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Johann Rupert Overtakes Aliko Dangote as Africa’s Richest in 2024

Johann Rupert Overtakes Aliko Dangote as Africa's Richest in 2024

In a notable shift, South African business magnate Johann Rupert has surpassed Nigeria’s Aliko Dangote as Africa’s wealthiest individual for the year 2024, according to Forbes Real-Time Billionaires.

Johann Rupert’s Rise to the Top:
Johann Rupert, chairman of the Swiss luxury goods firm Compagnie Financiere Richemont, now holds the coveted position as Africa’s richest person. His family, with a combined net worth of $10 billion, secured the 201st spot on the global billionaire ranking, with Rupert himself chairing both Richemont and South Africa-based investment holding company Remgro.

Dangote’s Wealth Decline:
Aliko Dangote, who held the top spot for over 12 years, saw a decline in his net worth from $13.5 billion in 2023 to $9.7 billion as of January 4, 2024—a substantial loss of $3.8 billion. The devaluation of the naira by approximately 40% in June contributed to the weakening of Dangote’s wealth in dollar terms, as he primarily earns in naira.

Rupert’s Notable Ventures:
Johann Rupert’s diversified portfolio includes a 26% stake in Reinet, an investment holding company in Luxembourg, and partial ownership of the Saracens English rugby team and Anthonij Rupert Wines. Despite his successes, Rupert expresses regret for missing the opportunity to acquire 50% of Gucci for just $175 million.

Changes in the Billionaire Landscape:
Forbes also noted shifts in other African billionaires’ rankings. Abdul Samad Rabiu of BUA Group and Mike Adenuga of Globacom experienced changes in their positions. Adenuga’s wealth declined from $6.3 billion to $3.1 billion, moving him from the 6th to the 10th position, while Rabiu’s wealth increased from $7.6 billion to $5.7 billion.

Top Ten Forbes Billionaires Ranking in Africa:

  1. Johann Rupert & family — $10 billion
  2. Aliko Dangote — $9.7 billion
  3. Nicky Oppenheimer & family — $8.3 billion
  4. Nassef Sawiris — $7.3 billion
  5. Nathan Kirsh — $5.8 billion
  6. Abdulsamad Rabiu — $5.7 billion
  7. Issad Rebrab & Family — $4.6 billion
  8. Mohamed Mansour — $3.6 billion
  9. Naguib Sawiris — $3.3 billion
  10. Mike Adenuga — $3.1 billion*

As the financial landscape continues to evolve, the rankings highlight the dynamic nature of wealth distribution among Africa’s business elite.

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