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Aliko Dangote

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Aliko Dangote
Dangote in 2014
Born (1957-04-10) 10 April 1957 (age 67)
Kano, British Nigeria
EducationGovernment College, Birnin Kudu
Alma materAl-Azhar University
  • Businessman
  • industrialist
Years active1977–present
Zainab Dangote
(m. 1977, divorced)
Mariya Muhammad Rufai
Children4, including Halima

Aliko Dangote (Listen) GCON (born 10 April 1957) is a Nigerian businessman and industrialist. He is best known as the founder, chairman, and CEO of the Dangote Group, the largest industrial conglomerate in West Africa. The Bloomberg Billionaires Index estimated his net worth at $15.3 billion in May 2024, making him the richest person in Africa, the world's richest black person, and the world's 132nd richest person overall.[1][2][3]

Early life[edit]

Dangote was born on 10 April 1957 into a wealthy Hausa Muslim family in Kano, which was then part of British Nigeria.[4][5][6] His mother, Mariya Sanusi Dantata, was the daughter of businessman Sanusi Dantata.[7] His father, Mohammed Dangote, was a business associate of Dantata.[8] Through his mother, he is the great-grandson of Alhassan Dantata, the richest person in West Africa at the time of his death in 1955.[9] Dangote's brother, Sani (1959/60–2021), was also a businessman.[10][11] Dangote was educated at the Sheikh Ali Kumasi Madrasa, followed by Capital High School in Kano.[12] In 1978, he graduated from the Government College, Birnin Kudu.[13] He received a bachelor's degree in business studies and administration from Al-Azhar University in Cairo.[14][12]

Business career[edit]

Dangote in 2011

The Dangote Group was established as a small trading firm in 1977, the same year Dangote relocated to Lagos to expand the company.[5] Dangote received a 500,000 loan from his uncle to begin trading in commodities, including bagged cement as well as agricultural goods like rice and sugar.[15] In the 1990s, he approached the Central Bank of Nigeria with the idea that it would be less expensive for the bank to allow his transport company to manage their fleet of staff buses, a proposal that was also approved.

Today, the Dangote Group is one of the largest conglomerates in Africa, with international operations in Benin, Ghana, Zambia, and Togo. The Dangote Group has moved from being a trading company to being the largest industrial group in Nigeria, encompassing divisions like Dangote Sugar Refinery, Dangote Cement, and Dangote Flour.[16] Dangote Group dominates the sugar market in Nigeria, and its refinery business is the main supplier (70 percent of the market) to the country's soft drink companies, breweries, and confectioners. The company employs more than 11,000 people in West Africa.

In July 2012, Dangote approached the Nigerian Ports Authority to lease an abandoned piece of land at the Apapa Port, which was approved.[17] He later built facilities for his sugar company there. It is the largest refinery in Africa and the third largest in the world, producing 800,000 metric tons of sugar annually. The Dangote Group owns salt factories and flour mills and is a major importer of rice, fish, pasta, cement, and fertilizer. The company exports cotton, cashew nuts, cocoa, sesame seeds, and ginger to several countries. Additionally, it has major investments in real estate, banking, transport, textiles, oil, and gas.

In February 2022, Dangote announced the completion of the Peugeot assembling facility in Nigeria following his partnership with Stellantis Group, the parent company of Peugeot, and the Kano and Kaduna state governments. The new automobile company, Dangote Peugeot Automobiles Nigeria Limited (DPAN) factory, which is based in Kaduna, commenced operations with the roll-out of the Peugeot 301, 508, 3008, 5008, and Landtrek.[18]

On 22 May 2023 in Lekki, Nigeria, Dangote commissioned the Dangote Refinery. The plant plans to export surplus petrol, turning Africa's biggest oil producer into an export hub for petroleum products. It also plans to export diesel, according to Dangote, who funded the refinery's construction. The refinery is situated on a 6,180-acre (2,500 hectares) site at the Lekki Free Trade Zone, Lekki, Lagos State. It is supplied with crude oil by the largest sub-sea pipeline infrastructure in the world at 1,100 kilometres (680 mi) long.


