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Richest Black People In The World



While black people have undoubtedly faced many hardships in history, we’re finally in the age where the number of black millionaires and billionaires is starting to multiply exponentially year over year. And they come from all parts of the world, as businessmen and women, athletes, entertainers, and even children of royalty are starting to amass wealth more quickly.
This is certainly due to increases in opportunities, including fair treatment in the professional space, more educational opportunities, and rising stake in nearly every crucial business and technology sector right now, including some of the world’s most popular companies. Here is your list of the most wealthy and successful black figures from a net worth standpoint.

Serena Williams – $200 Million

There’s not enough you can say about Serena Williams, who’s now celebrating retirement, but not after solidifying herself as one of the greatest tennis players of all time. She was a 5-time world No. 1, and held the top rank for 319 total weeks throughout her career. Williams also has 23 Grand Slams to her name, and 14 major titles she shares with her sister Venus. All that and more is why she’s one of the highest paid athletes ever, and her talent and endorsements back it up.

Denzel Washington – $250 Million

Denzel Washington got his start on Broadway, and with his natural talent, ability to diversify roles, and charismatic personality, he’s easily considered one of the most successful actors of the ‘90s and early 21st century. He’s won two Academy Awards, a Tony, three Golden Globes, in addition to the presidential medal of freedom. His acting prowess and undeniable screen talent has made him a mainstay in cinema for the past 30 years, and he nowhere near done.

Will Smith – $350 Million

Despite his recent setback at the Oscars, Will Smith has been another one of the most successful African American actors since he broke out in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Since then, he’s starred in many Hollywood blockbusters, netting nearly $10 billion in revenue globally. His reach is wide too, as he also has 4 Grammys for his music, in addition to his single Academy Award. But his work across numerous industries has seen his value increase significantly in a short period of time.

Kanye West – $1.5 Billion

Kanye West is no stranger to the spotlight, and whether you’re talking about his own music, albums he’s produced, or his incredibly whimsical fashion brand Yeezy in partnership with Adidas, you know why his namesake has skyrocketed, albeit a bumpy flight. But his innovation haven’t ceased yet, as he continues to produce music and fashion at an accelerated rate, regardless of if his name is attached to it or not.

Shaquille O’Neal – $400 Million

Shaq seems like he’s literally everywhere. From NBA coverage on TNT, to numerous commercial spots for dozens of companies over the years, not to mention his blossoming DJ career. He’s one of sports most beloved athletes, with an outstanding career as a big man and an even more generous career in retirement, where he’s served as everything from an honorary police officer to giving back via charities and encouraging young people to strive for excellence. He’s truly got a heart of gold, and deserves recognition for what he’s done with his wealth.

Samuel L. Jackson – $250 Million

Samuel L. Jackson’s $27 billion gross in movies is the second most all time only behind Stan Lee, and appearances in Goodfellas, Jurassic Park, Pulp Fiction, and others solidify that. He’s been in more than 150 movies, and has expanded to commercials and animated voice roles as well. He’s won dozens of awards, and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts actually gave him a honorary lifetime achievement award for his cultural influence and impact on audiences everywhere, which was presented to him by none other than Denzel Washington.

Beyoncé – $400 Million

It’s hard to say there’s been a bigger female music star in the 21st century than Beyoncé. From her start in Destiny’s Child, to her exploding solo career and marriage to rapper Jay-Z, her profile has only continued to skyrocket. She’s sold over 200 million albums worldwide, and is one of the best-selling recording artists of all time, finishing as the RIAA’s top artist overall, and top female artist of the ‘00s. She has 7 No. 1 albums, and 28 Grammys to her name, in addition to dozens of others. She’s also the highest earning female musician of all time, in addition to being Time’s 100 women who defined the last century.

Morgan Freeman – $250 Million

Morgan Freeman’s talent is so diverse, many people may have in fact learned of him through different mediums. Whether it was Shawshank Redemption, his work with Clint Eastwood, or his role as Lucius Fox in The Dark Knight, Freeman has been around the block and is considered an icon. His voice is also one of a kind, and he certainly utilized that ability to its fullest, becoming a mainstay in narration. His genre diversity has always kept him relevant and made him one of the most respected acting talents of his generation.

