Madagascar is one of the poorest countries in Africa with more than 75% of its population falling below the poverty level of $50 a year. But in the midst of such glaring poverty, a few Malagasy have built extremely successful companies and created incredible wealth in the process.
Meet 10 Malagasy millionaire entrepreneurs who own companies that have annual revenues of more than $100 million.
10. Edgard Razafindravahy
Razafindravahy, 56, is the chairman of the Prey group, a conglomerate which today comprises more than 10 companies including trading company Sitram Ecoprim and the L’ Express de Madagascar daily newspaper, Madagascar’s bestselling newspaper.
9. Henri Fraise
Henri Fraise is the leader of the powerful Fraise family that owns the Henri Fraise Fils & Cie group.
The Fraise group, which was created in 1921, has the sole distribution rights in Madagascar for John Deere, Atlas Copco and Caterpillar equipment.
It is also involved in power generation, insurance, airplane charter services and owns the Carlton Hotel.
8. Salim Ismail
Salim Ismail is the chairman of Chairman & CEO Groupe Socota, a conglomerate which is most famous for its textile manufacturing business.
Salim Ismail’s father started the business in Madagascar in 1930 as a fabric importing business and subsequently established a fabric mill which is one of the largest in Madgascar today.
Socota is also involved in Aquaculture and seafood distribution.
7. Karim Barday
Source: Biscuits and confectionery
Karim Barday is the head of the Basan Group, arguably the largest food distribution company in Madagascar.
Barday got his start in business as a fabric dealer, and then went on to establish a tannery.
He ploughed his profits into distributing consumer products such as biscuits and chocolates before eventually delving into manufacturing these products.
6. Iqbal Rahim
Source: Oil trading
Iqbal Rahim founded the Galana Group in 1991. It is now one of the largest integrated energy services providers in Africa, specializing in Trading, Shipping, Terminal Storage and Distribution of refined petroleum products in East and Southern Africa, as well as the Indian Ocean Islands.
According to a representative of Galana, the company recorded more than $1.8 billion in revenue in 2016. Rahim owns at least 50% of the company.
5. Naina Andriantsitohaina
Source: Financial Services
In 2009 Naina Andriantsitohaina, 54, took control of the Andriantsitohaina Group from his legendary father, Jean-Charles Andriantsitohaina, who founded the group.
The businesses in the conglomerate include printers NIAG, chemicals distributor Prochimad, leading commercial bank BMOI and the Ultima Media press group.
4. Marc Ravalomanana
Source: Dairy Production
Madagascar’s former president is also one of its most successful businessmen. Ravalaomanana, who was president up until 2009, is the founder of Tiko, Madagascar’s largest producer of fresh milk, yoghurt and butter.
The company has revenues of more than $150 million per annum. Ravalomanana also owns a stake in Tiko Air, an airline charter company.
3. Hassanein Hiridjee