The richest families in Nigeria are those who have managed to preserve their wealth. These great families now enjoy wealth and influence due to the hard work of their predecessors- a thing that is quite rare not only in Nigeria but all over the world. By uniting, and working together, they have been able to create enduring legacies not just for themselves but for their generations yet unborn.
Nigeria’s wealthiest families have invested their money all over the country; employing thousands of Nigerians in the process. They have been able to achieve great things outside the country as well; taking their family fame abroad, while flying the country’s flag at the same time.
Top 10 Richest Families in Nigeria 2023
1. Dantata-Dangote Family
The Dantata-Dangote Family is without any doubt the wealthiest clan in the whole of Nigeria. This is old money; a family that has consistently made wealth for at least four generations, and that has the richest black man in Africa and the world. The Dantata-Dangote family was established by Alhassan Dantata (1877 – 1955) who was a dealer in commodities such as Kola Nuts and Groundnuts, and who was also a distributor of European goods in Kano.
After proper training; his son Sanusi Dantata also engaged in the trading, and became very successful; in fact he was the biggest merchant in Kano, and northern Nigeria. Following the family tradition, Sanusi Dantata gave seed money to his nephew Aliko Dangote to start his own trading business in Lagos- as a way of expanding the family business southward.
Unknown to him that seed money would grow into one of the biggest conglomerates in Africa; from humble beginnings as a trading business, it would expand into manufacturing, oil production, construction, and so on.
The Dantata-Dangote Family is today led by Alhaji Aliko Dangote; Nigeria’s number one industrialist. Following the footsteps of those before him, he has gathered his extended family; establishing them in business, and grooming them to succeed him in business. Other members of the family are Alhaji Abdulkadir Dantata, Aminu Dantata, and many others.
2. Ibru Family
The Ibru Family is one of the richest and most influential in Nigeria; this is a family that is in at least its fourth generation of wealth, and that wields significant influence, especially in the southwest region of Nigeria. The Ibru Family was established by Michael Ibru who established the Ibru Organization back in 1956.
Michael Ibru started by selling frozen fish out of the back of a truck; he started that company after gaining experience from working with United Africa Company. That was the beginning of Ibru Sea Foods; a business with which he sold fish imported from Japan. After the business became well established he diversified to other areas.
Today, the Ibru Organization is a conglomerate with operations in publishing, shipping, agriculture, auto dealership, aviation, real estate, oil and gas, and also advertising. The Ibru Organization has over 10,000 employees, and is a multi billion dollar company.
Some members of the Ibru Family include; Cecilia Ibru (Former CEO of Oceanic Bank), Olorogun Oskar Ibru, Oboden Ibru, and many others.
3. Tinubu Family
The Tinubu Family is the most powerful and influential family in southwestern Nigeria. The family is known for politics and business. The Tinubu Family was established by Abibatu Mogaji- a business magnate who was the Iyaloja of Lagos. The Iyaloja means leader of the market, literally mother of the market. She was the mother of Bola Ahmed Tinubu known as the Jagaban. Bola Ahmed Tinubu is a former governor of Lagos state; and the most formidable politician in the South West.
Bola Tinubu is an accomplished politician; he is presently the National Leader of the ruling All Progressive Congress APC. Aside from his accomplishments as a politician he also has a huge business empire that spans Tax Collection, Media, Transportation, Advertising, Infrastructure, and Finance.
Some prominent members of the Tinubu Family include; Oluremi Tinubu (Senator), Adewale Tinubu (OANDO), Mulikat Adeola Akande (Senator), Folashade Tinubu-Ojo (Iyaloja of Lagos).
4. Murray-Bruce Family
The Murray-Bruce Family is another wealthy and illustrious family. The Bruce Family is mostly a business family; one that is well established and connected. The Family hails from Bayelsa State in South-South Nigeria; and was founded by Bessy Lee a Bayelsa woman, and James Lee from England.
It is not exactly clear how the family became established in business circles, but some of its history is traceable. Ben Murray Bruce leads the family after the passing away of its Matriarch in 2022. He is a media and communications magnate who was Managing Director of the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) for many years.
Today he is the head of the Silverbird Group, which has businesses such as Silverbird Television, Rhythm FM (Radio Station), Silverbird Galleria, and Silverbird Cinemas. His company has also hosted the Most Beautiful Girl in Nigeria (MBGN) for many years.
Some members of the Bruce Family are Ben Murray Bruce, Guy Murray Bruce, Evelyn Murray Bruce, Cody Murray Bruce, and Jasmine Murray Bruce.
