida, at the age of 26 in 1986.
Orji Uzor Kalu hit the big time in the early 80s when the Nigerian military government awarded him lucrative contracts to import and supply arms and ammunition to Nigeria's military and defence forces.
Talk of best Pals:
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
Kalu is also the chairman of the New Telegraph, this paper distributes 100,000 copies on a daily basis across Nigeria.
Orji Uzor Kalu Forbes' profile and Net worth
Forbes estimates that Orji Uzor Kalu's net worth to be $330 million as at 2015 but there has not been any recent update as at the time of publication of this article thus Kalu is generally estimated to be worth $ 1 billion currently.
Forbes also ranked him as the 2015 49th richest man in Africa.
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 the government of Abia State 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.
7. Jimoh Ibrahim - Net Worth of $1 billion
The no 7 in our list of top 10 richest men and women in Nigeria is Jimoh Ibrahim. Jimoh Ibrahim 6th richest man in Nigeria with an estimated net worth of around 1 billion US dollars.
As one of the richest men in Nigeria, Jimoh Ibrahim is heavily invested in the oil and gas sector.
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 the 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.
Afterwards, Jimoh Ibrahim attended Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA, where he graduated with a combined Master of Laws (LLM) and Masters in International Taxation degree (MIT).
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 went ahead to organise several workshops in his field for top government officials who earned him good money as well.
Jimoh Ibrahim discovered the government was experiencing challenges recovering tax from multinational oil companies.
Armed with this information, he put forward a proposal on how he could help the government recover the billions owed in withholding tax by the multinational oil companies.
His proposal was approved, and he kept true to his promise of recovering the billions of naira owed while earning a fortune for himself.
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 team from Harvard 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.
Did You Know?
Global Media Mirror Ltd, a company owned by Jimoh Ibrahim bought 51% of NewsWatch Magazine. NewsWatch was formed by Dele Giwa, Ray Ekpu, et al.
Global Fleet Group is the umbrella company Jimoh uses for his investments. The company first started out as Global Fleet Oil and Gas in August 2004 as a petroleum marketing company.
Oil and gas sales boomed for Global Fleet and they were raking a minimum of $1m in sales in a day. This helped them complete their depot which improved the overall operation of the company.
Currently, Global Fleet has grown into a fully diversified business conglomerate with presence both in Nigeria and Abroad and is now known as Global Fleet Group.
JImoh Ibrahim's Net worth is estimated to be at least $
Jimoh Ibrahim unsuccessfully contested for the governorship of Ondo State under ANPP in 2003 and PDP in 2016.
6. Uzoma Dozie - Net worth of $1 billion
The no 6 in our list of top ten richest men and richest women 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 aCatholic 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 the South-Eastern Nigeria who were faced with issues of banking. This brought about the birth of Diamond Bank.
In 1990, he satisfied the terms of 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.
#5.1 Uzoma Dozie Net Worth
Uzoma Dozie’s net worth is estimated at $1 billion. Despite becoming one of the richest men in Nigeria, Uzoma Dozie's profile is not within Forbes radar at the time of writing.
Pascal G. Dozie (centre) and sons, L-R: Ngozi, Kelechi, Uzoma, Chijioke and Chiekezi.
Ponder a bit:
At inception of Diamond bank, the share capital of the bank was ₦10million ($28,000) with only 21 interested shareholders.
5. Folorunsho Alakija - Net worth of $1billion
The no 5 in our list of top ten richest men and richest women in Nigeria is Folorunsho Alakija. Folorunsho is 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 oil and gas sector of the country, and it is one of the major reasons she had made to the list of the top 10 richest men and women in Nigeria.
Folorunsho Alakija 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. Also, she and her husband started a house fellowship which 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
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) and appointed the company as a technical adviser for the exploration of 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 family were allowed to keep their bloc, they stood to make $10 million a day. Still, she persisted and in the end, she won.
Folorunsho Alakija's Net Worth
Folorunsho Alakija’s net worth as at 14th January 2020, is estimated at $1 billion according to Forbes.
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.
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.
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 Chairman of IRS Airlines.
Young Abdulsamad Rabiu was saddled with the responsibility of running the father’s business at a young age of 24 when he returned from the United States after his studies.
At the time his father was detained by the administration of General Muhammed Buhari on allegations of duty aversion on rice imports.
Even though young Adbulsamad did not have much business experience, he was able to stir the company around for good in the absence of his father.
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 in exchange 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 in 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 went on to acquire a controlling stake in a publicly-listed Cement Company in Northern Nigeria and began to construct a $900 million cement plant in Edo State, completing it in early 2015.
Abdulsamad Rabiu's Net worth
As at October 13, 2020, Forbes estimated Abdulsamad Rabiu's wealth at $3.2 billion which places Abdulsamad Rabiu as the 8th and 712th most richest man in Africa and the world respectively .
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.
In May 2015, Adenuga made a takeover bid to purchase Ivorian mobile telecom's operator Comium Côte d'Ivoire for $600 million.
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 it was 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.
It launched services in Benin 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 the shallow waters of Southwestern Ondo State, 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.
Mike Adenuga's Net worth
Forbes has estimated Mike Adenuga's net worth at $6.2 billion as of 13th October 2020; he also ranks 3rd and 286th in Africa and the world respectively.
Talk of thorny Roses?
Adenuga got an MBA at Pace University in New York, supporting himself as a student by working as a taxi driver.
Mike Adenuga made his first million in 1979, at age 26, selling lace and distributing soft drinks.
1. Aliko Dangote - Net worth of $9 Billion
The no 1 richest man and person in Nigeria is Aliko Dangote with a net worth of around $9 billion. Aliko Dangote tops our list of top 10 richest men in Nigeria.
Aliko Dangote, the richest man in Nigeria, is also the richest man in Africa.
Aliko Dangote, an ethnic of Hausa Muslim from Kano State, was born on the 10th of April 1957 into a wealthy Muslim family, the son of Mohammed Dangote and Mariya Sanusi Dantata, the daughter of Sanusi Dantata.
He is the great-grandson of Alhaji Alhassan Dantata, the richest West African at the time of his death in 1955. Dangote lives in Lagos. He was previously married with three daughters and one adopted son.
Dangote was awarded Nigeria’s second-highest honour, the Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger (GCON) by the former president, Goodluck Jonathan.
He currently ranks as the 66th most powerful person in the world.
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.
The rich and the richer?
Dangote's grandfather was a successful trader of rice and oats in Kano, Nigeria's second-largest city.
Dangote told Forbes that when he was young, he bought sweets, gave them to others to sell, and he kept the profits.
According to Forbes:
- Aliko Dangote, Africa's richest man, founded and chairs Dangote Cement, the continent's largest cement producer.
- Aliko Dangote is the 162nd richest person in the world.
- He owns 85% of publicly-traded Dangote Cement through a holding company.
- Dangote Cement produces 45.6 million metric tons annually and has operations in 10 countries across Africa.
- Dangote also owns stakes in publicly-traded salt and sugar manufacturing companies.
- Dangote Refinery has been under construction since 2016 and is expected to be one of the world's largest oil refineries once complete.
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