Meet Nigeria’s First Billionaire Before Aliko Dangote

Sir Louis Odumegwu Ojukwu, the first recorded Nigerian Billionaire was considered the wealthiest person in Nigeria and Africa in the 50s. His Net-Worth as at that time was said to be over 4 billion dollars. Shortly before Nigeria’s independence in 1960, Louis Odumegwu Ojukwu, the founding president of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.

The royal honour came after he helped the British during World War II with his fleet of trucks.

He was so wealthy that during the Queen’s visit in 1956, she was chauffeured around in his Rolls-Royce – apparently the only one in the country at the time – on the request of the colonial administration.

Profiled in September 1965 by TIME magazine, Ojukwu made his money by importing dried fish for resale, and diversifying into textiles, cement and transport.

He was the founder of ojukwu Transport, Ojukwu stores, and Ojukwu Textiles. He was the first and founding president and of the Nigerian Stock exchange Market.

He was also the chairman of the board of many profitable companies in Nigeria then such as Shell, Guinness Nigeria limited.

He won a parliamentary seat during the nation’s first republic. He attended a primary school in Asaba and the Hope Waddell Training Institute.

His son Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu was a Nigerian military governor and the president of the secessionist state of Biafra. He was into real estate and was estimated to own over 70% of landed properties in Lagos.


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