fbpx
Edit Content

Famous Entrepreneurs – List Of Successful Entrepreneurs In Nigeria

Famous entrepreneurs are entrepreneurs who are known in their industry. They are either the pioneers in what they do or are doing something different from other people in the same industry. These famous entrepreneurs have carved their names on the sand of time.

See Also: Resources that will help you start, market and grow a sustainable business.

In a continent with over 3 million entrepreneurs, we understand that you have to be creative and innovative to stand out. For any entrepreneur to be recognised and included in our list of famous entrepreneurs, something must stand them out and they also must be popular and globally recognised.

Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don't Have An Idea
Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don’t Have An Idea

See Also: Young Entrepreneurs in Nigeria Across Different Industries.

Entrepreneurs.ng have researched and have come up with our list of famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. To have made the list, these famous entrepreneurs are doing something different in a creative and innovative way.

See Also: 100 Profitable business ideas to start now for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors.

List Of Famous Entrepreneurs In Nigeria

Aliko Dangote

Background

Aliko Dangote is Africa’s richest man and is the number one on our list of famous entrepreneurs. He hails from Kano and was born into a wealthy family on the 10th of April, 1957. He is the great-grandson of Alhaji Alhassan Dantata, the richest African at the time of his death in 1955.

Dangote is a business tycoon, philanthropist, and investor. He owns the Dangote Group established in 1981, which is now a multinational industrial conglomerate. 

The conglomerate is one of the largest in Africa employing over 30,000 people and it generates revenue worth billions of dollars annually.

Aliko Dangote was educated at the Sheikh Ali Kumasi Madrasa and Capital High School, Kano where he obtained his secondary school certificates. He has a bachelor degree in business studies and administration from Al-Azhar University, Cairo.

See Also: Business ideas you can start with 100K and make millions.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Aliko Dangote had an interest in business as a child. For instance, he sold cartons of sweets in order to make money even as a child.

As of March 2019, Dangote had an estimated net worth of $10.6 billion. Currently, He is ranked by Forbes magazine as the 100th richest person in the world and the richest in Africa. His business covers areas like fast moving consumer goods (FMCG), cement, oil and gas.

Amazingly, he surpassed the Saudi-Ethiopian billionaire, Mohammed Hussein Al Amoudi, in 2013 with over $2.6 billion to become the world’s richest person of African descent.

See Also: Manufacturing business ideas you can start now and make millions.

Michael Adeniyi Agbolade Adenuga

Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days
Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days

Background

Mike Adenuga is one of the famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. He was born on 29th April 1953 at Ibadan, Oyo state Nigeria, into the family of Oloye Michael Agbolade Adenuga Snr, a school teacher, and Omoba Juliana Oyindamola Adenuga, a business woman of the royal Ijebu descent.

Adenuga received his post primary school education at Ibadan Grammar School. He then went to Comprehensive High School, Aiyetoro, for his Higher School Certificate (HSC). He graduated from Northwestern Oklahoma State University and Pace University, New York, with degrees in Business Administration. While in the US, he worked as a taxi driver to help fund his university education.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Mike Adenuga owns stakes in the Equitorial Trust Bank now Sterling bank plc and Conoil, an oil exploration firm (formerly Consolidated Oil Company). Conoil got a drilling license in 1990 and in 1991, his consolidated oil firm struck oil in the shallow waters of Southwestern Ondo State.

Also, he is ranked as the second richest person in Nigeria and Africa with his net worth estimated at $9.4 billion according to Forbes as of 2019. He is also the founder of Globacom, one of the largest telecommunications company in Africa with presence in Ghana and Benin.

See Also: Funding mistakes that entrepreneurs and startups should avoid.

Folorunsho Alakija

Background

Folorunsho Alakija, is a woman and half and she made our list of famous entrepreneurs. She was born on July 15, 1951 to the family of Chief L. A. Ogbara in Ikorodu, Lagos State.

At the tender age of 7, Folorunsho travelled to the UK for her primary education at Dinorben school for Girls in Hafodunos Hall, Llangernyw, Wales.

She returned to Nigeria to attend Muslim high school Sagamu, Ogun state, Nigeria and finally went back to the UK for her secretarial studies at Pitman’s Central College, London. The Philanthropist also studied fashion designs at the Central school of fashion and the American College, London.