LeBron James – $1.2 Billion

It feels like LeBron James’ career has lasted forever, and that’s because it’s been 18 years – every one in which he’s been selected as an NBA All-Star and to the All-NBA team. If that’s not impressive enough, he’s competed in 10 Finals in that span, winning 4 of them with 3 different teams. He’s also the second-leading points scorer all-time, in addition to holding the playoff scoring record. He’s seventh all-time in assists, and has 4 MVPs in the regular season and Finals alike. Fair enough to say the conversation of “Greatest of All-Time” is warranted.

Tiger Woods – $1 Billion

Tiger Woods has experienced a roller coaster career, from health to personal issues plaguing a once-flourishing golfing career, to a remarkable comeback and subsequent auto accident. However, his influence on golf is forever, from his cultural impact on minorities, to a genuine story of resilience. He holds many records, including being tied for first in all-time PGA Tour wins, and is second in total major championships. From 1999 to 2010, he was unstoppable, holding the No. 1 ranking for record amounts of time. He was also Player of the Year 11 times. Safe to say, his influence and other business ventures and partnerships make him a legend.

Tyler Perry – $1 Billion

Tyler Perry is known for his writing, acting and producing – mainly in his famous Madea films – but most people don’t realize that his stories often began as live-action plays. In fact, even those Madea films originated as stage plays at first, but it was breakthrough on television through the likes of Tyler Perry’s House of Payne and The Haves and Have Nots that gained him diverse, cross-platform viewership and made him a household name. He’s considered one of the most respected black producers, earning multiple lifetime achievements along the way.

David Robinson – $200 Million

David Robinson is quite the swiss army knife. He played at the highest level in college and professional basketball, spent time serving in the Navy in the Civil Engineering Corps, and now invests via his Admiral Capital Group, which is a private equity firm with multiple hospitality ventures. You could say the two-time champion and 10-time All-Star is smart, but that’d be underselling it. Despite his momentous basketball career, his business savvy mindset and commitment to community development is incredibly admirable.

Sean Combs (P.Diddy) –$885 Million

Sean Combs may go by many names, but all of his money is going to the same bank accounts. The rapper, producer, actor, and entrepreneur has always been money-driven, and he’s done himself well by expanding his influence across multiple industries. Besides owning his own Bad Boy Records, Combs has three Grammys, and more importantly has become a mentor and cultivator of many other popular talents, adding to his value. Oh, and did we mention he has his own fashion brand, Sean Jean? Yeah, the man has got all the pop culture sectors checked.

Dr. Dre – $820 Million

Dr. Dre may in fact be the best producer in hip-hop history, and his catalogue speaks for itself. But it was the entrepreneurial side of him and his formation of Beats Electronics and partnership with Apple that really launched his business career to new heights. He ran Death Row Records, but now runs Aftermath, and his legendary work in N.W.A will always be revered. Dre has six Grammys to his name, and has also taken on some acting roles in movies like Training Day. His style and influence continues to be felt in the rap renre today.

Magic Johnson – $600 Million

Magic Johnson is one of the greatest basketball players and Lakers to ever play the game, and potentially the best point guard. He won 5 championships in 12 seasons before having to retire due to HIV. He also won three MVP awards and made the All-Star team each season he played in the league. The Hall of Famer is also a talented businessman and philanthropist, outspoken about HIV, and also part of the ownership team of the LA Lakers, Sparks, and Dodgers over the past decade. He also has tons of other business ventures that have undeniably increased his wealth over the years.

Alexander Karp – $2.1 Billion

Alexander Karp is one of the most silent and unknown figures on this list, and it’s partially the nature of his business, and particularly because he’s half African American, half Jewish. Karp is co-founder and CEO of software company Palantir Technologies, and which he actually began with a hefty inheritance he got from his grandfather. He graduated with a doctorate in philosophy, but has since invested in start-ups and stocks to amass wealth. He’s since worked alongside Peter Thiel and others, along with using technology to aid U.S. military efforts.

