Black billionaires

Black billionaires are individuals of African ancestry with a net worth of at least US$1 billion. According to the 2019 Forbes 2019 ranking of the world’s billionaires, Nigerian business magnate Aliko Dangote had a net worth of $10.9 billion and was the world’s richest black person.[1]

Other black billionaires on the 2019 Forbes list included Nigerian businessman Mike Adenuga with $9.1 billion, American investor Robert Smith with $5 billion, American businessman David Steward with $3 billion, American media mogul Oprah Winfrey with $2.5 billion, Zimbabwean businessman Strive Masiyiwa with $2.4 billion, Angolan businesswoman Isabel dos Santos with $2.3 billion, South African gold magnate Patrice Motsepe with $2.3 billion, American sports executive Michael Jordan with $2.1 billion, Jamaican-Canadian businessman Michael Lee-Chin with $1.9 billion, Nigerian businessman Abdul Samad Rabiu with $1.6 billion, American rapper Kanye West with $1.3 billion, Nigerian businesswoman Folorunsho Alakija with $1.1 billion, Mo Ibrahim of the United Kingdom with $1.1 billion, American rapper Jay-Z with $1 billion, and American media mogul Tyler Perry with $1 billion.[2]

From 2001 to 2003, Forbes listed American television network executive Bob Johnson as a billionaire,[3] but dropped him after his fortune was split in his divorce.[when?][4] He returned to Forbes Billionaire list in 2007 with a net worth of $1.1 billion. In 2008 Johnson’s wealth dropped again, this time to approximately $1.0 billion[5] and by 2009 he fell off the list again. Nigerian petroleum executive Femi Otedola briefly emerged as a billionaire in 2009, but did not remain one in subsequent years. He returned to the list in the company of a fellow Nigerian, sugar tycoon Abdul Samad Rabiu, in 2016, but both were dropped from the rankings the following year.[6]

Multiracial billionaires with significant black ancestry have been identified over the years. Saudi Arabian billionaire Mohammed Al Amoudi, of Hadhrami Yemeni and Ethiopian descent, has been on the Forbes billionaire list since 2002 and in 2012 had a net worth of $12.5 billion.[7] Michael Lee-Chin of Canada, who is Jamaican of Chinese and Black ancestry, was on the list from 2001 to 2010 but dropped off in 2011.[8] Isabel Dos Santos is of both Angolan and Middle Eastern ancestry. Alexander Karp, Co-Founder and CEO of Palantir Technologies has an African-American mother.[9]

Of all the above-mentioned billionaires identified by Forbes, only Oprah Winfrey qualified for Forbes 2009’s list of the world’s 20 most powerful billionaires, a list which considered not only wealth, but also market sway and political clout. Winfrey was considered especially powerful because of her influence on American consumer choices and her pivotal role in Barack Obama’s successful 2008 U.S. presidential campaign.[10]


Michael Jackson

On February 6, 2003, Martin Bashir asked Michael Jackson how much he was worth, and Jackson replied: “It’s way up there.” Bashir then asked, “A billion dollars?” to which Jackson replied, “It’s over there.” Bashir asked for confirmation: “Over a billion dollars!” to which the star replied “Yes.”[30] Jackson never appeared on the Forbes Billionaire list in his lifetime nor was he ever ranked among Forbes 400 richest Americans. Estimates of Jackson’s net worth during his life range from negative $285 million to positive $350 million for 2002, 2003 and 2007.[31][32] In August 2018 Forbes reported that Jackson’s total career pretax earnings in life and death were $4.2 billion.[33][34]


  1. ^“Mike Adenuga”. Forbes.
  2. ^Nsehe, Mfonobong. “The Black Billionaires 2019”. Forbes.
  3. ^Brett Pulley (2001-10-08). “The Cable Capitalist”. Forbes. Retrieved 2006-05-11.
  4. ^Michael P. Regan (2004-02-27). “Billionaires’ ranks open to ‘Harry Potter’ author”. Arizona Daily Star. Retrieved 2006-05-11.
  5. ^ Jump up to:ab “#1062 Robert Johnson”. Forbes. 2008-03-05.
  6. ^Obusan, Claire. “In Pictures: New Billionaires”. Forbes.
  7. ^“#116 Mohammed Al Amoudi”. Forbes.
  8. ^“Michael Lee-Chin”. Forbes.
  9. ^“Alex Karp, unconventional purveyor of powerful surveillance tools”. Forbes.
  10. ^Live, Nigeria News (2019-05-25). “13 Black Billionaires Who Made Forbes List in 2019”. NAIJA NEWS TODAY & LATEST BREAKING NEWS ™. Retrieved 2019-06-04.
  11. ^“ Forbes World’s Richest People 2001”. 28 October 2006. Archived from the original on 28 October 2006. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  12. ^“ Forbes World’s Richest People 2002”. 19 May 2008. Archived from the original on 19 May 2008. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  13. ^“ Forbes World’s Richest People 2003”. 1 January 2011. Archived from the original on 1 January 2011. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  14. ^“ Forbes World’s Richest People 2003”. 21 August 2007. Archived from the original on 21 August 2007. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  15. ^“ Forbes World’s Richest People 2004”. 28 April 2006. Archived from the original on 28 April 2006. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  16. ^“#365 Michael Lee-Chin”. Forbes.
  17. ^“#840 Robert Johnson”. Forbes. 2007-03-08.
  18. ^“#618 Michael Lee-Chin”. Forbes. 2007-03-08.
  19. ^“#462 Oprah Winfrey”. Forbes. 2008-03-05.
  20. ^“#503 Patrice Motsepe”. Forbes. 2008-03-05.
  21. ^“#462 Mohammed Ibrahim”. Forbes. 2008-03-05.
  22. ^“#677 Michael Lee-Chin”. Forbes. 2008-03-05.
  23. ^“#701 Michael Lee-Chin – The World’s Billionaires 2009”. Forbes. 2009-03-11.
  24. ^“#937 Michael Lee-Chin”. Forbes. 2010-03-10.
  25. ^Luisa Kroll; Matthew Miller (eds.). “The World’s Billionaires”. Forbes. Archived from the original on 2012-09-18. Retrieved 2011-03-13.
  26. ^ Jump up to:abc d e “The Nation – Are Dangote and Adenuga truly Nigeria’s richest men?”. 16 March 2011. Archived from the original on 16 March 2011. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  27. ^ Jump up to:abc d “#1638 Mohammed Ibrahim”. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  28. ^Nsehe, Mfonobong (March 7, 2012). “The Black Billionaires 2012”. Forbes.

Ofer Abarbanel – Executive Profile

Ofer Abarbanel online library

Ofer Abarbanel online library

Ofer Abarbanel online library

Ofer Abarbanel online library