She is the group managing director of the fashion label-The Rose of Sharon Group. Folorunsho Alakija is also the executive vice-chairman of Famfa Oil Limited, an oil exploration company in Nigeria with a stake in Agbami oilfields. 

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Alakija kick-started her career in 1974 as an executive secretary at Sijuade Enterprises, Lagos, Nigeria. After that, she joined First National Bank of Chicago which later became FinBank. Finbank was later acquired by First City Monument Bank.

After she left Finbank, she started a tailoring company, Supreme Stitches. Supreme Stitches was changed to Rose Of Sharon House Of Fashion which became a household name. Folorunsho served as the National President and lifelong trustee of the Fashion Designers Association of Nigeria (FADAN). While she served, she promoted Nigerian culture through fashion and style and left an indelible mark.

Ranked as one of the successful and famous entrepreneurs in Africa by Forbes, Folorunsho is also one of the richest black women in the world with a net worth of $2.1 billion. She temporarily unseated Oprah Winfrey as the richest woman of African descent in the world in 2014. 

As of 2016, she is listed as the second most powerful woman in Africa after Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and the 80th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes.

See Also: How to calculate and measure your Customer Lifetime Value

Linda Ifeoma Ikeji

Background

She is one of the famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. She is a blogger, writer, philanthropist. Linda was born on 19th September 1980, into a catholic family from Nkwerre, Imo state. She is popularly known for her blog.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Linda began writing at the age of 10. She studied English language at the University of Lagos and graduated in 2004. She started blogging in 2006 when the internet was not so popular and she had to visit cybercafé to write and post on her blog.

To support her family and fund herself through school, Linda did part-time jobs as a waitress, model and writer.

In 2014, she became one of the most searched people on Google in Nigeria. Her net worth is rising daily as the entertainment blogger keeps advancing in her profession. Sources report that her blog was worth $1.2 million back in 2012.

See Also: How the entrepreneur can create a Business Continuity Plan.

Jason Chukwumah Njoku

Background

Jason Chukwuma Njoku is a British born Nigerian entrepreneur. He is one of the famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. The film magnate and African start-up investor was born on December 11th, 1980 in Deptford, south-East London. He is the co-founder and CEO of iROKOtv, one of the early video-on-demand movie platforms for Nollywood movies.

He graduated with a 2:1 in Chemistry from The University of Manchester in 2004, and launched Brash Magazine, a student publication which ran for two years, before its closing down.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

After a number of unsuccessful ventures between 2005 and 2010, which included a blog network, a T-shirt business and a web design company, Jason moved back home into his mother’s house in Deptford. It was there that he came up with the idea of launching a Nollywood online distribution business at age 30. iROKOtv is Jason’s 11th attempt at establishing a business.

In 2010, he launched NollywoodLove, a YouTube channel with his former partner Bastian Gotter. The YouTube channel which was profitable within 2 months. Later that year, the business caught the attention of US-based venture capital firm, Tiger Global. Tiger Global was interested in expanding their reach in emerging markets. After a $3 million-dollar Series A investment from Tiger Global, the business launched a stand-alone video-on-demand platform, iROKOtv in 2011, drawing viewership from about 178 countries around the world.

Spark

In August 2013, Jason, together with his business partners Bastian Gotter and Mary Remmy Njoku,  launched a $2 million investment vehicle for Lagos-based internet startup called Spark. Spark invested in promising startups like Drinks.ng, Tolet.com.ng, and Hotels.ng. Hotels.ng has gone on to raise about $1.2 million in venture capital investment from EchoVC, Pan-Africa Fund, and Omidyar Network.

Jason was cited by Forbes Africa as one of the ‘Ten Young African Millionaires to Watch’ in 2012. Jason is an investor and entrepreneur with a vision and passion for solving societal problems. He is also the Co-founder of Rok Studios, a television and movie production house in Lagos, Ghana, and the UK.

See Also: How to start a successful film production company.

Taiwo Olayinka Afolabi

Background

Taiwo Olayinka Afolabi, is a successful Nigerian magnate, a lawyer and one of the famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. He was born on April 29, 1962 in Ondo state to the family of Chief & Chief (Mrs.) Samson Afolabi. A native of Idokunusi Ijebu in the Ijebu East Local Government Area of Ogun State, Nigeria.

He is the founder and current CEO of SIFAX Group, a multinational conglomerate that deals in haulages, logistics, hospitality, oil and gas with presence in many African countries, Europe and US.