Dangote became Nigeria's first billionaire in 2007.[19] Dangote reportedly added $9.2 billion to his personal wealth in 2013, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, making him the 30th-richest person in the world at the time, and the richest person in Africa.[20] In 2015, the HSBC leaks revealed that Dangote was a HSBC client and that he had assets in a tax haven in the British Virgin Islands.[21][22]

As of June 2022, Dangote is the wealthiest person in Africa, with an estimated net worth of US$20 billion.[23][2]

Political activity[edit]

Dangote had a prominent role in the financing of President Olusegun Obasanjo's re-election bid in 2003, to which he gave over N200 million (US$2 million). He contributed N50 million (US$500 thousand) to the National Mosque under the aegis of "Friends of Obasanjo and Atiku". Dangote also contributed N200 million to the Presidential Library. These highly controversial gifts to members of the ruling PDP party have generated significant concerns despite highly publicized anti-corruption drives during Obasanjo's second term.[24]

In 2011, Dangote was appointed by President Goodluck Jonathan to serve as a member of his economic management team.[25] In 2017, rumors circulated that Dangote was considering a run for President of Nigeria in the 2019 election. Dangote declined to run and asserted that he does not intend to run for elected office.[26][27] Instead, Dangote went on to serve on a special advisory committee for Muhammadu Buhari's reelection campaign.[28]

Other activities[edit]


Dangote has worked alongside the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation on public health issues.[29] In August 2014, he donated 150 million ($750,000) to assist the Nigerian government's efforts to stop the spread of Ebola.[30][31] In May 2016, he pledged $10 million to support Nigerians affected by the Boko Haram insurgency.[32] In March 2020, he donated ₦200 million ($500,000) towards the fight against the spread of COVID-19 in Nigeria.[33]


In 2019, Dangote and Femi Otedola promised to give the Nigerian national football team $75,000 for every goal scored in the Africans Cup of Nations (AFCON).[34] Dangote is an avid fan of English football team Arsenal FC and has shown interest in buying the club.[35] In 2020, he made a donation to Nigeria's sport ministry to help renovate the country's national sports stadium in Abuja.[36]

Personal life[edit]

Dangote lives in Lagos.[37] He owns two private jets and reportedly works 12 hours every day from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. and runs 10 miles on a treadmill almost every day.[19]

Dangote married Zainab Dangote in 1977, but they divorced at an unknown date. He was later married to Mariya Muhammad Rufai until their divorce, though the dates of the wedding and divorce are unknown. He has three daughters named Halima, Mariya, and Fatimah, and an adopted son named Abdulrahman.[38] Halima followed him into the business world and is currently his company's executive director of commercial operations.[39]

Awards and memberships[edit]

Awards and recognition[edit]


Dangote sits on the board of the Corporate Council on Africa and is a member of the steering committee of the United Nations Secretary-General's Global Education First Initiative,[62][63] the Clinton Global Initiative and the International Business Council of the World Economic Forum. He was named co-chair of the US-Africa Business Center, in September 2016, by the US Chamber of Commerce.[64][65][66][67] In April 2017, he joined the board of directors of the Clinton Health Access Initiative.[68] He is also on the board of One Campaign.[69][70][71] Dangote was appointed the founding Chairman of the Nigeria End Malaria Council by President Buhari in August 2022.[72] He is also a member of the Global End Malaria Council, along with other leaders including Bill Gates, Ray Chambers, and former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.[73]

See also[edit]


