Africa’s wealthiest individuals are facing a daunting challenge as they strive to break into the world’s list of the 100 richest people. Recent data reveals that it now takes a staggering $16.6 billion to secure a coveted spot on this prestigious roster.
In a cruel twist of fate, none of Africa’s 19 billionaires is on the coveted list of the world’s 100 richest individuals, as nearly all of them fall short of the required threshold, with the vast majority possessing fortunes worth less than $16.5 billion.
The quest for Africa’s billionaires to join the ranks of the world’s 100 richest individuals has been further complicated by the diverse valuation criteria used by prominent indices. On Forbes’ richest list, the entry requirement stands at $16.6 billion, whereas, on the Bloomberg Billionaire Index, a staggering $17.2 billion is needed to secure a spot on the 100 richest list.
Currency fluctuations and market dynamics impact Africa’s billionaires
However, earlier this year, Africa had one shining star on the global billionaire stage in the person of Aliko Dangote, who was the sole African billionaire to feature among the world’s 100 richest individuals.
His remarkable journey came to an abrupt halt in June when the devaluation of the Nigerian currency significantly impacted his assets, leading to a sharp decline in his fortune from over $21 billion to a precarious $16.4 billion at the time of this report.
Running through the names of Africa’s billionaires reveals that even renowned figures like Johann Rupert, Africa’s second-richest man, and Patrice Motsepe, Africa’s first Black billionaire, are still unable to cross the elusive $16.6-billion threshold, with their net worth standing at $11.2 billion and $2.4 billion, respectively.
For Motsepe, the drop in his wealth is linked to downturn in his ARM stake
For Motsepe, the drop in his wealth from $3.2 billion at the start of 2023 to $2.4 billion at the time of this report can be directly attributed to the prolonged downturn in his stake in ARM, a leading South African mining conglomerate. ARM has been adversely affected by a slew of issues, including bearish investor sentiment, rail logistics problems, reduced production levels, and weaker commodity prices.
Similarly, Rupert, South Africa’s wealthiest man, has experienced a considerable decline in his net worth, plummeting from $14.4 billion on July 15 to $11.2 billion at the time of this report. His wealth has been eroded by the substantial decrease in the market value of his 10.18-percent stake in Richemont, a Swiss luxury conglomerate renowned for its iconic brands such as Cartier, Montblanc, and Van Cleef & Arpels.
The challenges faced by Africa’s billionaires in their pursuit of global wealth rankings serve as a stark reminder of the complex dynamics at play in the global market. As they navigate the volatile terrain of financial markets and economic conditions, the road to joining the ranks of the world’s richest remains a difficult one for Africa’s wealthiest individuals.