1. Ernesto Taricone ( Originally from Italy)
Source Of Wealth: Real Estate (Trassaco Group, Trassaco Valley)
Net Worth: $1.3 Billion
Ernesto Taricone is an industrial investor and civil engineer, he is the Executive Chairman and CEO of Trasacco Group which employs over 4000 Ghanaians and expatriates.
Ernesto Taricone was born in Italy in 1948; he came to Ghana in 1968 with his father and two brothers when he was still in his teens. The majority of his business is focused on Ghana covering various key sections in the Ghanaian Economy; Agriculture, Mining, Forestry, Construction and Real Estate development.
In the nineties, Taricone after working with construction developers and raising funds decided to use that experience to develop a land his late father, Baron Fiore Taricone had acquired. He started the township which he had envisaged and called it Trasacco Valley (after a town in Italy where his family came from). Ernesto is currently developing Trasacco Valley into a mini town which will take 10 years to complete.
Ernesto acquired his wealth from his construction and real estate development firm, Trasacco Estate Development Company (TEDC), the developers of Trasacco Valley which is the pioneer in luxury planned apartment and high end property developments for the affluent in Ghana. Trasacco also developed and owns the The Aurora Luxury Apartments in Accra.
Development works are still ongoing to expand the Trasacco Valley into a mini-town with 1000 homes and will include a mini golf course with recreational facilities and a commercial zone.
The overall project investment into Trasacco Valley amounts to $400 million, the homes cost between $1 million to $3 million to purchase.
Trasacco Estate Development Company (TEDC) currently has over $500 million in ongoing projects.
Trasacco Group has another subsidiary called Casa Trasacco an interior design company which is managed by his nephew Massimiliano and daughter Agata Taricone.
Another subsidiary of the group; TEDC Quarry located in Shai Hills, has a total production capacity of 60,000 tonnes per month capacity.
Taricone co-owns Michelleti & Co. which he acquired together with two partners in 2004. Michelleti & Co has been operating as a construction firm in Ghana for over 60 years. Its landmark developments include the Hockey Stadium in Accra and the Accra Sports Stadium reconstruction. The company constructed the luxury 61 apartment, the Beaufort Ridge at North Ridge in Accra on behalf of Beaufort properties at the cost of $10 million; The World Bank Office at Ridge, Accra and the One Airport Square building at the Airport City also in Accra.
Ernesto Taricone’s Trasacco Estate Development Company developed and owns the Villaggio Vista Condominium which is now a landmark in Accra for being the tallest building in Ghana. The project cost $125 million to develop and features $2 million penthouse apartments.
Empire Builders Ghana another subsidiary also has a land bank of 150,000 acres.
In agriculture, Taricone owns Sant Agata Agricultural Property of Barone Taricone Ltd with over 52,000 acres of farm land dedicated to pineapple, banana, and other agricultural development. He also owns a 2,103 acre plot of land designated for a tourism development project.
Ital Pre-stress and Construction Products Ltd is also a factory he owns which produces prefabricated concrete sections and manufactures prestressed concrete products. It is the manufacturer of the “Trasacco Fast Floor” (beam and block, hollow core and biscuit slab systems) with depots in Accra and Kumasi.
Tarricone co-owns Royal Aluminium Systems, a factory which was set up for the production of Aluminium Windows and Doors and Curtain Walls. The company recently completed the construction of their new automatic glass factory and has the largest market share for the supply in terms of both volume and product quality in Ghana.
Taricone’s Gulfwing Aviation Ltd based at the Kotoka International Airport also offers helicopter services and provides private executive helicopter transportation for both commercial and passenger transport. Most of the company’s clients are oil and gas companies operating in Ghana.
Other subsidiaries under the Trasacco Group are Fabi Timbers Ltd in Kumasi which specializes in wood processing for exports; with monthly sales of $1 million and Fabi-BRM Wood Processing Co. located outside of Cape Coast; 95 percent of its products are exported to Europe and America.
West Africa Industrial Development is also another factory which produces timber doors.
2. Nabil Edmond Moukarzel (Originally from Lebanon)
Source Of Wealth: Finatrade Group (Commodities like Rice Masters, Sultana Rice, Rice)
Net Worth: $900 Million
Ghana Market Direct Ltd, a subsidiary of Finatrade Group, is an FMCG company with a turnover of $1 billion in net sales. The company distributes well known international branded soft commodities and a range of own brands which includes Sultana, Rice Master, Bella, Delicio. Finatrade controls 50 percent out of the 70 percent of rice imports in Ghana.