Taiwo completed his primary and secondary school education at Ansar-Ud Deen Primary School, Ondo State and Baptist Grammar School, Ibadan respectively. His quest for academic excellence led him to the University of Lagos where he graduated with a bachelors and master degrees in Law. He was called to the Nigerian bar by the Body of Benchers in 2009.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

In 1981, he started his professional career with Nigerian Express Agencies Limited, where he distinguished himself through his hard work. He later became the head of operations in same firm till 1988 when he left to establish SIFAX Group.

SIFAX Group is Nigeria’s leading conglomerates with interests and investments in oil and gas, haulage, hospitality, logistics, maritime and aviation. The company provides employment for thousands of Nigerians both directly and indirectly.

The company, which started as a small freight forwarding agency in Lagos, now have operation and presence in the US, UK, Spain, Morocco, Holland, Belgium, Ghana, South Africa, etc.

Afolabi is an experienced maritime consultant and a Fellow of many professional bodies including Nigerian Institute of Financial Management (NIFM), Institute of Freight Forwarders of Nigeria (IFFN) and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators of Nigeria. You can see why he made the list of famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria.

See Also: How to start an affiliate marketing business.

Sunny Obazu-Ojeagbase

Background

Sunny Obazu-Ojeagbase is one of the famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. He is a business coach, author and pastor. He was born on the 31st December 1950 in Osogbo, Osun state, to Edo parents, Mr. and Mrs. Johnson Obazu-Ojeagbase.

He is the founder of Complete Communications Limited, a company that houses Complete Sports newspaper. He also Co-founded Success Attitude Development Center (SADC) with his wife.

The Business Coach completed his basic education at St. James’ Primary School, Osogbo in 1962. He was recruited into the Nigerian Army after working as a printer trainee. Sunny Obazu holds a Diploma in Mass Communication from the University of Lagos.

Journey into Entrepreneurship

Sunny worked as a freelance sports reporter for numerous media houses including Herald Newspaper (owned by the Kwara state government), Daily Times, Concord Group of Newspapers and The Guardian. In 1983, he started publishing a weekly sports newspaper called Sports Souvenir after he resigned from The Guardian as a Reporter.

In 1995, he published Complete Sports, a daily sports newspaper and Success Digest Magazine, a business establishment guide. Success Digest has gone on to become one of the most widely read magazine in Nigeria.

Sunny has written several books, some of his published works include; How to Make It in Nigeria, Building Your Wealth from Ground Floor Up, How to Bullet Proof Yourself from Poverty, Ideas – The Starting Point of All True Riches, etc.

Sunny is a veteran in sports journalism and also a seasoned entrepreneur with vast knowledge in sports and business.

In 2015, Dr. Sunny Obazu-Ojeagbase became the Patron of the Edo Football Association at the maiden Edo FA awards night.

Stella Chinyelu Okoli

Background

Stella Chinyelu Okoli made the list of our famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. The pharmacist was born in 1944, in Kano state, Nigeria into the family of Chief Felix Ebelechukwu and Princess Margaret Modebelu of Nnewi descents in Anambra state.

She is the founder and current CEO of Emzor Pharmaceutical, an indigenous pharmaceutical manufacturing company founded over 30 years ago in Lagos. She is also the founder of the Chike Okoli Foundation, which was established in 2006 after the death of her son, to create awareness on cardiovascular diseases and other sicknesses.

Stella started her formal education in 1954 at All Saint Primary School, Onitsha. She then went to Ogidi Girls Secondary School, where she obtained her senior secondary school certificate in 1964. Stella then proceeded obtain a degree in pharmacy from the University of Bradford in 1969, and a master of science certificate in Biopharmaceutical from the University of London, Chelsea College in 1971.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Stella’s drive for entrepreneurship led her into the business of drugs importation in 1981. Her business started as Emzor Chemists Limited, a small pharmacy retail shop in Shomolu, Lagos State. The company has since grown to become one of the foremost pharmaceutical companies in Nigeria with over 70 products.

Stella Okoli is a member of the Economic Summit of Nigeria and the Health Matters Advisory Board of Nigeria. She also serves as the current Vice President of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria and the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture.

Stella Okoli is a recipient of the ECOWAS International Gold Award and in 2012, was honoured at the 17th ThisDay Annual Awards.

