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Aliko Dangote is the richest man in Africa and the richest Black man in the whole wide world.
Born in Kano, Nigeria on the 10th day of April in the year 1997 to Mohammed Dangote and Mariya Sanusi Dantata, you can say Aliko Dangote was born and raised in money, considering the fact that he is the great-grandson of a one-time richest man in west Africa, Alhaji Alhassan Dantata who traded in kola and ground nuts. Unfortunately, Aliko’s father died when Aliko was eight years old.
The Richest reports he was nurtured and raised by his maternal grandfather who was a successful building material trader.
Born into a family of successful entrepreneurs, Aliko Dangote quickly grew to become an astute businessman and entrepreneur who remains at the cutting edge of state-of-the-art innovations in Africa and the world at large.
Aliko Dangote had his basic, elementary and secondary education in Nigeria before proceeding to Al-Azhar University in Egypt where he obtained his bachelor’s degree in business administration.
Shortly after graduating from the university, Aliko returned to Kono in Nigeria where he consulted his uncle for a loan with which he intended to start a cement trading business.
As soon as he got the loan from his uncle, he relocated to Lagos, the commercial hub of the country in the southwest where he utilized the funds to begin a cement importation business which later metamorphosed into Dangote Group, a conglomerate that comprises various business ventures and investments.
Through the 80s and 90s, Dangote diversified into flour, sugar, rice, milk, fish, and iron trading. He would later travel to Brazil to study manufacturing in 1996.
This helped him to shift the focus of his business from solely trading to expanded manufacturing as he saw the need for a local manufacturer and a market that is not yet saturated in a country with an ever-growing population.
After learning enough to become a manufacturer, Aliko Dangote, having made a lot of money from trading, started building salt and sugar refineries in 1999, as if that wasn’t enough, he also started building a flour mill and flour factory that same year.
Seeing the success of his manufacturing business, he decided to go a step further by purchasing Benue Cement from the Nigerian government, according to The Richest.
He would later go on to commission the Obajana Cement Plant which is the first Dangote plant. Located in Kogi State in the north-central region of the country, this plant is the largest of Dangote cement factories with 16.25Mta capacity running across five lines.
This plant is currently the largest cement facility in sub-Saharan Africa. Today, the Dangote empire is the largest in Africa.
Dangote Group’s publicly traded Businesses, Dangote Cement, Dangote Sugar, and NASCON Allied Industries make up a great percentage of the Nigerian Stock Exchange.
On the 22nd day of March 2022, He invited the president of Nigeria to commission Dangote Fertilizer Plant, Africa’s largest Granulated Urea Fertilizer complex.
This plant takes up about 500 hectares of land in the Lekki Free Trade Zone of Lagos, the commercial hub of the country. The construction of this plant cost Dangote $2.5 billion.
Dangote Cement has the capacity to produce 48.6 million metric tons annually and has operations in 10 countries across Africa.
Dangote, much like being synonymous with wealth creation is also very synonymous with job creations. Business Insider Africa reports his business is one of the highest employers on the entire continent. But in Q4 of 2022, this industry promised to kick job creation up a notch.
In December he promised to create 300,000 jobs for Nigerians. He also promised scholarships to 460 students.
Dangote Industries pledged to increase the human capacity at the Dangote Refinery Project site from 40,000 to 57,000 personnel in the coming months. And also hinted at increasing his operational footprint in Africa.
After many years in development, Dangote’s fertilizer plant in Nigeria began operations in March 2022. Dangote Refinery has also been under construction since 2016 and is expected to be one of the world’s largest oil refineries once complete.
Aliko Dangote has also expressed his commitment to solving some of the economic challenges faced by the African continent and its people.
Dangote, added that to realize this goal, the organization had committed over $20 billion on investments in several key sectors of the African economy.
He explained that the investments were to turn around Africa’s economic fortunes in the quest for sustained economic growth through free trade and economic integration.
“We have investments of over $20 billion across key industries, including energy, agriculture, and infrastructure. Our recently commissioned 3m metric tons fertiliser plant, expansions in cement production, and our soon-to-be commissioned 650,000 barrels per day world’s largest single-train refinery, are all set to empower farmers, foster backward integration, create thousands of jobs, eliminate our dependence on imported products, and improve our nation’s foreign exchange earnings significantly,” he said.
2022 for Dangote was not without its challenges. Business Insider Africa reports there were months that the company performed worse than projected, however, the final lap of the year saw Dangote’s fortune steered towards the right direction.
In Q4 of 2022, Dangote’s revenue grew by 6.2%, despite a $611 million loss in the first ten months of the year. Dangote Cement also recorded an increase in revenue of ?1,177.3B, up 15.2% in 2022, when compared to 2021. These numbers show a steady growth in his ventures and with plans to produce oil, Dangote’s business projections are nothing short of positive.
Today, Aliko Dangote has an estimated net worth of $18.6 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
He remains the richest man in Africa for the eleventh year in a row, the richest Black man in the world, and the 65th richest individual in the world.