Mohammed Ibrahim – $1.1 Billion

This Sudanese-British telecommunications tycoon is a billionaire who founded the company Celtel, which was a provider in 14 African nations to 24 million customers when he sold it. He then began his own foundation, with the goal of creating a special index ranking African country’s governance. He’s since won leadership awards, and now has one he gives out himself that comes with a $5 million grant for African heads of state who empower their nations’ access to infrastructure and democracy. He’s also signed The Giving Pledge, meaning he plans to donate at least half his wealth to charity.

Folorunsho Alakija – $1.1 Billion

If you haven’t heard the name Folorunso Alakija, you must not be familiar with African business women. Alakija is considered the second most powerful woman on the continent, and manages an array of businesses. Through her managing director role at The Rose of Sharon Group, she oversees two printing groups that dominate the Nigerian industry, and also serves as a vice-chairman for Famfa Oil Limited. From banking to the Rose of Sharon Fashion, her biggest achievement in oil came as she granted Nigeria their own area to prospect, without losing money to the government.

Quincy Jones – $400 Million

Quincy Jones has meant a lot to many people in the recording industry, and with over 70 years under his belt, it’s not a mystery as to why. He has the record with 80 Grammy nominations, winning 28 along with an additional Legend Award for his contributions. Getting his start as a jazz musician, he was the first African American to win a Grammy for Best Original song on “The Eyes of Love” from the movie Banning, and has worked with some of the greatest names in music history, from Frank Sinatra to Michael Jackson on the ladder’s three most successful albums. He’s been elected to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, and is also the African American tied with most Oscar nominations.

Abdul Samad Rabiu – $6.7 Billion

The son of one of Nigeria’s most important industrialists, Abdul Samad Rabiu is the founder and chairman of BUA Group, a Nigerian manufacturing group focused on infrastructure and agriculture. For this, he’s become another one of Nigeria’s most successful billionaires, and his conglomerate is responsible for so much in his native country, he’s not only the second richest man in Nigeria, but the fifth richest in all of Africa. He’s also chairman of the Nigerian Bank of Industry.

Michael-Lee Chin – $1.6 Billion

Michael Lee-Chin’s wealth stems from his company Portland Holdings Inc. based in Ontario, Canada. The Jamaican-born businessman was born to Afro-Chinese parents in Portland Port Antonio, Jamaica, and after years of education in Canada and various jobs back in his home country, he became a financial advisor for Investors Group. From there, he rebranded what was known as AIC, set up the Berkshire group, and led investors through the dotcom crash in the positive. He’s Managed billions, therefore his worth is a reflection of the trust investors had in him.

Jay-Z – $1.4 Billion

Jay-Z is the modern rapper’s ideal role model, and a traditional rags to riches story with an exceptional upside. From his respected and awarded musical career, to his talent agency Roc Nation, and other business endeavors like 40/40 Club sports bar, running music service Tidal, and his cannabis company Monogram, Jay-Z is known as the first rap billionaire. His 140 million records sold and 24 Grammys attest to his popularity, and his marriage to Beyoncé certainly helps. His influence is also permanently marked in both the Songwriters and Rock & Roll Hall of Fames, where he was officially the first solo rapper inducted.

Michael Jordan – $1.6 Billion

Michael Jordan is forever the NBA’s most beloved player, because what he did during his years with the Chicago Bulls was nothing short of remarkable. The 6-time champ and 5-time MVP had more records than entire decades of players combined, and his post-playing career shoe endeavors alongside Nike with the Air Jordan model is still one of the most sought after shoes today. The Hall of Famer is widely considered the greatest that will ever play based on his era, and his many accolades back that up. He also currently owns the Charlotte Hornets, which initially made him the NBA’s first playing billionaire.

Patrice Motsepe – $2.9 Billion

Patrice Motsepe is the founder and executive chairman of African Rainbow Materials, which is a mining company that focuses on gold and platinum, among other precious metals. Not only is he South Africa’s richest man, but he’s also now the President of the Confederation of African Football as of 2021. He too is signed up for The Giving Pledge, and his wife is actually also quite successful both in physiology and fashion, proving this family’s ability to run a successful business and do so while advocating for entrepeneurialship around the continent is valiant.

