Previous Africa-rich-lists named as few as 16 billionaires, but Ventures magazine has said it's exhaustive research had identified at least 55 in a continent where the wealthy often fiercely protect details about their fortunes.The pan-African business magazine said it was able to uncover dozens of new billionaires by using “on-the-ground knowledge” to overcome hurdles that may have “hampered” other researchers.
Of the 55, 20 are Nigerian, including several oil barons, while South Africa and Egypt boast nine and eight respectively.
Ventures’ supported reports by Forbes which listed Nigeria’s Aliko Dangote as Africa’s richest man with a fortune of $20.2 billion (15 billion euros).
The continent’s richest woman is Nigeria’s Folorunsho Alakija, whose Fama Oil owns an offshore oil block, which she acquired in 1993 “at a relatively inexpensive price”, likely through a helpful connection, the magazine said.
Alakija studied fashion in London, then made dresses for Maryam Babaginda, the late wife of Nigerian military dictator Ibrahim Babaginda.