Aliko Dangote, Africa’s richest man and the 23rd wealthiest man in the world according to Forbes with an estimated net worth of over $23 billion, started investing in 1978 with a seed capital of only 500,000 naira ($2,800) given to him by his grandfather. He spoke to BBC News about how he made it big by investing in non-oil commodities in a country where oil is king.
“My first importation was sugar in 1980. In 1986 they abolished the import license… and I think that was the break for us because we demonstrated we were the leaders at that time. Instead of importing everything like we used to do we concentrated in few items mainly sugar rice and frozen fish and kept on expanding and expanding,” he said.
“Unfortunately where I come from in the North people believe you can only make money from oil. But I’ve actually proved that yes you can make money if you’re not in oil. Oil makes you lazy.”
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