Around 356 billionaires lived in Kenya last year, according to reports. This puts Kenya in fourth in the list of African countries with the highest number of billionaires. With 2169 billionaires, South Africa comes first followed by Egypt with 932 billionaires and Nigeria with 531.
The individuals taken into consideration have net assets worth more than Sh1 billion which is equivalent to $10 million.
About 73 percent of the 356 billionaires in Kenya are from its capital Nairobi. This puts Nairobi in fifth after Johannesburg, Cape Town, Cairo, and Lagos in the list of African cities with the highest number of billionaires. Also, 16 multi-billionaires in Kenya earn their wealth form the capital.
This very fact that 73 percent of the 356 billionaires in Kenya reside in Nairobi provides evidence about the economic development being misbalanced in Kenya.
According to the report, many of the Kenyan billionaires made their money from the manufacturing, real estate, and technology sectors. Over the last decade, wealth held by Kenyan increased by 64 percent, however, the richer section of the Kenyan population took the hit as the Nairobi Stock Exchange lost nearly a fifth of its market value.
When it comes to the eastern Africa region, Kenya has the highest number of billionaires followed by Ethiopia with 154 billionaires, Tanzania with 99, and Uganda 67.
The report also points out that there are 8,600 Kenyans who holds assets of over Sh100 million.
While 16 percent of the world’s total population resides in Africa, the continent only accounts for just 1 percent of the total wealth. Africa currently holds around $2.2 trillion of private wealth, while the wealth held by the rest of the world is estimated to be around $304 trillion.