As the New Year unfolds, Africa’s business landscape continues to showcase a diverse array of financial trajectories among its most prominent figures. This Week In Review: A Snapshot of African Wealth Dynamics covers the significant financial news in Africa from Jan. 1 to 5. This review, based on insights from Billionaires.Africa, captures the highs and lows in the fortunes of some of Africa’s leading business personalities in 2023 and over the first week of January 2024.
South African billionaire Michiel Le Roux witnessed a remarkable upswing in his wealth last year with a $104.5-million increase due to the surge in Capitec Bank shares. On the other hand, fellow South African mogul Koos Bekker recorded a significant wealth loss of $300 million, impacted by declining shares in Prosus N.V.
In Kenya, noted banker James Mwangi successfully led the merger of Cogebanque with Equity Bank Rwanda, enhancing the group’s footprint in East Africa. Meanwhile, the Ndegwa family, associated with ILAM Fahari I-Reit, continues trading on the Nairobi Securities Exchange amidst pending delisting.
The El-Sewedy family in Egypt saw a substantial increase in their wealth by $775 million in 2023 through Elsewedy Electric, solidifying their status as one of Egypt’s wealthiest families. South African businessman Tshepo Mahloele also enjoyed a surge in his fortune with a $66-million gain from his stake in Capitec Bank.
Contrastingly, Kenyan multimillionaire banker James Mwangi faced a $19.2-million loss in 2023, mainly due to currency devaluation and share price decline. Nigerian businessman Dozy Mmobuosi is embroiled in legal challenges in the US, facing charges that could lead to a lengthy prison sentence.
In Botswana, Farouk Ismail saw a $3.4-million decrease in the value of his stake in Choppies Enterprises in 2023. In Burkina Faso, banking leader Idrissa Nassa collaborated with a Canadian firm in a $100-million credit facility for the Kiaka Gold Project.
The Dangote Oil Refinery in Nigeria, owned by billionaire Aliko Dangote, marked a significant milestone with the arrival of its fourth shipment of crude oil, signaling progress toward operational readiness. Ghanaian entrepreneur Daniel McKorley announced plans to hire 2,500 workers for his salt company, Electrochem Ghana.
Ethiopia’s wealthiest individual Mohammed Al-Amoudi enjoyed a considerable wealth increase of $3.59 billion in 2023, largely due to his successful investments. Meanwhile, Nigerian billionaire Abdul Samad Rabiu faced a substantial wealth reduction of $1.8 billion last year, primarily due to the devaluation of the Nigerian naira.
This week’s review paints a vivid picture of the evolving economic landscape in Africa, highlighting the resilience and adaptability of its business leaders in the face of global financial dynamics. The stories of these individuals not only reflect their personal business acumen but also offer insights into broader economic trends and opportunities within the continent.