Isabel Dos Santos – $2.3 Billion

Isabel Dos Santos is certainly a controversial figure on this list, since currently many of her assets are frozen and pending investigation, as she is being tried for corruption in Angola, Netherlands, and Portugal. She’s the eldest daughter of Angola’s former dictator Jose Eduardo Dos Santos, and she is thought to have gained most of her wealth through her family’s connections, and this corruption has her under fire, taking residence in the U.A.E and being banned from U.S., along with her immediate family, it’s likely this wealth is a thing of the past.

Strive Masiyiwa – $1.5 Billion

Another African involved in the tech industry, Strive Masiyiwa is the founder and executive chairman of Econet Global. He studied electrical engineering in Scotland and then returned to his home country of Zimbabwe after the Rhodesian Bush War, but when he was tested by the government over his telecom ventures, he moved Econet to South Africa, backed by many people who saw his vision as cellular technology boomed nearing 2000. The rest is history, and lately he’s sat on many boards, including Unilever, Netflix, the Rockefeller Foundation, and National Geographic. He’s also highly involved in philanthropy, supporting orphans with education and contributing over 250,000 scholarships over that past 20 years.

Oprah Winfrey – $2.7 Billion

Let’s face it, everyone knows Oprah. He talk show was one of the most watched television shows of the ‘90s and ‘00s, and her evolution to her OWN (literally) Network is a testament to her producing and writing talents. She’s also an acclaimed author, and notable philanthropist in many ways. She was the only black billionaire at one point, and not a single African American has given back more than Winfrey in U.S. history. She’s received the presidential medal of freedom, in addition to honorary doctorates at Duke and Harvard, and that’s certainly why she was the winner of 18 daytime Emmys. Her wide variety of achievements are worthy considering her hard work.

David Steward – $4.7 Billion

David Steward is a homegrown American businessman who graduated college, worked various sales and account executive positions, before moving into technology’s supply chain industry. With that experience he founded World Wide Technology, an integration system that grouped imaging, conversion and telecommunication services. He split off a division and named it TelcoBuy, a supply chain management company. To this day, it’s one of the largest private companies in the midwest.

Robert F. Smith – $6 Billion

This investor is one of the private equity industry’s most familiar faces, as most know Robert Smith as the founder, chairman, and CEO of Vista Equity Partners. He got his start in chemical engineering after graduating from Cornell, and then worked for Goodyear and Kraft. He then used his business masters to work for Goldman Sachs, before founding Vista Equity Partners in 2000. This venture capital firm continues to thrive, earning investors a substantial 30% consistently since its inception with a now 4th place ranking in enterprise software shareholding in the U.S.

Aliko Dangote – $19.6 Billion

Aliko Dangote’s credentials are top of his class. He’s the richest black person in the world (75th overall), and the richest person in Africa as a whole thanks to his industrial conglomerate, which is the largest in all of West Africa. His nearly $20 billion in net worth is exceptional, as the Dangote Group had humble beginnings starting from a basic trading group that eventually gained traction and partnered logistically with the Bank of Nigeria to cut import costs. Today it’s a full-fledged industrial production facilitator, employing over 11,000 Africans, providing sugar, flour and cement.

Mike Adenuga – $6.1 Billion

Mike Adenuga is a familiar face in Africa, as the multi-faceted businessman has his hands in telecom, banking, and oil, three of the most lucrative industries on the continent. His company Globocom is the second largest in Africa, and despite not receiving the ability to license GSMs until 2003, he began in oil exploration after receiving a drilling license in 1991. His company Conoil was the first commercial company of its kind, and his stake in banking is yet another sector he’s expounded upon through financial investments.

Mohammed Al-Amoudi – $8.4 Billion

Al-Amoudi’s background is diverse, as the Ethiopian-born businessman had a native mother and Yemeni father, before moving to Saudi Arabia. He began in construction and real estate, and his company built Saudi Arabia’s $30 million underground oil storage facility. He then moved into purchasing oil interests in Sweden and Morocco, where he would build his empire and become the second richest African. He’s still heavily involved in multiple Ethiopian business ventures, including Addis Tyre, and Addis Ababa Sheraton.

