Money Moves May 06, 2021 at 02:00 pm

The four richest Black people in the UK right now and how they made their money

Abu Mubarik May 06, 2021 at 02:00 pm

May 06, 2021 at 02:00 pm | Money Moves

Mo Ibrahim during his address at the launch of the 2013 Ibrahim index of African Governance, and the announcement of the prize for Achievement in African Leadership, at Senate House in central London. Photo: Reuters

It has been exciting to have Black people owning well-to-do businesses across the world despite the unfair political attacks they tend to face in many jurisdictions. In the UK, a few Black people are making serious waves in various sectors of the economy – entertainment, business, sports, and technology – and are generating revenue and creating jobs.

In the recent Sunday Times Rich List, which is a compilation of the 1,000 wealthiest people in the UK, Black people made up less than 1% of the list. For the first time since the financial crash in 2008, the combined net worth of the 1,000 wealthiest people dropped. Inventor Sir James Dyson is now the richest person in the UK, according to the list which includes 85 people from ethnic minority backgrounds.

While 81 of the non-white people on the list are Asian, only four are Black. Below are the Black Britons who featured on The Sunday Times Rich List of 2020 and their net worth.

Mo Ibrahim

According to the Sunday Times Rich List, Sudanese-born Mo Ibrahim is the richest Black man in Britain. The Sunday Times puts his net worth at £859 million ($1.1 million). Mo Ibrahim was once named as Britain’s most high-achieving Black man by the Guardian newspaper.

According to the Times, the 74-year-old did well from a succession of telecoms companies including Mobile Systems International, a consultancy he sold in 2000 for $916 million which earned him some hundreds of dollars.

Also, Mo Ibrahim and his family earned $666 million from selling African telecoms firm Celtel and his Satya Capital equity fund now manages $7bn assets. Satya Capital focuses on promoting business in Africa.

Lewis Hamilton 

Per the Times publication, Lewis Hamilton is the second richest Black person in the UK. He is also the richest British sportsman of all time. Times puts the six-time Formula One world champion’s net worth at £224 million ($311 million), up from £37 million ($51 million).

Hamilton reportedly has a driving contract with Mercedes worth up to £40 million ($55 million) a year plus bonuses. He also has lucrative endorsement deals with IWC, Bombardier, and others. 

Valerie Moran

Valerie Moran, along with her Irish husband Noel, is worth £200m ($277 million). They own an 81.5% stake in a financial technology company, Prepaid Financial Services. On her own, she owns 16.3% of the company and served as its head of client relations and operations.

The couple founded Prepaid Financial Services in 2008 and Moran served as the company’s first employee as implementation project manager. The Zimbabwean-born woman managed to put the company on the global Regulated Financial Services map. Today, her firm is one of the most successfully managed fintech organizations in the world, posting profits for 10 conservative years.

According to Forbes, she enjoys debate surrounding Diversity, Inclusion, Women-In-Tech and FinTech.

Sir Damon Buffini

Sir Damon Buffini, born to an African American serviceman and a British woman, was a founding partner of private equity company Permira and was Chairman and Managing Partner from 1997–2010. He is fourth on The Sunday Times’ annual Rich List with a net worth of £127 million ($176 million). He is a businessman and a philanthropist, establishing The Buffini Chao Foundation with his wife in 2005.

Buffini was also a non-executive board member of SVG Capital plc, a leading British private equity and investment management business headquartered in London. The businessman is a trustee of the Royal Anniversary Trust, which administers The Queen’s Anniversary Prizes for Higher and Further Education. Recently ranked number three in the Times Power 100, a list of most influential business leaders, Buffini was last July made chair of the Culture Recovery Board, an administrative body in the UK that manages the Culture Recovery Fund which seeks to protect UK arts and heritage assets amid the pandemic.

He was knighted in 2016 for his philanthropic and voluntary services.

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