5. Briggs Family
The Briggs Family is one of the most influential families in the South South region of Nigeria; the family is involved in business and politics. The family was founded by Chief Olu Benson Lulu-Briggs who died in 2018, but was buried in 2021. He founded the oil company known as Moni Pulo Limited (MPL), a private indigenous oil and gas exploration and production company.
The family is now led by his son; Chief Dumo Lulu Briggs; he controls the oil company, and other investments left by his father. Other prominent members of the family include Mrs Seinye Lulu-Briggs; she is Chief O.B Lulu Briggs’ widow. Mrs. Seinye Lulu-Briggs is the Chief Executive Officer of Rachael Hotels Limited- a seasoned businesswoman.
6. Okoya-Thomas Family
The Okoya-Thomas Family is one of the most popular families within the social circles of Lagos. The family was established by Prince Molade Okoya-Thomas; a distinguished businessman who is best known as the former Chairman of CFAO, a company he joined as an accountant.
Okoya-Thomas was also involved in many other companies and investments; he was Director of Transcap Nigeria Limited, Gateway Bank Plc and Niger Motors Industries Limited, NFI Insurance Company Plc, and other companies. He was also the Chairman of Studio Press Nigeria Limited.
Some prominent members of the Okoya Thomas family include; Princess Olajumoke Abidemi Okoya-Thomas (House of Reps), Tosin Alobo Bakare, Olayinka Irene Taiwo, and Ayodeji Okoya-Thomas.
7. Tejuosho Family
The Tejuosho Family is very popular and influential in Lagos, the family was established by Bisoye Tejuoso, a prominent Nigerian businesswoman from Abeokuta whose father interestingly was a farmer. She held the prominent chietaincy title of Iyalode, and she was always involved in all things related to Egba land. She was a dealer in foodstuff; she took them from the south via rail to the north, and sold them to southerners living in the north. She also established Teju Industries; makers of mattresses.
The Tejuosho Family has produced several important and influential people; His Royal Highness Oba Adedapo Adewale Tejuoso, the Osile of Oke Ona of Egbaland; Lanre Tejuosho (a Senator), Adefunmilayo Tejuosho; Prince Kayode Tejuosho; and Funmilayo Tejuosho.
8. Adeleke Family
The Adeleke Family is one of the richest families in Nigeria; it is a business and political family- one that has produced several prominent people over the past few years. The Adeleke Family is led by Adedeji Adeleke; he is a billionaire businessman who owns Pacific Holdings, and who is the President of Adeleke University; one of the fast rising private Universities in Nigeria.
Ademola Adeleke is a politician who was one senator representing Osun West Senatorial District, and who now serves as the Governor of Osun State.
Other Members of the Adeleke Family include David Adeleke (Davido), Adewale Adeleke, Bamidele Adeleke, Sharon Adeleke, and Shina Adeleke. Late Isiaka Adeleke was also a formidable politician.
9. Folawiyo Family
The Folawiyo Family is a popular family in Nigeria. This is a family that is well established in the Nigerian business environment; it has traded commodities for more than 40 years. The Folawiyo Family was established by the Late Chief Wahab Folawiyo who established the company known as Yinka Folawiyo and sons, a commodities business that became the biggest supplier of cement in Nigeria.
Today, Yinka Folawiyo Group is into is into energy, agriculture, shipping, and real estate. The family is now led by Tunde Folawiyo, son of the late Patriach.
Other members of the Folawiyo family include; Yomi Folawiyo, Lanre Folawiyo, Bolaji Folawiyo, and Rene Folawiyo.
10. Igbinedion Family
The Igbinedion Family is the wealthiest in Edo State, and one of the best known in the South South. The family was established by Chief Gabriel Igbinedion who imported motorcycles during the 70’s. People came from all over the country to Okada in Edo State to purchase those motorbikes, thus creating the name Okada. This impressive feat lead Oba Akenzua II (1899 –1978) to confer upon him the title of Esama of Benin.
His son Lucky Igbinedion has also been a two term governor of the state. The Igbenedion Family has various investments in Education, Aviation, Finance, Hotels, Advertising, Media, and so much more.
Members of the Igbenedion family include Chief Gabriel Igbinedion (Patriach), Lucky Igbinedion (Former Governor of Edo State), Omosede Igbinedion, Peter Igbinedion, and Charles Igbinedion.
The richest families in Nigeria are some of the most popular socialites in the country. Aside from their business empires many of them have ventured into politics with varying degrees of success. Nevertheless, they serve as sources of inspiration to other Nigerians as to what is possible with hard work and dedication.