Rihanna – $1.7 Billion

Rihanna is another younger face on this list, as the barely 30-year-old has already expanded from her music career into acting, and more notably, business. Her brand Fenty Beauty cosmetics and fashion company has been sprawling since its inception, and the Barbados native has also been dubbed ambassador of education, tourism and investment of her home island. Her music is also some of the most famous ever, being the second best-selling artist of all-time, with 250 million records sold. She also has 9 Grammys and 13 American Music Awards among many others.

Tope Awotona – $1.4 Billion

Tope Awotona had a tragic childhood experience that saw his family move from Nigeria to Atlanta, where he would go on to study business management and computer science at the University of Georgia. After selling software for some time, he founded Calendly, the scheduling and communication platform for businesses. He founded it because he had trouble scheduling sales calls, and thanks to a small business loan, his dream has since earned millions of dollars in funding, which Awotona translated in a billion dollar company and industry leader.

Floyd Mayweather Jr. – $450 Million

You may know him as “Money Mayweather,” but there’s no denying that the championship boxer literally fought his way onto this list. Mayweather retired in 2017 undefeated, finishing with 15 major world championships in super featherweight to light middleweight classes. He’s consistently been praised and recognized as the best of his class pound-for-pound on nearly every list. He was also a promoter, earning the highest revenue from Pay-Per-View contests ever, surpassing some of the greats. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame, and is the 6th-highest earning athlete of all time at $1.2 billion accounting for inflation.

Barack Obama – 70 Million

President Barack Obama’s net worth is actually much higher than what he makes annually, considering his presidential salary as well as the one he gets now are miniscule compared to if he could sit on boards at companies. However, his influence and popularity have allowed him to do everything from narration, to film production, and running his Obama Foundation. He’s also a renowned author, and now podcast producer, allowing his love of stories to flourish across all mediums.

Halle Berry – $90 Million

Halle Berry’s acting career alongside her modeling career set her up to have multiple avenues of success. She was one of the highest paid female actresses of the ‘00s, especially after winning an Academy Award for her role in 2001’s Monster’s Ball. She’s also been an ambassador for Revlon since 1996, and that followed her runner up finish in the 1986 Miss USA pageant, and sixth place finish in the Miss World competition. Clearly, Berry was born with the looks to achieve stardom.

Janet Jackson – $180 Million

Janet Jackson is the most popular sister of the Jackson family, and second most famous only to her brother Michael. She’s widely known for her sensual style of music, coupled with outstanding choreography that changed the way live performances, especially on TV, are produced today. Her 100 million albums sold make her one of the most successful female recording artists ever, and probably the second best-selling dance club artist only behind Madonna. She’s heavily awarded, of course, and is one of the most influential performers ever.

Mohammad Salah – $90 Million

Mo Salah has burst onto the international soccer scene thanks to his success for English Premier League club Liverpool, and his leadership for his home national team of Egypt. Known for his speed and ball skills, he’s considered one of the best current footballers in the world, and one of the greatest Africans ever. Winning each of the Premier League, Champions League, FA Cup, and League Cup titles during his time at Liverpool since 2017, his play has been integral to the club’s success. He’s also won 3 Golden Boots, and Player and Playmaker of the season.

Lewis Hamilton – $285 Million

This F1 star has become a worldwide phenomenon, especially thanks to the boundaries he’s pushed in a historically white-dominated sport. Lewis Hamilton is arguably the most successful driver in series history, as his 7 titles are tied with Michael Schumacher all-time. He’s racked up the most wins, pole positions, and podium finishes ever, allowing his marketability and brand ambassadorship to multiply significantly. He’s still the only black driver to ever race in the series, making him a trailblazer worthy of even more than his value monetarily.

