15 Richest Black Billionaires In The World

Richest Black Billionaires In The World

You’ve heard the saying, “money makes the world go round.”

You’d probably be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t want to be rich and wealthy.

While most are just hoping to be millionaires, there are others who have surpassed it – the billionaires

There are thousands of billionaires around the world.

Thousands.

And even so, there are only 15 Black billionaires.

As we know, money comes and money goes, and the same can be said for many of these billionaires.

While the numbers change from day to day, these are the most recent numbers from Forbes.

From Africa to the United States, here are the 14 richest black people in the world.

Aliko Dangote ($8.1 Billion)

15 Richest Black Billionaires In The World

Aliko Dangote is Africa’s richest person.

Born to a wealthy family, he was born in Northern Nigeria in 1957.

Raised in the Muslim faith, he attended the Sheikh Ali Kumasi Madrasa primary school before attending Capital High School in Kano and Government College, Birnin Kudu.

His formal education ended with a bachelor’s degree in business studies and administration from Al-Azhar University in Cairo.

While he was wealthy from the beginning of his life, Aliko Dangote founded Dangote Cement which is the largest cement producer in the country.

Most of his wealth comes from owning 85% of his company which is publicly traded.

Even so, he continues to make money through shares in other publicly traded companies as well.

For multiple years, he has been named the “Most Powerful Man in Africa.”

And he has even more awards and accolades under his belt.

In 2014, not only was he named Forbes Africa Person of the Year, but he was also listed in TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the world.

Mike Adenuga ($5.9 Billion)

Mike Adenuga is the second richest person in Africa.

Also from Nigeria, he has made his fortune in telecom and oil.

Adenuga comes from humble beginnings.

While his dad was a school teacher and his mother was a businesswoman, he worked as a taxi driver to fund his undergraduate degree from Northwestern Oklahoma State University and his MBA from Pace University.

Since then, he stuck gold (or oil) with his Consolidated Oil company.

He also started his telecom company Globacom which is the second largest operator in Nigeria.

Married with 7 children, his net worth peaked in March 2016 at $10 billion and as of 2020 sits at just under $6 billion.

Robert Smith ($5 Billion)

And now, we have the richest black person in the United States.

Born and raised in Colorado, he was the child of two PhDs. 

He would first get his undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from Cornell University before getting his MBA from Columbia University.

Smith has worked for a number of well-known and successful companies as a chemical engineer including Goodyear, Kraft General Foods, before working at Goldman Sachs as an technological investment banker.

He founded Vista Equity Partners in 2000, a company that would lead him to advise on billion dollar mergers for companies like Apple, Microsoft, and Yahoo.

If the name Robert Smith sounds familiar, it’s because it is.

When he was invited to speak at the Morehouse College 2019 graduation, he promised to pay off the student debt for the entire graduating class.

Well, when you have a net worth of $5 billion, you can make those kinds of promises!

David Steward ($3.5 Billion)

David Steward is one of the richest black men in the world.

Born in the early 1950s, not only did he experience poverty, but he also experienced discrimination up to, during, and after the Civil Rights movement.

After receiving a business degree from Central Missouri State University, he would work a number of jobs that included being a production manager, sales representative, and senior account executive.

This all led up to him founding World Wide Technology (WWT) in 1990.

This company provides the “planning, procurement, and deployment of IT products.”

To put the success of his company into perspective even more, more than 70 of the Fortune 100 companies are customers of WWT.

Abdulsamad Rabiu ($3.3 Billion)

One of Africa’s richest billionaires, Abdulsamad Rabiu also hails from Nigeria.

He would move to America for a few years to gain his degree from Capital University before returning to Nigeria at 24.

In 1988, he founded BUA International Limited which had its purpose as a trading company.

From this, his wealth would continue to grow.

Now, the company works mostly in cement production and sugar refining.

Oprah Winfrey ($2.6 Billion)

Oprah is the richest black woman in the United States with a net worth of over $2.6 Billion.

Men, women, black, white – Oprah is one of the most well-known and beautiful people in the world.

Hailing from a small town in Mississippi, Oprah’s career really began in 1986 when she began her own talk show based out of Chicago.

