Nigerian’s own billionaire Aliko Dangote has been ranked among the top 25 richest men in the world by Forbes magazine.
The magazine reported that Dangote’s 93 per cent stake in the cement company is now worth $19.5 billion. With his fortune, Dangote is richer than Russia’s richest man, Alisher Usmanov, richer than India’s Lakshmi Mittal and running neck and neck with India’s Mukesh Ambani.
He was named Africa’s first $20 billion man. This entails that with $20.5 billion, Dangote Cement becomes the first Nigerian company to achieve a market capitalization of over $20 billion.
The Dangote Group, originally a small trading firm founded in 1977, is now a multi-trillion naira conglomerate with operations in, Benin, Ghana, Nigeria and Togo. Dangote’s businesses include food processing, cement manufacturing, and freight.
The Dangote Group dominates the sugar market in Nigeria: it is the major sugar supplier to the country’s soft drinks companies, breweries, and confectioners. Dangote Group has moved from being a trading company to Nigeria’s largest industrial group including: Dangote Sugar Refinery, Dangote Cement, and Dangote Flour amongst others.
It is the largest refinery in Africa and the third largest in the world producing 800,000 tonnes of sugar annually. Dangote Group also owns salt factories and flour mills and is a major importer of rice, fish, pasta, cement and fertilizer. The company also exports cotton, cashew nuts, cocoa, sesame seed and ginger to several countries. Dangote Group also has major investments in real estate, banking, transport, textiles and oil and gas. It employs over 11,000 people and is the largest industrial conglomerate in West Africa.