Bonang Metheba – $7 Million

Metheba is one of South Africa’s most beloved media personalities, showcasing her talents on television, radio and social media and quickly becoming one of the richest women in all of Africa. She became recognized for being featured on multiple magazine covers, and rose to fame initially on the SABC 1 music show LIVE. She also started her own reality show called B*Dazzled, and was the first international ambassador for Revlon beginning in 2013. She also hosts her own E! News special highlighting Africa.

Kevin Durant –

KD is one of the most recent players to be hailed as a greatest of all-time caliber talent, and his production in the NBA since his arrival backs it up. He has two championships and Finals MVPs to his name, and an additional two league MVP awards. He’s a 12-time All Star and also has major endorsement deals with Foot Locker and Nike, including a signature shoe, which is warranted for the 4-time scoring champ. He’s also contributing writing and acting to his resume, so who’s to say what else Durant will do when he hangs up the sneakers.

Sevetri Wilson – $2 Million

Sevetri Wilson is one of the youngest black entrepreneurs in the world right now, and she founded both a strategic communications agency called Solid Ground Innovations as well as a tech startup called Resilia. Together, she combined capital and networking to become a millionaire by just age 22, and her wealth is likely to keep increasing exponentially in the coming years. In fact, she already has a book published informing you how to do the same.

Stephen Curry – $160 Million

Stephen Curry is the pioneer for the new age of the NBA, combining insane levels of talent and technical ability into a playing style that’s changed the game as we knew it. Not only is his calculated approach to the game statistically breaking records, his efficiency, health regimen, and psychological approach has proven how tech can change the game today. His four championships and two MVP awards almost seem too low, and his scoring abilities are something that will be talked about for years to come, long after he’s no longer playing.

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson – $800 Million

The Rock is easily one of the most recognizable faces in entertainment, and when you really think about it, what has this guy not done yet? From bursting onto the scene as a wrestler after a failed football career, he moved effortlessly into acting, appearing in seemingly anything and everything, obviously making him one of the highest paid, and highest grossing actors to ever grace Hollywood. But what makes him marketable is his genuinely big and caring personality, as he’s been known to give back in numerous ways, and has various philanthropic initiatives.

Clarence Wooten – $350 Million

Clarene Wooten is an unlikely Silicon Valley success story, as he was dubbed a “unicorn” for his first tech business,, which he sold for $23 million in 1999. He was subsequently able to begin investing in other companies, such as organizations to help close the gap between funding for black entrepreneurs, as well as a real time marketplace to connect founders and investors in real time. His story was especially highlighted due to his inner city education to big tech pipeline.

Kevin Hart –

Kevin Hart is one of the most popular African American comedians since Dave Chapelle, and his hold on the entertainment industry is very clear, as his face appears in commercials, featured films, and streaming specials constantly. His acting roles have blasted his fame to new heights though, whereas his traditional stand-up days got him to this point. His comedic style has often been praised for his charismatic nature and wide variety of comedic subjects, providing a little something for everyone.

Femi Otedola – $1.85 Billion

Another Nigerian oil executive, Femi Otedola was the former chairman of Forte Oil PLC, which imported products for Nigeria and surrounding areas. He also founded Zenon Petroleum and Gas Ltd, in addition to owning other business ventures in finance, real estate and shipping. Most of his work currently involves energy generation in hopes of making Africa more self-sustainable.

Pharrell Williams – $250 Million

Pharrell Williams has come a long way since starting out with the Neptunes. The singer, rapper, producer, and writer went on to become a vocalist in N.E.R.D, produces some of the most popular albums of the 21st century, and has 13 Grammys to his name in addition to some other outstanding accolades like Producer of the Year and even an Academy Award for “Happy,” in addition to producing the film Hidden Figures.

Jeff Badu – $1.5 Million

Jeff Badu is on this list as an inspirational story, as this former gang member turned millionaire is giving back and hoping to educate his community that others can do the same with the right resources. The Ghanain native moved to Chicago, and after a life-changing trip back to his homeland at age 16, he came back and strived to do more. He now sits atop the board of multiple companies, including real estate investment, car rental, and tax prep, in addition to hosting a financial literacy radio show in Chicago each Monday.