South African billionaire Johann Rupert, the newly crowned Africa’s richest man, owes his recent surge in wealth to the invaluable advantages of maintaining a diversified portfolio.
Having skillfully harnessed the potential of his diverse range of assets, Rupert has emerged triumphant in surpassing the long-reigning Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote, who had held the prestigious title for an impressive twelve-year span.
Rupert’s journey toward prominence started in the late 1980s, when he assumed the role of chairman at Rembrandt, succeeding his father, Anton Rupert.
A pivotal juncture in his illustrious career materialized as he orchestrated the spin-off of Rembrandt’s European assets, birthing the opulent Swiss luxury goods conglomerate Richemont.
With its strategic holdings in illustrious brands like Cartier, Montblanc, Van Cleef & Arpels, Azzedine Alaia, and Piaget, Richemont has played a pivotal role in fortifying Rupert’s billion-dollar empire.
With an impressive net worth of $12.2 billion, Rupert indisputably reigns as the most affluent individual on the African continent. His fortune stems from his substantial stake in the Swiss luxury goods powerhouse.
However, it is essential to note that his wealth also encompasses a diverse range of investments in various companies that actively operate within and beyond the borders of South Africa.
In addition to his substantial cash reserves amounting to $1.93 billion, Rupert’s formidable fortune encompasses holdings in Richemont and stakes in Remgro, a prominent South African investment vehicle.
Here are the five companies that constitute the bedrock of his wealth:
Johann Rupert, Africa’s richest person, has built a vast fortune mainly by owning a significant portion of Richemont, a prestigious Swiss conglomerate specializing in luxury goods. According to Forbes, Rupert’s impressive stake in Richemont, valued at more than $9 billion, accounts for the majority of his $12.2 billion wealth. This stake represents around 76 percent of his billion-dollar fortune, highlighting the substantial impact of Richemont’s renowned brands like Cartier, Chloe, Dunhill, Alaa, and Delvaux on Rupert’s immense wealth.
- Reinet Investments
In addition to his majority stake in Richemont, which accounts for about 76 percent of his wealth, Rupert owns nearly 25 percent ownership in Reinet Investments, a company established in 2008 to manage Richemont’s stake in British American Tobacco. Through the Anton Rupert Trust, based in South Africa, Rupert’s ownership of Reinet Investments solidifies his position as a respected and influential businessman. The market value of his stake in Reinet Investments amounts to $1.09 billion, affirming his prominent stature.
Rupert’s billion-dollar fortune includes a stake in Remgro, an investment vehicle-based in Stellenbosch, South Africa, with holdings in over 30 companies. Remgro recently made a significant investment by acquiring South African healthcare group Mediclinic International.
This acquisition, facilitated by a consortium that includes SAS Shipping Agencies Services Sarl (a subsidiary of MSC Mediterranean Shipping Co SA), has propelled Remgro’s share price to surge by more than twelve percent since the start of the year. Consequently, the market value of Rupert’s stake in the company has now reached $389 million.
- Grindrod Limited
Rupert’s fortune also includes stakes in Grindrod Limited, which is presently worth $7.62 million. Grindrod, listed on the JSE, is a South African company with global presence through subsidiaries, joint ventures, and associated companies in 31 countries. With over 4,700 dedicated employees, its mission is to generate sustainable returns and long-term value for shareholders and stakeholders.
- FirstRand Limited
You Rupert’s extensive investment portfolio includes a notable share in FirstRand, Africa’s largest financial services group, in terms of market capitalization. Since the beginning of the year, FirstRand’s shares have surged by more than 10 percent, propelling the group’s market capitalization beyond $21 billion.