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  2. ^ a b "Dangote visits revamped Moshood Abiola Stadium -". thenationonlineng.net. Retrieved 26 February 2022.
  3. ^ "Bloomberg Billionaires Index". Bloomberg.com. Retrieved 10 June 2022.
  4. ^ Ilan Bijaoui (2017). Multinational Interest & Development in Africa: Establishing a People's Economy. Springer. p. 55. ISBN 978-3-319-48914-8.
  5. ^ a b Gabriel Edigheji (29 June 2012). The Entrepreneur Magazine. Lulu.com. ISBN 978-1-105-90932-0.[self-published source]
  6. ^ Nweke, Ifeanyi. "What you should know about Dangote". Retrieved 14 July 2015.
  7. ^ admin (10 April 2017). "Aliko Dangote: The African Icon at 60!". This Day Live. Retrieved 6 March 2022.
  8. ^ "What you should know about Dangote - The Nation Newspaper". 23 November 2012. Retrieved 12 May 2022.
  9. ^ Lawal, Dahiru (29 May 2023). "Fact-Check: Did Dangote Come to Lagos with Nothing 45 years ago?". PRNigeria News. Retrieved 17 February 2024.
  10. ^ "Sani Dangote dies: Aliko Dangote brother Sani, Vice President of Dangote Group don die". BBC News Pidgin (in Nigerian Pidgin). 15 November 2021. Archived from the original on 15 November 2021.
  11. ^ "Sani Dangote burial fotos". BBC News Pidgin. Retrieved 6 March 2022.
  12. ^ a b "Aliko Dangote: Things You Never Knew About Him, His Wives and Children – Naija News". naijanews.com. 17 March 2017. Archived from the original on 8 October 2017. Retrieved 8 October 2017.
  13. ^ IV, Editorial (4 January 2018). "Birnin Kudu College hails Dangote on projects". Blueprint. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
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  15. ^ Umoh, Ruth (5 December 2018). "Billionaire Aliko Dangote is the world's richest black person—here's how he made his wealth". CNBC. Retrieved 12 May 2022.
  16. ^ "Somalia orders top U.N. official to leave". Reuters. 2 January 2019. Archived from the original on 3 January 2019. Retrieved 2 January 2019.
  17. ^ "Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc (DSR)", Institute of Developing Economies-Japan External Trade Organization. Accessed 26 November 2015.
  18. ^ "Africa's Richest Man, Dangote Ventures Into Automobiles". Investors King. 4 February 2022. Retrieved 7 February 2022.
  19. ^ a b "Aliko Dangote, Nigeria's first billionaire cements his fortune - CNN.com". edition.cnn.com. Retrieved 12 May 2022.
  20. ^ "Aliko Dangote Racks in $9.2 bn in 2013". BellaNaija. 3 January 2014.
  21. ^ "Exposed: The Africans named in the HSBC Swiss Leaks". The Mail & Guardian. 13 February 2015. Retrieved 27 February 2022.
  22. ^ "INVESTIGATION: David Mark's wife, Dangote, Adenuga, others named in #SwissLeaks as operators of secret foreign accounts | Premium Times Nigeria". 19 February 2015. Retrieved 27 February 2022.
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  25. ^ "Nigeria's Jonathan adds Dangote to economic team". Reuters. 19 August 2011. Retrieved 11 May 2022.
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  27. ^ Akinola, Wale (18 August 2017). "I am not ready to give up business for politics - Dangote rules out 2019 presidential bid". Legit.ng - Nigeria news. Retrieved 11 May 2022.
  28. ^ "2019: Presidency clarifies Dangote's role in Buhari's campaign as Nigerians, PDP react | Premium Times Nigeria". 29 December 2018. Retrieved 11 May 2022.
  29. ^ Falade, Faderera (26 September 2019). "What I Admire Most About Dangote – Bill Gates". Nigeria News. Retrieved 11 May 2022.
  30. ^ "Nigeria reports one more Ebola case, 11 in total". Reuters. Archived from the original on 16 August 2014. Retrieved 20 June 2015.
  31. ^ "Africa's richest man gives N150m to fight Ebola – Corporate News". businessdailyafrica.com. Archived from the original on 23 July 2015. Retrieved 20 June 2015.
  32. ^ "Boko Haram crisis: Nigerian tycoon Dangote donates $10m in aid". BBC News. 10 May 2016. Retrieved 11 May 2022.
  33. ^ "Dangote donate N200m to fight Coronavirus in Nigeria". CNBC Africa. 3 March 2020. Retrieved 28 March 2020.
  34. ^ "AFCON: Dangote, Otedola To Splash $75,000 Per Goal On Super Eagles". Channels Television. Retrieved 26 December 2021.
  35. ^ Jones, Rich (27 January 2022). "Africa's richest man has explained when he'll buy Arsenal and been told price". The Mirror. Retrieved 9 July 2024.
  36. ^ "Dangote's $1m for renovation of MKO Abiola stadium excites Adelabu – Nigeria and World News". The Guardian Nigeria News – Nigeria and World News. 28 August 2020. Retrieved 19 October 2020.
  37. ^ "The World's Billionaires: Aliko Dangote". Forbes.com. Retrieved 9 March 2018.
