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Top 20 Richest People In South Africa: You Won’t Believe Who Worked the Hardest This Time

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In this article, we’ve taken a look at Forbes list and have combined that with information from other sources such as Bloomberg and Ventures Africa to come up with a more comprehensive list of the richest men in South Africa, these are multi billionaires and multi millionaires, all figures are in US dollars .

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20. Irene Charnley


Net Worth: $150 Million Industry: Telecoms

Irene Charnley is a 55-year-old South African and a former trade unionist with a net worth of $150 million. She spent 13 years as a negotiator for the South Africa’s National Union of Mineworkers and later became the Executive Director at MTN, Africa’s largest telecom company. Currently, Irene Charnley is the CEO of Smile Telecoms, a telecommunications products company working out of Mauritius.

She spearheaded MTN’s expansion across Africa and beyond, and played a major role in acquiring Nigerian and Iranian operating licences for the company however, in 2007, she the company under controversial circumstances. In addition to working with MTN, she was also a director of FirstRand Bank and Johnnic and Johnnic Communications. Her estimated net worth of $150 million makes her one of the wealthiest women in Africa
19. Paul Harris
Net Worth: $250 Million Industry: Banking

Paul Harris is one-third of the banking and finance triumvirate known as the three musketeers or the RMB rat pack. He joined Rand Consolidated Investments soon after it was cofounded by GT Ferreira and Laurie Dippenaar in 1977; it merged with Rand Merchant Bank (then run by Johann Rupert) in 1985. He became CEO of RMB in 1992, and in 1998 after the merger of RMB with First National Bank to form FirstRand, he was made CEO of FirstRand Bank, with Dippenaar as group CEO and Ferreira group chairman. Harris was the chief executive of the FirstRand group from 2005 to 2009. He was charged with setting up the Australian subsidiary Australian Gilt Securities in 1997, now RMB Australia. He is a director of Cricket SA and collects art extensively. He has turned Ellerman House in Cape Town’s Atlantic suburbs into one of South Africa’s most luxurious boutique hotels. He has recently begun lecturing on business at Stellenbosch University.

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