Nabil Moukarzel owns the most shares by value in The Finatrade Group which is one of the largest food manufacturing and food distribution companies in West Africa. Moukarzel’s company is Ghana’s largest distributor of food and importer of rice with its Rice Master and Sultana rice brands.
Finatrade, through its subsidiaries, distributes and markets raw commodities and frozen foods. It offers vegetable oil, sugar, rice, cocoa, meat, ice cream, dairy products, beverages, powdered milk, animal feed, tiles, granite, marble, false ceilings, sanitary and kitchen ware. Additionally, the company provides warehousing and logistics services. Finatrade is the largest commodity and distribution company in Ghana, with presence in seven West African countries. Moukarzel employs over 2,000 Ghanaians.
3. Mohammed Ahmed Odaymat ( Orginally from Lebanon)
Source Of Wealth: Diversified, Rana Motos, BBC Leyland & Leylac Paints, Aquafill Mineral Water
Net Worth: $800 Million
Alhaji Mohammed Ahmed Odaymat is a Ghanaian of Lebanese descent. He started as an employee of Toyota Ghana and later went on to buy BBC Industrial Company in 1978, BBC Industrial was then owned by Boutros BouChedid, also a Ghanaian of Lebanese origin. After Odaymat’s take over of BBC Industrial Company, he developed the Leyland and Leylac brand of paint products. The company has currently expanded from a single shed to taking up about 80% of the 4-hectare site on which it is located today.
Mohammed Odaymat also founded Rana Motors and Metal Works Engineering. He started off with a structural engineering workshop and a simple tyre outlet. From then on, the company evolved by diversifying into new business lines, constantly adding reputable brands into its portfolio. Odaymat began commercializing tyres in the late 1980’s, by 1991 he associated with the Goodyear brand. During the late years of 1999 (Ghana’s mining boom), Rana Motors diverted its attention towards the mining tyre segment, which was made accessible by Goodyear’s strong products in this category. These factors led to Rana Motors finally securing an exclusive dealer agreement with Goodyear for earthmoving tyre supplies in Ghana.
Mohammed Odaymat is the Board Chairman of BBC Industrial (Ghana) Limited, producers of Leyland and Leylac paints in Tema. BBC Industrial Company is the largest local paint manufacturer in Ghana and accounts for about 55% of locally produced paints. The average turnover of the company is in the region of $45 million per annum. His son Esam is currently the CEO of the company.
Odaymat’s company, Rana Motors & Metal Works Engineering Co. Ltd. became the authorised distributors of KIA MOTORS in 1986 and have four branches in Ghana (Accra, Tema, Kumasi and Takoradi) and the West African region. The company has a turnover of over US$100 million per annum.
The company also acquired the agency rights for Ashok Leyland commercial vehicles as well as Swaraj Mazda commercial vehicles and tractors, Yuejin commercial vehicles, and Suzuki motorcycles. Yuejin commercial vehicles, and Suzuki motorcycles of the automotive division has a turnover of about $45million per annum.
Odaymat’s tyre company, West Africa Tire Services Ltd are the distributors of Goodyear earthmoving tyres and the principal franchise holders of Goodyear’s Vulco retail arm; with over 500 employees. Rana Motors currently imports the whole range of Goodyear tyres in Ghana and West Africa and other range of automotive batteries.
The mining industry accounts for 30% to 35% of the company’s tyre distribution business with the rest represented by the construction, institutional, and haulage sectors. Rana Motors is a diversified company.
His company; Highland Springs manufactures the Aqua Fill brand of mineral water, which is a brand leader in the bottled water business. The plant in Ghana has a capacity of 20 million litres per year.
The other companies under the Rana Group are; Khomara Printing Press Eakaza Food & Consumables, Belshina Africa Limited and Lana Travel and Tours Limited.
4. The Irani Family (Orginally from Lebanon)
Source Of Wealth: Flour
Net Worth: $800 Million
Two Lebanese brothers, Anthony Irani and Edmund Irani, who immigrated to Ghana founded Irani Brothers & Others Limited in 1967 to produce wheat flour for the bread and pastry industry. It accounts for about 60% of wheat flour sales in Ghana. They provided the required start-up capital and have operated and managed the firm as a family business ever since. Anthony and Edmund Irani, who both had technical expertise in the flour milling business, provided leadership for the company.