Her show would run for an impressive 25 years with a number of memorable episodes.

Who could ever forget “YOU GET A CAR, YOU GET A CAR.”

After her show ended, her business wouldn’t stop there.

In 2008, she founded her own network, the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN).

She has acted in films like the Black classic, The Color Purple.

Oprah has been called the most influential women in the world, America’s most powerful woman, and the world’s most powerful celebrity.

And one of the highest awards in the country, she was given the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Barack Obama in 2013.

Patrice Motsepe ($2 Billion)

Patrice Motsepe is a South African businessman who founded African Rainbow Minerals in 1997.

Patrice Motsepe hails from Pretoria, South Africa.

He first got his taste of business from his father who was a small businessman with a shop that was popular among black mine workers.

He earned a BA from the University of Swaziland before earning a law degree from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.

While he began working towards his fortune in 1997 when he founded African Rainbow Minerals, it was 2008 that brought in extreme wealth when he became the first black African on Forbes’ list of billionaires.

Motsepe is also a part of Bill Gates’ and Warren Buffett’s Giving Pledge, which means he has promised to give half of his fortune to charity.

Strive Masiyiwa ($1.9 Billion)

Strive Masiyiwa was born in 1961 in Zimbabwe.

Due to political turmoil, they fled the country and settled in Zambia before Masiyiwa was sent to Scotland for his formal education.

With initial plans of returning to Zimbabwe to join the anti-government guerrilla movement, he changed courses and went to the University of Wales to earn a degree in electrical engineering.

He founded Econet Wireless Zimbabwe, a mobile phone network in 1998 and owns over half of the company.

Many of his earnings also come from also owning shares in other telecom companies around Burundi and Lesotho.

While he is worth tons of money, he also puts his money into many great avenues.

Alongside his wife, the two founded the Higherlife Foundation which gives underprivileged children the opportunity for education.

Isabel Dos Santos ($1.8 Billion)

While we’ve talked about the richest men in Africa, it’s time to talk about the richest woman.

Isabel Dos Santos came from a life of wealth.

After attending boarding school, she would study electrical engineering at King’s College in London.

She is the daughter of Jose Eduardo dos Santos, the former President of Angola who ruled from 1979 to 2017.

While she is currently on the list, this may not always be the case.

In 2018, the Angolan government began investigating dos Santos and attempting to prosecute her, an action that has led to her exile in Portugal.

Most recently, in early 2020, she was charged with embezzlement and money laundering which she denies.

Michael Jordan ($1.9 Billion)

While he is well-known for being one of the greatest NBA players, Michael Jordan's wealth came mostly from corporate partnerships.

Michael Jordan is often considered the greatest of all time.

You can’t have a conversation about NBA greats without his name being at the top of every list.

Michael Jordan first gained his fame from playing in the NBA, most notably with the Chicago Bulls.

While he even had a stint in baseball, which many of us pretend never happened, he returned to basketball in 1995 and solidified his career with more championship wins.

You might think most of his fortune came from playing basketball, but you’d be wrong.

According to Forbes, he earned $1.7 billion from corporate partners.

He also has a majority stake in the NBA team the Charlotte Hornets as well as a number of other sponsorship deals.

Michael Lee-Chin ($1.9 Billion)

Michael Jordan is often considered the greatest of all time.

You can’t have a conversation about NBA greats without his name being at the top of every list.

Michael Jordan first gained his fame from playing in the NBA, most notably with the Chicago Bulls.

While he even had a stint in baseball, which many of us pretend never happened, he returned to basketball in 1995 and solidified his career with more championship wins.

You might think most of his fortune came from playing basketball, but you’d be wrong.

According to Forbes, he earned $1.7 billion from corporate partners.

He also has a majority stake in the NBA team the Charlotte Hornets as well as a number of other sponsorship deals.

Kanye West ($1.3 Billion)

Kanye West is a popular Hip Hop artist who has made most of his fortune through his fashion endeavors.

Michael Jordan is often considered the greatest of all time.

You can’t have a conversation about NBA greats without his name being at the top of every list.

Michael Jordan first gained his fame from playing in the NBA, most notably with the Chicago Bulls.

