On April 29 in the year 1953, one of the wealthiest men in Africa was born in Ibadan, Nigeria. His name is Michael Adenuga Jr., the founder of Consolidated Oil and telecommunications company Globacom. According to forbes.com, his net worth is $6.4 billion as of August, 2021.
Mike Adenuga was the son of a school teacher and a businesswoman of royal descent. He went to the United States and reportedly worked as taxi driver to support his college studies at Northwestern Oklahoma State University where he finished a business degree and Pace University in New York where he got his MBA.
Upon returning to Nigeria, he took over the family lumber business which he expanded to include trading of machineries, fabric, beer and softdrinks. Encouraged by the government to participate in the oil industry, he formed Consolidated Oil Limited and joined in the bidding of some oil blocks. In 1990, he was awarded the privilege to explore oil in the Niger Delta. Eventually, his company became the first local oil concern to find and produce oil in commercial quantities. That same year, he established Equatorial Trust Bank that grew as one of the largest commercial banks in Nigeria.
In 2002, Mike Adenuga founded Globacom and got the license to operate a telecommunications service in Nigeria. He was later arrested and investigated for alleged irregularities involving Globacom and the country’s vice-president at the time. On bail, he left the country and returned only after he was cleared by the country’s senate. He went on to expand Globacom’s reach beyond the boundaries of Nigeria to include the neighboring countries of Benin, Ghana and Ivory Coast.
Aside from oil and mobile phone, Mike Adenuga also owns a number of real estate located in the country’s major cities.
Mike Adenuga married twice and has seven children.