One of the unique attributes of the company is that the two brothers developed and implemented a good succession plan to identify and develop the capacity of individuals within the Irani family to take up leadership positions in the company. This plan has contributed to the operational success of the company over the past 40 years. Although Anthony and Edmund Irani are both deceased, the managing director of the company is a member of the Irani family (a son-in-law of the founders). Irani Brothers & Others Limited is the oldest and largest wheat flour mill in Ghana and is one of the most successful of Ghana’s second- and third-generation companies.
5. Kalmoni Family (Originally from Lebanon)
Source Of Wealth: Auto (Japan Motors, Silverstar Auto), Lakeside Estate
Net Worth: $700 Million
In 1912, prior to the First World War, the grandfather of the current Managing Director of Japan Motors Ghana, Salem Kalmoni, arrived in Ghana from Lebanon to start some trading activities. His company, Kalmoni & Sons, soon branched into truck-boards, and in 1958 he imported the first Japanese car; a Datsun, a brand name which was later changed into the world-famous Nissan.
Kalmoni & Sons was renamed Japan Motors in 1965. Today it has five branches across Ghana and employs over 330 people.
The heirs to the Kalmoni fortune Jalal Kalmoni, Salem Kalmoni, and cousin, Nouhad Kalmoni work in the car industry, leading Japan Motors and Silver Star Auto. The other Kalmoni brother, Salah Kweku Kalmoni, is in charge of the family’s real estate companies, which include Advance Constructions, Lakeside Estates and Silver Star Tower.
The Kalmoni’s obtained their fortune from their automobile company, Japan Motors which has seven companies in its stable; Silver Star Auto Limited, Modern Automobile Services (MAS, formerly Enyidado Industries Limited), Oman Fofor Trading Company Limited, Advance Construction & Development Limited, Lakeside Estate/Agri-Cattle Limited, Silver Star Tower Limited and Star Property Management Limited.
Japan Motors is the sole dealer of NISSAN in Ghana, with a market share of 26% of new vehicle sales in Ghana, also, they are the sole distributor of YAMAHA Motor which controls 80% of the motorbike market in Ghana.
The Kalmoni’s Modern Automobile Services deals in a wide range of vehicles from Korea and China and is a main distributor of TATA vehicles with an on-road presence of 7,000 vehicles in Ghana and West Africa. Modern Auto Services also hold the franchise for SsangYong, Lifan and Foton heavy duty vehicles in Ghana
Oman Fofor Trading Company Ltd is also the sole authorized distributor of Canon Products. It is the largest retailer of photocopy machines in Ghana.
Advance Construction is a construction company which operates a block factory and is located at Lakeside Estate.
Lakeside Real Estate Company has built over 700 houses between 2001 to 2011 for the middle and upper class in Ghana.
Silver Star Tower is the manager of the Silver Star Tower building in Accra. Star Property Management; a division of Silver Star Tower also owns properties in exclusive neighborhoods in Accra.These include the Exams Tower Residence in North Ridge and the Duplex Villas at the Airport West Residential Area in Accra.
Silver Star Auto Limited is the largest dealer in the sale and service of Mercedes-Benz vehicles in Ghana, as well as the sale of spare parts in its capacity as General Distributor of Mercedes-Benz.
6. Milad Millet & Family (Originally from Lebanon)
Source Of Wealth: Textiles, Printex, Aquafresh
Net Worth: $620 Million
Milad, a Ghanaian of Lebanese descent founded Millet Textile Corporation Limited in 1958. The company was originally established to manufacture towels. In the early 1980s, the firm changed its name to Spintex Limited and it developed into an integrated textile firm that manufactured high-quality textiles for the Ghanaian and wider African market. Spintex, however, faced severe competition as a result of the influx of imported used clothing onto the Ghanaian market. This was as a result of the liberalization of the Ghanaian economy under the Structural Adjustment Reform Programme of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, which resulted in the abolition of import restrictions. Locally produced textiles could not compete with low-priced used clothing. The name of the company was subsequently changed to Printex in 1997.
7. The Hitti Family (Originally from Lebanon)
Source Of Wealth: Diversified, Ashfoam, Duraplast, Suvinil Paint
Net Worth: $540 Million
Robert Hitti set up Qualiplast in 1973 as a small factory with the name Greenplastica Limited in 1973. A family business, the company started with one small depot and equipment that gave it an operating capacity of between 50 metric tonnes and 100 metric tonnes per month. With a total of 60 employees, its annual turnover fluctuated between US$200,000 and US$300,000 in the early years. The name of the company was changed to Qualiplast in 1992.
