The richest black women in the world are independent women who have made great wealth with their business enterprises. In a way that is almost unique to women they have turned their faces into international brands that have become solid enterprises, employing a great number of people, and building wealth not just for themselves but for their employees and their families.

The wealthiest black females have largely built their wealth from scratch; making every cent in their bank accounts through hard-work, dedication and tenacity.

Having achieved great wealth and fame, they now serve as examples to young women around the world who look to them for inspiration. For many of these women it is not just about the money; they now have an opportunity to make some positive impact in the world.

Top 10 Richest Black Women In The World

1. Oprah Winfrey

Net worth: $3.5 Billion

Oprah Gail Winfrey is listed by every relevant authority as the richest black woman in the world with a net worth of US$2.6 billion. She is also the most famous black woman, and the most recognizable black woman at the same time.

Oprah Winfrey is talk show host, television producer, actress, author, and philanthropist. Her flagship venture; The Oprah Show aired for 25 years on national television, and was syndicated across several other distribution channels. It remains the highest rated Daytime Talk Show in American history.

But she was not handed her money or fame; Oprah Winfrey was born into poverty in a rural setting; and her mother depended on welfare payments to put food on the table.

Oprah Winfrey became a millionaire when her talk show was syndicated on national TV. She negotiated the ownership of the show, and then established her own production company; making her the first black woman in America to own a television production company.

2. Isabel Don Santos

Net Worth: $2 Billion

Isabel Don Santos, the second richest black woman in the world is the eldest child of President José Dos Santos (Former Angolan President). She has made a lot of success from investing and has stocks in numerous businesses.

Isabel has shown interest in business from a tender age, and this explains how she is controlling stakes in numerous companies in Angola and Portugal.

3. Rihanna

Net worth: $1.7 Billion

It seems like only yesterday when Rihanna played second fiddle to Beyonce in the entertainment industry. Well, those days are long gone; she is an accomplished musician, actress, and business woman.

Rihanna is now one of the richest women in the world; and one of the most recognizable female faces in the world. Rihanna has her roots in Barbados; but it was the American entertainment industry that gave her the wealth and the fame upon which she built her brand.

Since the days of her umbrella; she has built a fortune from music, acting, fashion designer, and businesswoman. Her Savage X Fenty lingerie line is worth several millions.

4. Ngina Kenyatta

Net worth: $1.5 billion

Mama Ngina Kenyatta is the matriarch of the Kenyatta family. She was the wife of the first president of Kenya; Jomo Kenyatta; and she is also the mother of the current president of Kenya; Uhuru Kenyatta.

Ngina Kenyatta presides over a family fortune estimated to be around $2.5 billion, but her own personal share of the fortune is estimated to be around 1 billion dollars.

Mama Kenyatta is said to be a stakeholder in almost half of all multinationals in her country Kenya. She also has several direct investments in real estate, farming, banking, and manufacturing.

5. Folorunsho Alakija

Net worth: $1 Billion

Folorunsho Alakija is from an unusual location; she is a Nigerian billionaire businesswoman and philanthropist. She has interests in Oil and Gas, Fashion, Real Estate and Media.

She is the richest woman in Africa; and one of the richest black women in the world. Growing up, she was raised in considerable wealth, but her uncommon vision and exposure put her on the path to uncommon wealth and influence.

She completed her fashion design course at the American College and she also went to the Central School of Fashion, London. Armed with the knowledge, she went on to establish Supreme Stitches, her fashion house which is now one of the major fashion houses in Nigeria.

6. Hajia Bola Shagaya

Net worth: $959 Million

Hajia Muinat Bola Shagaya is a Nigerian businesswoman with interests in financial services, fashion, and politics. As a young woman she started out in the banking sector at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) before discovering that she could make far more profit by importing goods into the country.

For a long time she has been into the importation of photographic materials into the country. She is also a member of the board of Unity Bank, as well as Managing Director of Practoil. She is a real estate developer and investor, as well as a Fashion Designer.

7. Sheila Crump Johnson

Net worth: $750 Million

Sheila Crump Johnson is an American billionaire businesswoman. She is a media mogul, a real estate investor, as well as an executive in the hospitality industry.

Sheila Crump Johnson is the co-founder of BET, as well as the CEO of Salamander Hotels and Resorts. She made her money earlier in her career in the media world; as far back as 1979, Sheila Crump Johnson co-founded the cable TV channel Black Entertainment Network (BET) with her then-husband.

She successfully managed BET, turning it into one of the world’s most prestigious media brands, and the BET awards into one of the most sought after media accolades.

When she divorced from her husband in 2002, she sold off her shares in BET, and then invested in hotels in Florida and Virginia, as well as other places.

8. Janice Bryant Howroyd

Net worth: $629 Million

Janice Bryant Howroyd is an American entrepreneur, educator, ambassador, businesswoman, author, and mentor. She is one of America’s self-made women. She is also well known as the first African American woman to build a Billion Dollar Company.

Her company ActOne Group, Inc. provides employment, workforce management, and procurement solutions to top companies in America, as well as to government organizations.

9. Beyoncé

Net worth: $500 Million

Beyoncé Giselle Knowles Carter is one of the most recognized female faces in the world; she is a celebrated singer, actress, and media personality. Beyonce is married to billionaire rapper and investor Jay Z, she made her money independently of him, through her music and clothing ventures.

Beyonce has been propelled into stardom through her own talent and dedication; she started by performing in singing and dancing competitions as a child. She attained fame as part of Destiny’s Child, one of the best-selling girl groups of all time.

Since then she has cemented her place in history with several Grammy awards, selling out every arena, and making a hefty amount of money in the process.

10. Wendy Appelbaum

Net worth: $259 Million

Wendy Appelbaum is a South African business woman, mentor, and philanthropist. She is one of the most influential and powerful women in Africa.

She was not born into poverty; she worked in her father’s company, Liberty Group, and served as a director at the company. She grew the company and her personal wealth as the head of Liberty Group Investors, but later decided that it was time to move on, and so she sold off her shares and then started a wine farm with her husband in 2003.



The richest black women in the world have made their money in a diverse range of investments. Many of them are self-made millionaires and billionaires and have relevant records outside the money they have made in their careers.