TANZANIA: Tanzanian philanthropist, Mohammed Dewji, known across the globe as Mo Dewji, has continued to cling to The 20 Billionaires On The 2024 Forbes List of Africa’s Richest People, with his net wealth jumping to 1.8 billion US dollars from 1.5 billion US dollars.
In the 2024 ranking issued by the Forbes Magazine, the businessman has climbed to the 12 th position in Africa, jumping one place. In 2023 Forbes List of Africa’s Richest People, Mr Dewji occupied the 13 th slot with net wealth of 1.5 billion US dollars .
According to the Forbes List, the Tanzanian businessman is still the youngest billionaire for ten years in a row in East and Central Africa.
Mo’s Mohamed Enterprises Tanzania Limited (MeTL) Group is active in textile manufacturing, flour milling, beverages , transport and edible oils.
The Tanzanian philanthropist, who signed the Giving Pledge in 2016, promising to donate at least half his fortune to philanthropic causes, employs over 40,000 people in his diversified venture.
Mo Dewji, who grew up in Singida, and studied finance and international business and theology for his university degree at Georgetown University in the US, has been quoted several times as saying that growing up, he always wanted to become wealthy but as time went by he realised that money was not the most important thing.
“I learned that what is important is how much impact you make in society, the jobs that you create and the lives that you touch,” he was quoted by one of the newspapers after an interview about two years.
Forbes Magazine says the list of African billionaires involves those who reside in Africa or have their primary businesses in the continent. Net worth [of individual billionaires] is calculated using stock prices and currency exchange rates.
Mohammed Dewji is the CEO of METL, a Tanzanian conglomerate founded by his father in the 1970s.
Nigeria’s Alike Dangote, whose fortune rose by 400 million US dollars to 13.9 billion US dollars, claimed the ranking’s Munber One spot for the 13th year in a row, despite the political uncertainty following last February presidential election and a devaluation of the naira in 2023 that offset the rising share price of Dangote Cement.
South African luxury goods magnate Johann Rupert held onto the Number Two spot with10.1 billion US dollars, down from 10.7 billion US dollars in 2023 as shares of his Compagnie Financiere Richemont–maker of Cartier watches and Montblanc pens – slid.
Another South African Nicky Oppenheimer, who formerly ran diamond mining firm DeBeers before selling it to mining firm Anglo American a decade ago, ranks Number Three with 9.4 billion US dollars , up by 1 billion US dollars from 2023 . Thirteen of the billionaires added to their fortunes this year, while seven saw their net worth decline.
The fortunes of Africa’s wealthiest people have rebounded slightly in the past 12 months, reversing the decline in their fortunes from a year ago, though they are still off their all- time highs. The 20 billionaires on the 2024 Forbes list of Africa’s Richest are worth a combined 82.4 billion US dollars. That’s up by 900 million US dollars from last year’s 81.5 billion US dollars.