Abdulsamad Isyaku Rabiu

Background

Abdulsamad Isyaku Rabiu is an industrialist, a philanthropist and worthy to be on the list of famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. He was born on the 4th of August, 1960, in Kano state, Nigeria into the family of late Khalifah Isyaku Rabiu.

Abdulsamad is the founder and Chairman of BUA International Limited, a Nigerian conglomerate engaged in manufacturing, infrastructure and agriculture. He is also the chairman of Nigerian Bank of Industry (BOI).

He received his primary and secondary education in Kano state, Nigeria. Abdul then before proceeded to the United States, where he obtained a degree in Economics from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Abdulsamad learnt the rudiments of business from his father, and industrialist and moved to Lagos to kickstart his entrepreneurial journey.

He founded the BUA International Limited in 1988 to trade commodities, just as his father did. Abdul started with the importation of rice, flour and edible oil. He then expanded by importing steel, billets and iron ore. They were also supplying multiple rolling mils in the country.

In 1990, Delta steel company (owned by the government), contracted BUA International to supply raw materials. BUA was paid with finished products by the government. The government contract gave BUA the much needed windfall.

In 2005, BUA acquired the largest edible oil processing company, Nigerian oil Mills Limited, and then set up 2 flour milling plants in Lagos and kano. Three years down the line, BUA commissioned the second largest sugar refinery in sub-saharan Africa, breaking the eight years monopoly in the sugar industry in Nigeria.

See Also: Agricultural business ideas you can start now and make money.

Ayobamidele Abayomi Ojutelegan Ajani Momodu

Background

Ayobamidele Momodu, popularly known as Dele Momodu, is one of the famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. The Journalist was born on the 16th of May, 1960 as the last child of late Mr. and Mrs. Ajayi Momodu. Dele Momodu is the CEO and publisher of Ovation International magazine.

He is a graduate of Yoruba from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife in 1982. Dele Momodu holds a master’s degree in English Literature (1988) from the same university. He was awarded with an honorary doctorate degree from the University of Professional Studies, Accra, Ghana, in 2016, earning him the title “Doctor of Humane Letters”.

Dele taught at the Oyo State College of Arts and Science in Ile-Ife, between 1982 and 1983 while on National Service. He was a secretary to the ex-Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Chief Akin Omoboriowo between 1983 and 1985.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Dele Momodu’s entrepreneurial journey started when he resigned from Motel Royal Limited in 1986. A company owned by Oba Okunade Sijuwade Olubuse II, the Ooni of Ife. He resigned to pursue his post graduate degree in English literature.

Dele worked with different print media to develop himself and gain experience in the industry. In 1996, he started Ovation International and grew it into what it is today.

Also, in 2015, he formally launched Ovation TV and afterwards launched an online newspaper called The Boss. Momodu has been a recipient of several awards and honours for his achievements in politics, literature, business, the fashion industry and the music industry.

Chief Dele Momodu writes a weekly column called “PENdulum”, published every Saturday on Thisday newspaper.

Jimoh Ibrahim

Background

We are proud to have Jimoh Ibrahim on our list of famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. He is a lawyer and politician . Jimoh was born on 24th February 1967 in Igbotako, Okitipupa, Ondo state to Mr and Mrs. Ibrahim.

He attended the Community Grammar School, Igbotako and then proceeded to the Federal College of Arts and sciences, Ondo. Jimoh graduated with a degree in law from Obafemi Awolowo University Ile Ife, Osun State, Nigeria. Subsequently, he obtained the Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from the same institution.

Jimoh also attended Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA, where he graduated with a combined Master of Laws (LLM) and Masters in International Taxation degree.

He is the chairman of Global Fleet Group, a diversified multinational founded in 2003. The company has business interests and subsidiaries in neighbouring West African countries. Their businesses cut across oil & gas distribution, hospitality, airlines, banking, real estate, insurance, publishing and investment etc. He is also the publisher of the national mirror newspaper in Nigeria.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Jimoh kickstarted his career in Europe with the International monetary fund (IMF) where he worked as a tax consultant. His entrepreneurial journey began when he started executing small building projects using his father’s building materials.

His company Global Fleet is headquartered in Lagos, Nigeria. The company’s current subsidiaries include; Air Nigeria, The Nicon Group, Global fleet building, Global Fleet Oil and gas, Global Fleet Industries, Energy Bank of Ghana etc.