While he even had a stint in baseball, which many of us pretend never happened, he returned to basketball in 1995 and solidified his career with more championship wins.

You might think most of his fortune came from playing basketball, but you’d be wrong.

According to Forbes, he earned $1.7 billion from corporate partners.

He also has a majority stake in the NBA team the Charlotte Hornets as well as a number of other sponsorship deals.

Mohammed Ibrahim ($1.1 Billion)

Mohammed Ibrahim was born in northern Sudan before moving to Egypt with his family.

His formal education began in Alexandria with a degree in electrical engineering from Alexandria University. 

He would then go on to earn a master’s from the University of Bradford before getting a PhD from the University of Birmingham.

His riches come from Celtel International, a mobile phone company he founded in 1998.

He would sell it for $3.4 billion, a sale that gained him $1.4 billion.

Folorunsho Alakija ($1 Billion)

Folorunsho Alakija is the richest woman in Nigeria with a net worth of $1 billion.

After bouncing back and forth between the UK and Nigeria for her education, she studied secretarial studies at university in London.

While she began working as the secretary for a few businesses, she would establish her own retail tailoring business.

After applying and receiving a license to explore part of Nigeria, she struck oil.

She is now the vice chair of Famfa Oil, a Nigerian oil exploration company.

Jay-Z ($1 Billion)

First a rapper and Hip Hop mogul, Jay Z transformed himself into a billionaire through numerous business ventures.

When he began his career, Jay Z was simply known as a rapper.

While many consider him one of the greatest acts of Hip Hop, he would soon become known as a businessman and Hip Hop’s first billionaire.

Hailing from Brooklyn, he founded Roc-A-Fella Records in 1995 and would release a number of highly acclaimed albums.

Since then, Jay Z has transformed himself into a businessman.

He founded Rocawear in 1999 and the luxury sports bar chain 40/40 Club.

He is now in charge of the streaming service Tidal after he acquired the parent company Aspiro.

This is what led Jay Z to make his way to the list.

From the streets of Brooklyn to Hip Hop’s first billionaire, he is the true rags to riches story.

How Many Black Billionaires Are There In America?

There are only six black billionaires in the United States.

After reading through this list, you should get an idea of just how many Black billionaires there are in the country.

I could make it easy and say, not many.

But to be exact, there are only 6 Black billionaires in the United States, all of them on this list.

This seems kind of hard to believe, especially since there are literally hundreds of billionaires around the world.

While there are tons of wealthy Blacks around the country, these six Americans bring it to a whole, new level.

How Many Black Billionaires Are In The World?

Out of the 2000+ billionaires in the world, only 15 of them are black.

Would you care to take a guess?

From this list, you know there are at least 15, but just how many Black billionaires are there in the world?

50?

100?

Both those guesses would be wrong.

There are only 15 Black billionaires in the world.

As in, the only Black billionaires are listed here.

There are literally thousands of billionaires around the world from Asia to Africa to North America, and only 15 of them are Black.

This is a great example of the differences in the black and white wealth gap.

While Black people and families have continued to strive for more, it seems as if it will always be impossible to close the impossibly big gap.

Who Are The Richest People In The World?

Jeff Bezos, the founder, CEO, and president of Amazon has a net worth of over $150 billion.

You know him well.

If you haven’t heard of Amazon or even used it, you might be living under a rock.

Jeff Bezos is the richest person in the world and that’s even after giving $36 billion to his ex-wife in their divorce.

The Amazon founder, CEO, and president has an astonishing net worth of $156.3 billion.

He is followed by Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft who is worth $111.3 billion.

The list continues with Bernard Arnault & Family ($108B), Warren Buffett ($77.6B), and Larry Ellison ($68.5B).

Richest Black Billionaires Conclusion

The handful of Black billionaires in the world demonstrate that the black-white wealth gap is still very large.

It’s clear that there’s a very big financial divide between the people on this list and the bulk of the Black population.

The number of Black billionaires in the world is minute compared to the complete list.

Even so, it’s great to see many of these entrepreneurs and businessmen and women make a name (and fortune) for themselves.

To check out the complete list, here’s Forbes World’s Billionaires list.