Home » Eleven African billionaires face steep losses in 2022: What caused the decline?

Eleven African billionaires face steep losses in 2022: What caused the decline?

by Omokolade Ajayi
Patrice Motsepe

In 2022, the world was hit by a series of economic challenges that took a significant toll on the wealth of billionaires. According to data from the Bloomberg Billionaires Index and Forbes, the 500 richest billionaires lost a staggering $1.4 trillion, the steepest drop ever recorded.

The loss can be attributed to a number of factors, including the rise in global interest rates, caused by the steep rise in inflation amid macroeconomic volatility, geopolitical tensions caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and global supply chain difficulties.

These challenges also had a significant impact on African billionaires, and while three managed to defy these challenges and increase their wealth, eleven others were not as fortunate, with their net worth declining significantly due to the macroeconomic volatility, geopolitical issues, and supply chain problems that shaped the year.

Of the eleven billionaires who saw a decline in their net worth, Zimbabwean billionaire Strive Masiyiwa experienced the steepest loss at $1.5 billion, followed by Ethiopia’s Mohammed Al Amoudi and Nigerian telco billionaire Mike Adenuga.

1. Strive Masiyiwa

Wealth loss in 2022: $1.5 billion

Net worth: $1.2 billion

Strive Masiyiwa, Zimbabwe’s richest man, saw his net worth plummet by $1.5 billion in 2022, from $2.7 billion at the start of the year to $1.2 billion at the end of the year, owing to a drop in the share prices of his publicly traded businesses on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, particularly Econet Zimbabwe and EcoCash Holdings.

Masiyiwa’s fortune includes a 52.85-percent stake in Econet Zimbabwe, the country’s largest telecom services provider, and a 30-percent stake in EcoCash Holdings, a diverse smart technology group that uses digital and financial technologies to create shared economies, drive financial inclusion, and promote economic empowerment.

2. Mohammed Al Amoudi

Wealth loss in 2022: $1.25 billion

Net worth: $5.46 billion

Mohammed Al Amoudi, Ethiopia’s richest man, saw his net worth plummet by $1.25 billion in 2022 due to a decline in the market value of his industrial assets in Sweden, Saudi Arabia, and Ethiopia.

The majority of Al-Amoudi’s fortune comes from Preem, Sweden’s largest oil refiner, and Svenska Petroleum Exploration, another Swedish oil and gas exploration and production company.

According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, his net worth will fall by $1.25 billion in 2022, from $6.71 billion to $5.46 billion.

3. Mike Adenuga

Wealth loss in 2022: $1.1 billion

Net worth: $5.6 billion

Mike Adenuga, a Nigerian telecom billionaire and oil mogul, saw his net worth plummet by more than a billion dollars in 2022 as the valuation of his privately held businesses plummeted.

The billionaire businessman, who derives the majority of his fortune from his privately held telecom company, Globacom Limited, as well as his investments in the Nigerian oil industry through Conoil Producing and Conpetro Limited, saw his net worth fall by $1.1 billion in 2022, from $6.7 billion to $5.6 billion at the start of the year.

4. Johann Rupert

Wealth loss in 2022: $1.03 billion

Net worth: $10.9 billion

Johann Rupert, South Africa’s richest man, and Africa’s second-wealthiest businessman saw his net worth fall by $1.03 billion in 2022, owing to a drop in the market capitalization of his Swiss luxury goods holding company, Compagnie Financiere Richemont (Richemont).

According to Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Rupert’s net worth fell by $1.03 billion in 2022, from $11.9 billion at the start of 2022 to $10.9 billion.

5. Natie Kirsh

Wealth loss in 2022: $821 million

Net worth: $7.45 billion

Nathaniel “Natie” Kirsh, the richest man in Eswatini (formerly Swaziland), saw his net worth fall by $821 million in 2022, falling from $8.27 billion at the start of 2022 to $7.45 billion.

The decline in his net worth can be attributed to the decline in the market value of his portfolio investments through Kirsh Group, a closely held conglomerate that owns a majority stake in Jetro Holdings, a food supply company.

6. Aliko Dangote

Wealth loss in 2022: $393 million

Net worth: $18.7 billion

Aliko Dangote, Africa’s richest man, saw his net worth fall by $393 million in 2022, from $19.1 billion to $18.7 billion.

Dangote, who ranks as the world’s richest black person, derives the majority of his fortune from an 86 percent stake in Dangote Cement, which is currently worth $8.64 billion.

The decline in the market value of his flagship company, Dangote Cement, Africa’s largest cement company, is to blame for the multimillion-dollar drop in his net worth.

7. Michiel Le Roux

Wealth loss in 2022: $300 million

Net worth: $1.4 billion

Michiel Le Roux, a South African billionaire banker, and leading businessman, saw his net worth fall by $300 million, from $1.7 billion to $1.3 billion, due to a drop in the market value of his 11.41-percent stake in Capitec Bank, a Stellenbosch-based financial services provider and one of South Africa’s largest retail banks.

8. Aziz Akhannouch

Wealth loss in 2022: $300 million

Net worth: $1.9 billion

Aziz Akhannouch, Morocco’s prime minister and a leading businessman who derives the majority of his fortune from Akwa Group, a Moroccan conglomerate with oil and gas investments, saw his net worth fall by $300 million in 2022, from $2.2 billion to $1.9 billion.

9. Othman Benjelloun

Wealth loss in 2022: $300 million

Net worth: $1.2 billion

Othman Benjelloun, Morocco’s second-richest man after Prime Minister Aziz Akhannouch, saw his net worth fall from $1.5 billion to $1.2 billion in 2022, a total loss of $300 million.

The majority of his fortune stems from his investment in the BMCE Group, a multinational pan-African banking conglomerate with operations in 18 African countries and representative offices in Europe and Asia.

10. Patrice Motsepe

Wealth loss in 2022: $300 million

Net worth: $3.2 billion

Patrice Motsepe, the richest Black South African, saw his net worth drop by $300 million in 2022 as a result of his 40-percent stake in African Rainbow Minerals (ARM), a South African diversified mining and minerals company.

11. Koos Bekker

Wealth loss in 2022: $200 million

Net worth: $2.5 billion

South African billionaire Jacobus “Koos” Bekker’s net worth fell by $200 million in 2022, from $2.7 billion to $2.5 billion, due to a decline in the market value of his 0.86-percent stake in Prosus N.V. and another 0.4-percent stake in Naspers, a global internet group and one of the world’s largest technology investors and holding companies.

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