According to a report on Ventures Africa, Jim Ovia, the founder and largest individual shareholder of Zenith Bank, is conservatively worth $1.1 billion.
Jim Ovia co-founded Zenith Bank in Nigeria in 1990, and made his fortune providing financial services to Nigerians. He successfully transformed Zenith bank from a small commercial bank into a fully-fledged financial services conglomerate with operations in investment, private and retail banking across Africa and beyond.
In 2007 he founded Visafone – a Nigerian mobile and fixed telecommunications provider. Ventures Africa reports that the firm has amassed a subscriber base of about 4 million and is worth at least $400 million.
He also owns an expansive real estate portfolio consisting of dozens of landmark commercial and residential properties including The Civic Centre in Victoria Island, Lagos and Aquamarine, an exclusive boat club catering to Nigeria’s richest folks.
His newly formed Quantum Luxury Properties signed a multi-million dollar deal with Marriott- the New York based global hotel group to develop a 150-room five star hotel on the Ozumba Mbadiwe Waterfront in Victoria-Island, Lagos.
Jim Ovia is 58 years old and is now the fourth Nigerian to be listed as attaining the USD billionaire status after Aliko Dangote, Mike Adenuga and Folorunsho Alakija.