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The 10 richest Black Americans in December 2022

The net worth of the 10 richest African-American billionaires rose by $910 million in 2022.



Tyler Perry.

Despite the disruptions caused by Russia’s war in Ukraine, monetary policy tightening, and valuation challenges facing publicly traded firms, which saw 360 UHNWIs lose their billionaire status in 2022, African-American billionaires saw a significant increase in their wealth.

Data tracked by Billionaires.Africa revealed that the net worth of the 10 richest African-American billionaires increased by $910 million in 2022, from $24 billion to $24.91 billion, as some of their businesses outperformed the previous year.

America’s richest Black man Robert Smith, who derives the majority of his wealth from his stake in Vista Equity Partners, experienced the biggest increase in his net worth during the year under review.

Meanwhile, the only African-American billionaire who experienced a wealth loss of more than $300 million during the year was cosmetics tycoon Robyn “Rihanna” Fenty, whose net worth dropped from $1.7 billion at the start of the year to $1.3 billion.

At the same time, Kanye West, now known as “Ye,” lost his billionaire status during the year after German sportswear company Adidas severed ties with the African-American multi-industry creative following a series of offensive and antisemitic comments he made in October.

1. Robert F. Smith

Source: Private Equity

Net worth: $8 billion

Robert F. Smith is America’s wealthiest Black man. He is the founder of Vista Equity Partners, a private equity firm focused on software investments that Smith founded in 2000 and has grown to more than $50 billion in assets with annual returns of 22 percent since its inception.

Almost all of Smith’s $8-billion fortune stems from his stake in the Texas-based private equity firm, which Forbes ranks 252nd in the world.

2. David Steward

Source: IT

Net worth: $6 billion

David Steward, America’s second-richest Black person, is the founder and chairman of Worldwide Technology, one of the largest African-American-owned businesses.

His company has evolved from a technology equipment reseller in 1990 to a leading provider of technology solutions. In 2020, the company’s revenue was $13.4 billion.

According to Forbes, Steward’s net worth has increased from $5.8 billion to $6 billion since the start of the year.

3. Oprah Winfrey

Source: Media

Net worth: $2.51 billion

According to Forbes, “The Queen of Talk,” Oprah Gail Winfrey, is the wealthiest Black woman in America, with a net worth of $2.51 billion. Oprah has turned her 25-year-long hit talk show into a media and business empire.

To preserve and grow her fortune, the leading media mogul has reinvested profits from her show, as well as profits from films such as “The Color Purple,” “Beloved,” and “Selma,” into key assets and entities in the media industry.

4. Michael Jordan

Source: Charlotte Hornets, Endorsements

Net worth: $1.7 billion

Michael Jordan earned $90 million in salary during his career, but according to Forbes, he has pocketed $1.8 billion (pre-tax) from corporate partners such as Nike, Hanes, and Gatorade.

Jordan is the chairman and principal owner of the Charlotte Hornets, an NBA team based in North Carolina. In 2019, Jordan agreed to sell a minority stake in the NBA team for $1.5 billion. He also owns a NASCAR team and a stake in DraftKings, a sports betting company.

5. Robyn “Rihanna” Fenty

Source: Cosmetics, Music

Net worth: $1.3 billion

Robyn “Rihanna” Fenty, the world’s youngest Black billionaire and renowned musician, is the second-richest Black woman in the United States.

Her net worth has dropped from $1.7 billion at the start of the year to $1.3 billion at the time of writing this report.

The majority of her fortune is derived from her ownership of Fenty Beauty, a rapidly expanding cosmetics company that sells her makeup and skincare products on Sephora shelves in the United States, Canada, Mexico, France, Spain, Denmark, Sweden, Thailand, Malaysia, Australia, Singapore, and the Middle East, as well as online to more than 150 countries.

6. Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter

Source: Liquor, Music Streaming

Net worth: $1.3 billion

Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter, an African-American businessman worth $1.3 billion at the time of writing, has seen his net worth increase by $300 million since 2021, when Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH) acquired a 50-percent stake in his Champagne brand, Armand de Brignac.

He made $297 million last year when he sold a majority stake in Tidal, his high-fidelity music streaming platform, to Jack Dorsey’s Square.

