Nigerian billionaire draws $10 million in cash just to look at it

Aliko Dangote withdrew $10 million to convince himself that it was real, not just numbers on paper.

At the Mo Ibrahim forum in Abidjan, Ivory Coast on Saturday, Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote told an audience about the time he took $10 million (about R140 million) in cash out of the bank just to look at it. 

The Nigerian billionaire told the audience: 

“One day, I cashed $10 million, put them in the boot of my car I put it in my room. I looked at them and thought ‘now I believe I have money’ and took it back to the bank the next day.” 

He said that the process made the money more real – not just numbers on paper. 

“When you’re young, your first million is important, but after, the numbers don’t mean much,” he said. 

Aliko, a manufacturing tycoon with a range of companies spanning cement to flour, said that the two most promising sectors for Africa’s future were agriculture and new technologies. He advised young African entrepreneurs not to get carried away by the first flush of success.