  38. ^ David, Pilling (25 November 2019). "Aliko Dangote, Africa's richest man, on his 'crazy' $12bn project". Nigerian Infopedia. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  39. ^ Italoye, Ibukun (25 November 2019). "Aliko Dangote's Children: Names of His Sons & Daughters". Nigerian Infopedia. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  40. ^ "BN Bytes: Genevieve Nnaji, Stephanie Okereke, Amaka Igwe, Aliko Dangote & Jim Ovia receive Honours – Photos from the Ceremony". BellaNaija. 15 November 2011. Retrieved 20 June 2015.
  41. ^ Reed, Megan (8 December 2014). "Nigerian Businessman Aliko Dangote Named Forbes Africa Person of the Year 2014". atlantablackstar.com. Retrieved 28 December 2014.
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  46. ^ Africa, Forbes (1 February 2017). "Africa's Billionaires". Forbes Africa. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
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  48. ^ staff, CNBC com (29 April 2014). "CNBC 25: Aliko Dangote". www.cnbc.com. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  49. ^ CNBC (29 April 2014). "The List: CNBC First 25". www.cnbc.com. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  50. ^ "The 100 Most Influential People in the World". Time. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  51. ^ "The World's 100 Most Influential People". Time. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
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  53. ^ "Power, Money, and Ideas: Bloomberg Markets 50 Most Influential People". Bloomberg Markets. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  54. ^ admin (6 December 2017). "Dangote Emerges Only African on Bloomberg's List of 50 Most Influential People". THISDAYLIVE. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  55. ^ "Dangote honored as the guardian man of the year 2015". guardian.ng. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  56. ^ "Businessman & Philanthropist Aliko Dangote to Accept 2016 AAI African Business Leader Award". The Africa-America Institute. 17 August 2016. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  57. ^ "American institute names Dangote African Business Leader of the Year". TheCable. 26 September 2016. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  58. ^ "Nigerians dominate New Africa's 100 Most Influential Africans of 2015". Vanguard News. 24 November 2015. Retrieved 6 January 2021.
  59. ^ fadamana (7 December 2017). "100 Most Influential Africans: Ten Kenyans Including CJ David Maraga Listed". Answers Africa. Retrieved 5 January 2021.
  60. ^ "New African releases its list of 100 Most influential Africans". Ladybrille Magazine. 30 November 2018. Retrieved 5 January 2021.
  61. ^ Africa, Ventures (9 October 2019). "Top 10 Nigerians in Africa Report's 100 most influential Africans". Ventures Africa. Retrieved 5 January 2021.
  62. ^ "UN chief hails Dangote's interventions". Daily Trust. 25 August 2015. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  63. ^ "United Nations Girls' Education Initiative – Global Section – Global Business Leaders Launch Girls' Education Task Force". UNGEI. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  64. ^ "U.S. Chamber Names Aliko Dangote Co-Chair of U.S.-Africa Business Center". U.S. Chamber of Commerce. 20 September 2016. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  65. ^ "US Chamber names Dangote Co-Chair of US-Africa Business Centre". Vanguard News. 20 September 2016. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  66. ^ "Africa's richest man to co-chair US-Africa business center by U.S. Chamber of Commerce". guardian.ng. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  67. ^ "U.S. Chamber of Commerce Appoints Benedict Peters To Advisory Board of The U.S.-Africa Business Center". CNBC Africa. 24 September 2019. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  68. ^ "Aliko Dangote GCON – Omnia Strategy LLP". omniastrategy.com. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  69. ^ "Aliko Dangote". ONE. 1 September 2016. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  70. ^ "African Business leader and Philanthropist, Aliko Dangote, joins Board of The ONE Campaign". ONE. 1 September 2016. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  71. ^ "Dangote and Bono launch poverty tackling partnership". ONE. 29 August 2016. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  72. ^ Release, Press (16 August 2022). "Buhari inaugurates Dangote-led Nigeria End Malaria Council". Premium Times Nigeria. Retrieved 16 August 2022.
  73. ^ "End Malaria Council". endmalariacouncil.org. Retrieved 16 August 2022.

Further reading[edit]

  • Barau, A. S. (2007), The Great Attractions of Kano. Research and Documentation Directorate, Government House, Kano
  • Fayemiwo, M. A., & M. M. Neal (2013), Aliko Mohammad Dangote The Biography of the Richest Black Person in the World, Strategic Book Publishing ISBN 9781618978851
  • Ekekwe, N. (2020), The Dangote System: Techniques for Building Conglomerates, Tekedia Institute

External links[edit]