The rapper turned businessman and investor’s net worth has increased from $1 billion to $1.3 billion since February 2021, when LVMH signed a partnership deal with his Champagne brand.

7. Tyler Perry

Source: Films

Net worth: $1 billion

Tyler Perry is an African-American writer, producer, director, and actor who has amassed a fortune through his work. Perry owns 100 percent of his creative output, which includes more than 1,200 TV episodes, 22 feature films, and at least two dozen stage plays, as well as a 330-acre studio on the outskirts of Atlanta.

His “Madea” franchise, which has grossed over $660 million, accounts for a sizable portion of his $1-billion fortune.

He recently signed a four-film deal with Amazon Studios, a television and film producer and distributor based in the United States and one of Amazon’s subsidiaries.

8. Tiger Woods

Source: Golf, endorsements, real estate

Net worth: $1 billion

Tiger Woods, the world’s greatest golfer, has won more prize money than any other professional golfer in history, totaling $121 million. The majority of his fortune is derived from endorsements with companies such as Nike, Gatorade, Rolex, and Monster Energy.

Woods also has a golf course design company as well as a live production company. He is also a shareholder in Nexus Luxury Collection, a global hospitality real estate development and asset management firm. He also has a stake in a luxury mini-golf experience with multiple Florida locations, as well as a hospital software startup.

9. LeBron James

Source: Basketball, Endorsements, Investments

Net worth: $1 billion

LeBron James is the first active NBA player to reach the billion-dollar mark. His pretax earnings with the Cavaliers, Miami Heat, and his current team, the Los Angeles Lakers, total more than $385 million. Off the court, he has amassed well over $900 million (pretax) in earnings from commercial initiatives and endorsement deals with companies such as PepsiCo, Walmart, and his long-time sponsor, Nike. He also has a stake in Beats by Dre and the Blaze Pizza fan base.

10. Sean “Diddy” Combs

Source: Ciroc Vodka, Music, Investments

Net worth: $1 billion

The majority of Sean “Diddy” Combs’ wealth stems from his partnership with Diageo to create Ciroc Vodka, a move that saw him take the helm of Ciroc in 2007, guiding the brand from obscurity to multibillion-dollar status.

The African-American businessman became a billionaire on the same day that Kanye West, now officially known as “Ye,” lost his billionaire status due to the termination of his lucrative contract with Adidas. Since 2019, Combs’ net worth has risen from $740 million to $1 billion.

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Ye faces new hurdle in business and personal life as Australian visa denial looms

The potential denial of a visa may be the latest in a long list of repercussions facing Ye.



Kanye West, now formerly known as Ye.

Kanye West, who is now formerly known as Ye, may face a new hurdle in his business and personal life as he may be denied entry into Australia.

The African-American rapper-turned-mogul had reportedly planned to meet the family of his new partner, Melbourne native Bianca Censori, but his anti-Semitic comments in October may prevent him from entering the country.

The news of a potential ban was confirmed by Australian Minister for Education Jason Clare, who stated that individuals who have made similar comments have been denied visas in the past and that Ye will have to go through the same process and answer the same questions.

“People like that who’ve applied for visas to get into Australia in the past have been rejected,” Clare said. “I expect that if he does apply, he would have to go through the same process and answer the same questions that they did.” 

Anti-Defamation Commission Chairman Dvir Abramovich and opposition leader Peter Dutton have joined in calling for Ye to be banned from entering Australia due to his “appalling” comments.

The backlash from Ye’s anti-Semitic remarks has already had a significant impact on his business ventures and wealth. In October, he lost all of his partnerships through his brand Yeezy with companies such as Adidas and Balenciaga.

The termination of the Adidas partnership, which began in 2013, had a substantial impact on Ye’s net worth. Forbes reported that the termination of the deal led to a decline of more than $1.6 billion, taking Ye’s net worth from $2 billion to $400 million.

The cancellation of the partnership that grew the Yeezy line into a brand that accounted for up to €1.5 billion ($1.47 billion) of Adidas’ total sales over the last decade is expected to cost the German behemoth up to €250 million ($247 million) in earnings.

The aftermath of Ye’s anti-Semitic comments has been negative for his wealth and ranking as one of the richest Black individuals in the US and one of the richest businessmen globally.

The potential denial of a visa to enter Australia may be the latest in a long list of repercussions facing Ye because of his anti-Semitic comments. 

