African American form a significant fraction in the population of the United States of America. Some of the wealthiest African Americans have contributed majorly to a vast amount of industries. These include oil, music, steel, and communication industries. These people have overcome the boundaries of racism to achieve immense success in their fields. The color of their skin definitely hasn’t stopped them from becoming some of the greatest personalities of all-time. A few are the idea examples of the ‘rags-to-riches’ story that would inspire the generations to come. Keep reading to find out who the top ten richest African Americans of 2017 are with a sneak peek into their professional life:
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Here is the list of Top 10 Richest African Americans in The World
10. Robert Johnson
Robert Louis Johnson is a businessman who is the founder of BET, a television channel. BET stands for Black Entertainment Television. He has several other roles including being a media magnate, executive, philanthropist, investor, and founder of RLJ Companies which is a conglomerate of various businesses. This man also owned a majority the Charlotte Bobcats previously. He graduated from Princeton University and got a job in the public affairs section for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting in Washington, D.C. Soon, he became the vice president of government relations in the National Cable and Television Association. Then in 1980, he founded the BET channel.
9. Sean Combs
Sean Combs is also known by his stage name, P. Diddy, and he is a rapper, singer, songwriter, actor, record producer, and businessman. He initially worked as a talent director at Uptown Records, and then founded his own label, Bad Boy Entertainment in the year 1993. Some of his successful albums include No Way Out, Forever, The Saga Continues…, and Press Play. The singer has won three Grammy awards as well as two MTV Video music awards. Aside from music, he has a clothing line called “Sean by Sean Combs” for which he obtained a Council of Fashion Designers of America award.
8. Mohammed Ibrahim
This Sudanese-British businessman pursued an interest in mobile communications and became a billionaire. He found the company Celtel after working for other telecommunications company. His company had over 24 million cell phone subscribers in 14 different countries in Africa when he sold it in 2005. Then, Ibrahim started the Mo Ibrahim Foundation which encourages better governance in Africa as well as evaluating the nations’ performance. Aside from being a businessman, he is a member of the London Business School’s Africa Regional Advisory Board.
7. Abdul Samad Rabiu
This Nigerian businessman was the founder of the BUA Group which is a holding company in Nigeria that focuses on manufacturing, infrastructure, and agriculture. Aside from his company, he is the chairman of the Nigerian Bank of Industry. The BUA International Limited was established in the year 1988 for the purpose of trading commodities including rice, edible oil, flour, iron, and steel. Later, the company acquired the Nigerian Oil Mills Limited which is the largest edible oil processing company in Nigeria. The BUA Foundation supports causes like the construction of a pediatric ward at the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital.
6. Michael Jordan
The legendary Micahel Jordan is an American retired professional basketball player as well as a businessman and the owner and chairman of the Charlotte Hornets. He is one of the best marketed athletes in his generation and is considered as one of the reasons of the popularity of the NBA all around the world in the 1980’s and 1990’s. Michael Jordan played for the University of North Carolina as a freshman in college. He then joined the Chicago Bulls in the year 1984 and gained popularity for his slam dunks and leaping ability. Many honors have been awarded to him including the Most Valuable Player and Al-NBA First Team designations.
5. Patrice Motsepe
He is a mining businessman in South Africa and is the founder and executive chairman of African Rainbow Minerals. This company had interests in metals like gold, ferrous metals, base metals, and platinum. He is also a board member of Harmony Gold which is the 12th biggest miner of gold in the world and the deputy chairman of Sanlam. Motsepe had the name of being South Africa’s richest man starting in the year of 2012. In the year of 2013, he signed a pledge called The Giving Pledge to give half of his wealth to charity. He is one amongst the Top 10 Richest African Americans 2017.
4. Folorunsho Alakija
Alakija is a businesswoman who is involved in industries of fashion, oil, and printing. Her positions include being the group managing director of The Rose of Sharon Group and the executive vice-chairman of Famfa oil Limited. She started her job as a secretary at Sijuade Enterprises in Lagos, Nigeria. Eventually, she became a national president and lifelong trustee of the Fashion Designers Association of Nigeria. She is listed as the second most powerful woman of Africa as of 2015 and the 87th most powerful female in the world according to Forbes ranking.
3. Femi Otedola
This Nigerian businessman is the chairman of the company Forte Oil Plc which is a company that imports fuel products. Aside from the Forte Oil Plc company, he is also the founder of Zenon Petroleum and Gas Ltd, as well as other businesses which include shipping and real estate. His philanthropy includes donating to the Michael Otedola University Scholarship as well as the National Ecumenical Centre which is the well-known place for Christian worship in Abuja.
2. Oprah Winfrey
This talk show host, actress, producer, media proprietor, and philanthropist is the second richest African American in the world. Her show The Oprah Winfrey Show is a well-known show which was syndicated from the years 1986 to 2011. It was the highest-rated television program of that kind. In the year 2013, she received honorary doctorates from Duke and Harvard universities as well as the Presidential Medal of Freedom. She is truly an example of a ‘rags to riches’ story as she was born into poverty, but changed her life through her talent of talking. In the year of 2014, she overtook Chief Executive Officer of eBay’s spot as the richest self-made woman in America.
1. Isabel Dos Santos
Isabel Dos Santos is the richest woman in Angola, as well as the whole continent of Africa. She is the daughter of the President of Angola, Jose Eduardo dos Santos. Santos is one of BBC’s most influential women in the world. This is due to her leadership role in the economy and development of Africa. She controls 51% of Condis which is a partnership for the development and operation of a retail trading company in her country. She is also appointed as chairwoman of the Angolan state oil company in 2017.
This was the list of the Top 10 Richest African Americans in the World for 2017. They have achieved incredible success in their career and as a result have earned immense fortunes too. Their success stories are truly inspirational and they stand as icons for success in their fields.