He has also held notable positions in federal and state parastatals as well as in private organizations. He was the former chairman of the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).

His accomplishments serve as inspiration to many, he is one of the Nigerian famous entrepreneurs who has applied their innovative and entrepreneurial skills into building an empire.

See Also: Tourism business ideas to start now and make money.

Jim James Ovia

Background

Jim James Ovia is a popular Nigerian banker and he is one of the famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria today. He is an economist and a philanthropist. He was born in Agbor, Delta state, Nigeria, on the 4th of November, 1951.

Jim Ovia is the founder of Zenith Bank, one of the largest commercial banks in Nigeria. He is the chairman and largest individual shareholder in the financial institution with a stake of slightly more than 9%.

He owns prime real estates across Nigeria and mobile telecom operator Visafone, which had 3 million subscribers before it sold to MTN. Jim is an Alumnus of Harvard Business School.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Following the deregulation of banking sector during Babangida’s administration in the late 1980’s, Jim Ovia alongside some investors started Zenith Bank in 1990. He was at the helm of affairs of the bank for 20 years until his resignation in July 2010. He was reappointed the chairman of the bank in 2014.

Asides banking, Jim Ovia also has an interest in technology. He founded Cyberspace Network Limited in 1995. Cyberspace Network Limited was one of the pioneers of internet services in Nigeria. The company provides software services and network services including 4G LTE, CYBER MAX, METRONET.

He also founded Visafone Communications Limited, a Nigerian wireless network provider in 2007. The company was later acquired by MTN, a leading telecommunications company in Africa in 2015. Before the acquisition, Visafone had more than 3million subscribers.

Femi Otedola

Background

Femi Otedola, a fine gentleman, made our list of famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria. Femi Otedola was born on the 4th of November, 1962 to Michael Otedola and lady Doja in Ibadan. Sir Michael Otedola was a one-time Lagos State Governor who served from 1992 to 1993. 

Otedola is a Nigerian billionaire and businessman who currently heads the Board of Directors, Forte Oil Plc. The business tycoon graduated from the University of Ife, now Obafemi Awolowo, in 1985, and immediately joined the family business.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Femi started out his career right from his home in the 1980s. He worked as marketing personnel for his family’s printing business for a while before venturing into oil and gas. He felt that the oil and gas business was a viable business opportunity which led him to establish Zenon Petroleum Oil and Gas Limited in 2003. Zenon Petroleum Oil and Gas have 147,000MT storage capacity capable of distributing fuels to large manufacturing companies in Nigeria.

Zenon went further to obtain 28.7% share in African Petroleum Limited. Femi Otedola was later appointed the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of African Petroleum Limited because of Zenon’s shares in African Petroleum. He later acquired additional 29.3% share of African Petroleum Limited (56% shares in total) making him the largest shareholder of African Petroleum Limited.

African Petroleum Limited was later changed to Forte Oil Plc with lots of improvement in management and technology put in place which was pioneered by Femi Otedola. Forte Oil gained access to the global market after selling 17% of its equity to Swiss Commodity Trader Mercuria Energy Group.

Otedola is a big-time investor acquiring properties all over the world. In February 2007, he acquired a real estate worth N2.3billion from the Federal government through the Zenon of Stallion House. This acquisition was believed to be a step in the right direction towards the expansion of his numerous business empires.

See Also: Hospitality business ideas to start now for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors.

Orji Uzor Kalu

Background

Orji Uzor Kalu is a politician and a business magnate and is worthy of the famous entrepreneurs list. He was born on 21st April, 1960 to the family of Mr. Johnson Uzor Nesiegbe Kalu and Mrs. Eunice Kalu, in Abia state, Nigeria. Orji Uzor Kalu attended Christ the King School, Aba and Government College, Umuahia, for his primary and secondary education respectively.

Uzor has a degree from Abia state University, a certificate in Business administration from Harvard university, and honorary doctorates from Abia state University and University of Maiduguri.

He is the chairman of SLOK holdings, Daily Sun Newspaper and the New Telegraph Newspaper in Nigeria. He also was the former governor of Abia state between 1999-2007. Uzor is currently an incoming senator of the federal republic of Nigeria, who will assume office June 12th, 2019.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Kalu’s journey into entrepreneurship started at a young age. He started by borrowing his startup fund from his mother which he used to venture into palm oil business. He would buy the oil from the eastern part of Nigeria and sell in the northern part of Nigeria. Kalu later ventured into furniture on a large scale and this led him to establishing SLOK holdings.