Today the HITTI Group consists of 9 companies, located all over the African continent. Some of the subsidiaries under the Hitti Group include; ASHFOAM LIMITED Manufacturers of Foam products, PRO’MOUSSE (NIGER) Manufacturers of Foam products, PRO’MOUSSE (BENIN) Manufacturers of Foam products, DURAPLAST LIMITED Manufacturers of uPVC products, DURAPLAST (NIGER) Manufactures of uPVC Product, QUALIPLAST LIMITED Manufacturers of Household Plastic Products.
The trading arm includes COOLINK LIMITED, NESSTRA (UNITED KINGDOM), NESSTRA (GHANA), HILTI (GHANA), SUVINIL (GHANA).
8. The Azar Family (Originally from Lebanon)
Source Of Wealth: Paint
Net Worth: $520 Million
Elias Azar, a Lebanese immigrant in Ghana set up Azar Chemical Industries as a family business in 1968. The company initially operated under the name City Paints and traded in building materials and imported paints.
The company began manufacturing paints in Ghana in the 1980s, operating under the name Azar Chemical Industries which later became the Azar Group, comprising City Paints Supply Limited and Synrez Ghana Limited. City Paints deals in paints and related products, while Synrez deals in the production of packaging products.
The company is run by his two grandsons; Ghazi Azar and Rustom Azar. Ghazi Azar is the managing director, and Rustom Azar who passed on in July, 2015 was an executive director.
Azar Chemical Industries Ltd is the manufacturers of Azar Paint and SHIELD Acrylic Paint.
9. Ghassan Yared (Orginally from Lebanon)
Source Of Wealth: Forewin Ghana Limited, Diversified
Net Worth: $480 Million
Ghassan Yared owns Forewin Ghana Limited, a Distribution and Marketing Company which was launched in Ghana in March 1993. Rising from very modest beginnings, Hassan has been able to move his company quickly to carve a name for himself and a prominent place on the Ghanaian market map.
Forewin Ghana Group of Companies includes; Mabani Ltd, Mass Industries Ltd, Lewadis FZE, Diplo FZE, Cape Trading Ltd and HMD.
Forewin is the sole marketer and distributor of popular household brands like Peak Milk, St Louis Sugar Cubes, Titus Sardine, Wrigley, Listerene, Red Bull, and GEISHA Mackerel.
10. Serge Bakalian (Orginally from Armenia)
Source Of Wealth: Takoradi Flour Mills, Inheritance
Net Worth: $460 Million
Serge Bakalian is a Ghanaian of Armenian descent and the Executive Director of Takoradi Flour Mills. He inherited the company from his father, Vasken Bakalian. Takoradi Flour Mills had an initial capacity of 200 metric tonnes per day and employed 60 people. Currently, Takoradi Flour Mills has three plants with a total installed capacity of 1,000 metric tonnes per day.
Takoradi Flour Mills has faced several issues in the past three decades. These difficulties included the downturn in the economy in the 1980s, which affected sales and financial performance. Its lack of financial resources made it difficult for the company to import wheat. Some workers were laid off temporarily. The energy crises of 1998 affected operations and Takoradi Flour Mills was unable to meet its targets.
As one can see the Lebanese have gained alot of money from Ghana, and Africa and have used their money to restore their economy.
Here is what RT has to say about Lebanon
“Lebanon is a total mess – a collapsed country with nothing social or socialist whatsoever. Money, ‘business’, flashing wealth is all that matters here.
While Maserati and Porsche sports cars navigate around the potholes of Beirut, misery and filth are swallowing suburban areas. Garbage collection periodically collapses, the country is burning diesel to generate electricity (blackouts and water shortages are endemic). Less than 40 percent of children attend public (state) schools. Medical care is mostly abandoned to the market. There is virtually no public transportation, no city planning, hardly any parks or green areas.
Those who have money throw it around, proudly and vulgarly. There are obnoxiously rich marinas, while the restaurants in the capital are at least twice more expensive than in Paris.
And there is plenty of cash here: from filthy mining and other investments that are plundering West Africa, from drugs being grown in the Bekaa Valley, from those billions of dollars in remittances, and of course from banking (money laundering). Lebanon produces very little. It consumes excessively.
Its reputation in the Middle East is terrible, mainly thanks to the racism and arrogance of many of its citizens.
Paradoxically, the only social force that stands above all religious and sectarian divides, is Hezbollah. But Hezbollah is closely linked to Syria and Iran’s government, and it fights ISIS in the mountains and across the border, as well as the several Israeli invasions and incursions into Lebanon. Predictably, the West put it on the terrorist list.”