Home » Robert F. Smith regains top spot as America’s richest Black billionaire

Robert F. Smith regains top spot as America’s richest Black billionaire

David Steward’s recent wealth slump propels Robert F. Smith back to the top

by Omokolade Ajayi
Robert F. Smith

Key Points:

  • Robert F. Smith dethrones David Steward as America’s richest Black billionaire after a $1 billion drop in Steward’s WWT stake.
  • Smith’s steady net worth and Vista Equity Partners’ near $20 billion fund raise solidify his position and highlight investor confidence in the firm’s tech focus.
  • Robert F. Smith’s resilience and Vista’s success solidify his position as a major influencer in the tech investment world.

Robert F. Smith, the founder, chairman, and CEO of Vista Equity Partners, has secured the top spot as America’s richest Black billionaire. This comes after a month-long reign of David Steward, majority shareholder and co-founder of World Wide Technology (WWT).

Net worth shift: Steward slips, Smith steadies

Smith’s resurgence coincides with a $1 billion decline in Steward’s net worth, dropping from $12.3 billion to $11.3 billion. This decrease is attributed to the recent market value pullback of Steward’s 59 percent stake in WWT, an information services and hardware provider.

Bloomberg uses the enterprise value-to-sales multiple of three publicly traded peers (Insight Enterprises, Eplus, and CDW) to value WWT. This gives WWT a current market value of $19.15 billion at the time of drafting this report.

While Steward’s wealth has dipped, Smith’s fortune remains steady at $11.4 billion according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. This solidifies his position as America’s richest Black billionaire and the world’s second-richest behind Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote.

Vista Equity’s $20 billion fund signals strong investor confidence

Further bolstering Robert F. Smith’s position, Vista Equity Partners is nearing the finalization of its eighth flagship fund, exceeding $20 billion in commitments. This reflects strong investor interest in large-scale technology acquisitions.

Under Smith’s leadership, Vista Equity Partners boasts $101 billion in assets and a stellar reputation, generating a 31 percent annualized return since its founding. With over 610 transactions valued at a combined $302 billion, Vista is well-positioned to thrive in the evolving technology investment landscape.

Smith’s renewed wealth reflects Vista’s strength

Smith’s recent return to the top spot among Black billionaires highlights his financial resilience and Vista’s enduring success under his leadership. As he navigates the ever-changing tech investment landscape, Smith’s influence remains a key driver in shaping the industry’s future.

Since founding Vista Equity Partners in 2000, Robert F. Smith, with a current net worth of $11.4 billion, has been the driving force behind its success. The firm has become a leading private equity player focused on software, data, and technology-enabled businesses. Vista’s portfolio encompasses over 85 companies, employing more than 95,000 people globally.

You may also like


The world’s premier source of news on Africa’s billionaires and UHNWIs.


Get the daily email to stay informed about African billionaires and UHNWIs. Get informed and entertained, for free.

Latest News

@2024 – Billionaires.Africa. All Rights Reserved.