SLOK holding is a fully owned Nigerian group of companies with business interest in almost all sectors of the Nigerian economy with strong presence in Western African. The SLOK group is focused on Oil and gas, banking and finance, media and publishing, real estate, trading, manufacturing, insurance, tourism etc.

Prior to his election to office as governor of Abia state, Uzor Kalu had served as the chairman of the Borno water Board, and also the chairman of the Cooperative and Commerce Bank limited.

He is the chairman of the Daily Sun and The Telegraph Newspapers which are among the widely read newspapers in Nigeria with a daily circulation of about 130,000 and 100,000 respectively.

Uzor Kalu was listed in the Forbes 2015 Africa’s 50 Richest and was ranked 49.

See Also: How to start a haulage business in Nigeria.

Dokpesi Anthony Aleogho Raymond (DAAR)

Background

Raymond Anthony Aleogho Dokpesi is a successful media practitioner born in Ibadan, Nigeria on 25th October, 1951. He was born into the family of chief and Mrs Dokpesi from Agenebode, Edo state.

He is the chairman and founder of DAAR Communications which houses the media giants – Africa Independent Television (AIT) and RayPower FM.

Dokpesi started his educational career at Loyola College, Ibadan and proceeded to Immaculate Conception College (ICC), Benin city. He first started his university study at University of Benin, Edo State, and then, completed his studies in University of Gdansk, Poland, where he earned his Doctorate degree in Marine Engineering.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

He started as a personal assistant to Alhaji Bamanga Tukur. Tukur was one of the general managers of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA). Dokpesi also served as a civil servant in the Federal Ministry of Transportation, under alhaji Umaro Dikko and General Garba Wushishi.

Dokpesi’s association with the likes of the late Abiola and Tukurs gave birth to African Ocean Lines (AOL). This was his first business and the first indigenous shipping line in Africa.

AOL did not last long but then, an opportunity came along in the media as a result of the deregulation of broadcasting in Nigeria during Ibrahim Babaginda regime. So, he launched RayPower, the first Nigerian private FM radio station. Two years later, he launched African Independent Television (AIT). We can say that he is the pacesetter in Nigerian media, established before the likes of Silverbird, Galaxy TV etc. AIT has gained coverage and its signal is received in America, Mexico, the Carribean, Europe and Africa.

Dokpesi is one of the famous entrepreneurs in Nigeria whose philanthropic activities can be seen and felt. He has built several schools and offered scholarships to students in tertiary institutions out of his benevolence.

See Also: Examples of transportation business ideas you can start now.

Ifeanyi Patrick Ubah

Background

Ifeanyi Patrick Ubah was born on September 3, 1971 into the family of Mr. & Mrs. Alphonsus Ubah, in Abuja.  He hails from Nnewi, Anambra state, Nigeria.

He dropped out of school at a tender age to learn trade. Ifeanyi has since gone on many business courses and conferences which has helped in sharpening his entrepreneurial pursuits. He also studied Owner/President Management Program at Harvard University, Massachusetts, USA.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Upon the completion of his apprenticeship, Ifeanyi started trading in auto spare parts and later diversified into tyre supplies. Barely 3 years into this business, he began exporting tyres from Nigeria to Ghana and later expanded to Sierra Leone and Liberia.

At this point, business was booming and life was good for young Ifeanyi so he decided to settle in Liberia. Unfortunately, the civil war in Liberia affected his business and made him move back to his fatherland.

He later expanded his business to other part of the world including South Africa, Dubai, Belgium. Having built the needed connections, Ifeanyi ventured into oil and gas business by establishing Capital Oil SPRL in DRC, through which he imported oil and gas from Ibeto Petrochemicals Nigeria. His major customers were transporters and industrial establishments. Ifeanyi Ubah is also, the owner of Ifeanyi Ubah F.C., a Nigerian football club.

See Also: How to start a successful logistics business and make millions.

Ben Murray Bruce

Background

Ben Murray Bruce is a business mogul, a politician, an authority in the entertainment industry and a philanthropist. He is the chairman of the Silverbird Group and the author of the book ‘Common Sense Revolution’. He is a senator representing the East constituency of Bayelsa State in Nigeria.

