3. Sir Louis Odumegwu-Ojukwu
Louis Odumegwu-Ojukwu was the first billionaire Nigeria ever produced and was the founder of Ojukwu Transport, Ojukwu Stores and Ojukwu Textiles. He was the first and founding President of The Nigerian Stock Exchange as well as President of The African Continental Bank. He was also either Chairman or on the board of directors of some of Nigeria’s most profitable companies such as Shell Oil Nigeria Limited, Guinness Nig. Ltd, Nigerian National Shipping Lines, Nigerian Cement Factory, Nigerian Coal Corporation, Costain West Africa Ltd, John Holt, Nigerian Marketing Board amongst others. As an honour for supporting the British military during World War II with his fleet of trucks, he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II. The queen – on the request of the colonial administration – was said to be driven in a Rolls Royce owned by Ojukwu.
He won a parliamentary seat during the nation’s first republic.
His son Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu was a Nigerian military Governor and the President of the secessionist state of Biafra. When he died a year later, his wealth was put at an estimated $4bn in today’s economic value.