Patrice Motsepe joins the rich list

2008-03-06 00:00

Not only does South African mining magnate and owner of Sundowns football club Patrice Motsepe feature on this year’s Forbes World Billionaires list, he also appears on the front cover of the latest edition of the prestigious bi-weekly magazine.

The country’s first black billionaire is one of three South Africans on the list of 1 125 billionaires, headed by American investment guru Warren Buffett, who brought to an end Bill Gates’ 13-year run at the top.

Nicky Oppenheimer (173rd) and Anton Rupert (284th) are the other two South Africans on the list.

The Soweto-born Motsepe, ranked 503rd with a net worth of $2,4 billion (about R18,8 billion), trained as a lawyer and became the first black partner at Bowman Gilfillan law firm in Johannesburg before he established a low-level mining contracting business known as Future Mining in 1994.

He has since built the mining conglomerate African Rainbow Minerals (ARM).

The 46-year-old mogul was voted SA’s Business Leader of the Year by the CEOs of the top 100 companies in South Africa in 2002 and also scooped the 2002 Ernst & Young Best Entrepreneur of the Year Award. He is the president of Business Unity South Africa.

He was recently under the spotlight after an explosion at Assmang claimed the lives of six people. ARM part-owns Assmang.

“By billionaire standards, Motsepe has a modest lifestyle. His three sons attend prestigious private schools, but he has only one home … and no yacht or plane,” said Forbes.

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