Ben Murray Bruce is from the roots of Akassa, Bayelsa State. He was born on the 18th of February 1956 in Lagos to Mullighan and Margaret Murray-Bruce. He is married to Evelyn Murray Bruce and they are blessed with four children.

Ben Murray Bruce had his primary and secondary education at Our Lady of Apostles and St Gregory’s College Lagos respectively. Thereafter, he went to the University of South Carolina, United States where he graduated with BSc marketing in 1979.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

After Ben’s education, he decided to work in his father’s store – Domino stores. While working with his father, he realized he wasn’t enjoying working in the store, so he decided to venture into the entertainment industry. Although, Ben’s father was not pleased with his decision to go into the entertainment industry as Ben Bruce initially wanted to be a professor in History. 

Ben Bruce established Silverbird Group in 1980 with a loan of N20,000 from his father. At the time, the company could not afford an office space, so they used a small corner of Domino’s administrative office for their business activities.

Ben had only 6 staffs and the business was involved in only pageantry and program syndication. The company’s first set of pageantry jobs was the Miss Universe Nigeria Pageantry in 1983 and Miss Intercontinental Pageantry 1984.

Today, silverbird group is one of the leading media and entertainment companies in African entertainment industry. The company is now a conglomerate with different subsidiaries.

Princess Offiong Ekanem Ejindu

Background

Offiong Ekanem Ejindu aka Princess Fifi Ejindu is the CEO of Building Support Systems and the Principal Partner of Starcrest Group of Companies. She is a Nigerian Neo-traditional Architect, a fashionista, an entrepreneur and a philanthropist.

Fifi was born in 1962 in Ibadan, Nigeria. She is royalty; her maternal great grandfather, King James Ekpo Bassey of Cobham Town in Calabar, Nigeria was crowned King of Cobham Town by Queen Victoria in 1893.

Fifi Ejindu had her primary education at the Senior Staff Primary School of the University of Ibadan and her secondary education at Queens College, Yaba, Lagos. 

She graduated with a B.Arch degree in 1983 from Pratt Institute, a private design college in Brooklyn, New York. Fifi was one of the first African woman to be awarded a Bachelor in Architecture from the Institution.

After graduating from Pratt Institute, Fifi enrolled at Massachusetts Institute of Technology where she took some courses before taking a job at Grant Associates in New York City. She then went back to Pratt Institute for her Masters in Urban Planning before relocating to Nigeria.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

On her return to Nigeria, Ejindu started the Starcrest Group of companies in 1995. The company comprises of Starcrest Investment Ltd., Starcrest Associates Ltd. and Starcrest Industries Ltd. Starcrest has business interest in real estate, oil and gas, and building construction.

She is the founder of African Arts and Fashion Initiative (AAFI), launched in August 2013, at The Dorchester Hotel, London. AAFI promotes Africa, demonstrates its rich cultural heritage and talent in order to empower the African Youth.

With her passion and concern for the development of infrastructure in Nigeria, Princess Fifi defines her style of architecture as Neo-traditional.

See Also: Social media business ideas to start now for aspiring entrepreneurs.

Ifechukwude Osanedum Jideonwo

Background

Ifechukwude Osanedum Jideonwo was born on 16th March, 1985 in Lagos to Ifeanyi S. Jideonwo and Ngozi A. Jideonwo. He attended K.Kotun Memorial Primary school for his primary education. Thereafter, he went to Adebola Baptist High School and the Mayflower School, Ikenne for his secondary education.

Jideonwo then proceeded to the University of Lagos for his Law degree where he emerged as the best student in Land Law. He was called to the Nigerian Bar in November 2007. Jideonwo also has a masters degree in media and communication from the Pan-African University, Lagos.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Chude is the founder of Joy Inc., an American benefits corporation with subsidiaries in Nigeria. He is also the co-founder of Red Africa. He is heavy on new/social media and has several years of work experience in media, advertising and public relations.

Jideonwo founded Joy Inc, a teaching and media company which is registered as a benefits corporation after he had spent close to two decades building media platforms. Some of the products of Joy Inc. are: The Joy Masterclass, The Joy Congress, Joy: The Pocast, The Joys Clubs, The Joys Store and The Daily Vulnerable.