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East Africa

James Mwangi’s Equity Group to receive $4.1 million for acquisition of Spire Bank

Equity Group is the largest financial services conglomerate in East Africa.



James Mwangi.

Equity Group Holdings, the Kenyan financial services giant led by James Mwangi, is set to receive millions of dollars from Mwalimu Sacco’s acquisition of financially distressed Spire Bank, as the teachers-backed lender agreed to pay Equity Group Ksh510 million ($4.1 million).

The deal is structured as an asset purchase transaction, backed by the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK), and will see Equity Group assume control over the assets and liabilities of the troubled bank.

The $4.1-million payment by Mwalimu Sacco to Equity represents the difference between the assets and liabilities of Spire Bank, implying that the bank holds zero value and the teachers have lost millions of dollars after purchasing a majority stake in 2014.

Mwalimu Sacco CEO Kenneth Odhiambo said the key consideration was to stop the bleeding and preserve Sacco’s bottomline for its members.

Equity Group will settle all redundancy costs for the more than 100 employees who will lose their jobs following the deal. The bank’s non-performing loans stand at Ksh2.63 billion ($21.1 million), and Equity’s immediate task will be to step up collections and recoveries.

The process of exiting Spire Bank was not as seamless as the initial acquisition, with Mwalimu Sacco citing the bank’s decline as beginning after the withdrawal of Naushad Merali’s deposits worth Ksh1.7 billion ($13.7 million), which represented one-fifth of the bank’s total deposits. 

The takeover of the troubled Spire Bank may present additional challenges and opportunities for Equity Group, which under the leadership of Kenyan businessman, Mwangi reported profits in excess of $280 million in the first nine months of 2022.

As of today, Equity Group shares on the Nairobi Securities Exchange are trading at Ksh44.95 ($0.361) per share, a 0.99 percent decrease from their closing price on Fri., Jan. 27.

This values the company at Ksh170 billion ($1.36 billion) and Mwangi’s 3.38-percent stake at Ksh5.74 billion ($46.1 million).

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Nigerian billionaire Abdul Samad Rabiu’s food conglomerate achieves milestone with $195-million profit

Rabiu and his son, Isyaku Naziru Rabiu, own 99.8 percent of BUA Foods.



Abdul Samad Rabiu
Abdul Samad Rabiu. ©Billionaires.Africa

BUA Foods Plc, a leading food conglomerate majority owned by Africa’s fourth-richest man Nigerian billionaire Abdul Samad Rabiu, has achieved a milestone in its financial performance as it reported record-high earnings at the end of its 2022 fiscal year.

With a profit surge surpassing N90 billion ($195 million), the company’s latest earnings report highlights its impressive growth and financial strength. The Abdul Samad Rabiu-led food conglomerate has reported a record high in its financial performance, with its profit for the year ending Dec. 31, 2022, surging by a staggering 30 percent.

The unaudited financial statements reveal that the group’s earnings rose from N69.77 billion ($151.5 million) in 2021 to N90.4 billion ($196.3 million) at the end of 2022, driven by an increase in revenue from its diverse product portfolio of sugar, pasta, bakery flour, and wheat bran.

The remarkable growth reflects the company’s ability to continuously expand its offerings and maximize profitability in a competitive market.

BUA Foods’ revenue surged from N333.37 billion ($723.8 million) to N417.82 billion ($907.1 million) due to increased sales of non-fortified sugar N79.15 billion ($171.8 million) to N144.29 billion ($313.2 million) and other food items such as sugar molasses, bakery flour, pasta, and wheat bran.

The increase in consumer demand for food items, including stockpiling, resulted in higher prices and a corresponding boost in revenue for the group.

The robust performance led to an increase in retained earnings and shareholder equity from N192.66 billion ($418.26 million) and N200.7 billion ($435.7 million) in 2021 to N237.15 billion ($514.86 million) and N245.21 billion ($532.35 million) in 2022.

The outstanding financial performance is expected to result in a substantial increase in dividend earnings for Rabiu and his son, Isyaku Naziru Rabiu, with their 99.8-percent ownership in the consolidated food conglomerate.

This will be a marked improvement from the N62.9 billion ($151.6 million) that they received in dividends last year.

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