In Africa, when we talk about the biggest fortunes, the first name that comes to mind is that of Aliko Dangote, the richest on the continent. But behind him, there are other wealthy people, each as powerful as the others, whom many ignore. Mike Adenuga is also in this category.
Second richest in Africa, the path of this billionaire was littered with challenges, failures and success. Taxi driver yesterday billionaire today. According to the recent Forbes ranking of March 2018, Mike Adenuga has a fortune of $ 5.8 billion.
From driver to billionaire
Mike Adenuga, now a great gentleman, was not in his early days. When he was studying in the US, he was doing his job as a taxi driver. That was his livelihood. His parents still had the means but the young student preferred to fight to pay for his studies. After his master’s degree in 1974, he took over the sale of soft drinks and fabrics, an activity that his mother did. But he could not shine in this area.
So he comes up with the idea of getting into the sale of vehicle spare parts. “I saw that there were so many cars and nobody took seriously the purchase of spare parts. So I said to myself, someone must solve this problem, “he recalls.
From real estate to oil and telecoms
Quickly, it diversifies its sources of income by launching itself in real estate. The Nigerian state entrusts it with housing construction contracts. At the same time, Mike Adenuga obtained an oil exploration license in 1990. He sets up Consolidated Oil, which to date has become Conoil. A drilling authorization obtained thereafter allowed him to fall on a significant oil field.
Likewise, he invested in the banking sector by creating his bank, Equatorial Trust Bank (ETB) which was a failure. It will ultimately be acquired by Sterling Bank.
We could not talk about Mike without mentioning his actions in telecoms. He is the founder of the Globalcom telecommunications network commonly called Glo. The operator claims 37 million subscribers.