He is also the co-founder of Red Africa, a company he founded with Adebola Williams. The Future Awards Africa, Red Media Africa, Y!Africa and YNaija are some of the brands of Red. Red has also consulted for world brands like Microsoft, Google, the British Council and the United States Government.

Jideonwo has been privileged to interview a sitting Nigerian president, President Goodluck Jonathan. He has also been recognised by big media brands like The Punch, BusinessDay, and Forbes for his excellence at what he does.

See Also: Photography business ideas to start now for aspiring entrepreneurs.

Olufunmilola Aduke Iyanda

Background

Funmi Iyanda was born on the 27th of July, 1971 in Lagos to late Gabriel and Yetunde Iyanda. She hails from Ogbomosho, Oyo State. Even though her mother died when she was just 7 year old, she still made something out of her life. She attended African Church Princess Primary School, Akoka, Herbert Macaulay School in Lagos for her primary education and International School Ibadan for her secondary education.

Funmi Iyanda has a Bachelor’s degree in Geography from University of Ibadan and also holds a certificate in Global Leadership and Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School. She is an honorary fellow of the University of Cumbria UK.

Journey Into Entrepreneurship

Even though she studied geography, her love for journalism drove her into producing and presenting ‘Good Morning Nigeria’Good Morning Nigeria was a breakfast television show that focused on the injustices suffered by Nigerians.

Funmi also explored her deep passion for sports journalism. She anchored a sports show on MITV LIVE and later covered the 1999 female Football World Cup, the All Africa Games in Zimbabwe, 2000 and 2004 Olympic Games in Sydney and Athens respectively. She also worked on a documentary for the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations.

Funmi gathered experience from her previous works and sort a bigger platform to showcase her talent and this gave birth to New DawnNew Dawn was a daily show on NTA 10 Lagos in 2000. The highly rated program was aired nationally for eight years making it the longest show on NTA.

Over the years, Funmi Iyanda has successfully started four media companies and has produced many TV documentaries, shows, events and special communication project for media organisations.

These famous entrepreneurs inspire us and we hope they inspire you to be more. Let us hear your thought on these entrepreneurs as well. Are there other entrepreneurs in Nigeria who should be on the list? Let us know in the comments.

Let’s create visibility for your brand and put your business on the world map. Contact us today to make your brand the preferred choice for our audience of entrepreneurs and business leaders.

Share:

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

5 thoughts on “Famous Entrepreneurs – List Of Successful Entrepreneurs In Nigeria”

  1. Uchechukwu Maduka

    This was a good read but there were names i expected to see which includes: Tony Elumelu, Innocent Chukwuma and Cletus Ibeto.

  2. Dr. Isaac Anukam

    Great collections. Can l be permitted to use this materials for my book on entrepreneurship. I am an entrepreneurship lecturer. These will surely enrich my students’ mindset. If permitted, please reply. Thank you.

  3. Very impressively interesting. May God soar you higher beyond human imagination. Pls wish you could do a detailed profile on media/tycoon entrepreneurs in Oyo state. We’ll be glad you did on this platform.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Join Entrepreneurs Family

No spam, only business insights and tips. 

Entrepreneurs Sign Up

Business Registration

Most Popular

Join Entrepreneurs Family

No spam, only business insights and tips. 

Entrepreneurs Sign Up

Related Posts

How to close business deals

How To Close Deals And Increase Income For Entrepreneurs

How do you close deals? How do you close your first business deal and grow income year on year? This article explores how entrepreneurs can diversify, create new revenue streams, and close business deals using my own companies as examples. I’ll also share tips for closing deals. Selling More: Diversifying

Startup launch hacks

Startup Launch Hacks To Successfully Start Your Business

Launching a startup can be both exciting and daunting. Effective startup launch strategies are essential for navigating the competitive business space which is why we will be discussing startup launch hacks to help you launch your startup successfully. These strategies can be the difference between success and failure. See Also:

Important Business Skills

Top 5 Important Business Skills for Every Entrepreneur

Nigeria is experiencing a surge in entrepreneurial activities. More people are venturing into business, creating a vibrant and competitive environment. This growth is exciting but also challenging. Entrepreneurs face many obstacles, from financial constraints to market competition. To succeed, entrepreneurs need important business skills. See Also: How to transition from

Scroll to Top

Join Entrepreneurs Family!

Get access to FREE business insights and funding opportunities daily.

Entrepreneurs Sign Up