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Christians in Business: The story of Folorunsho Alakija a Christian Billionaire

If you should come across a person who is insisting that it’s quite impossible to be a Christian and be immensely rich at the same time, then tell them to meet the woman called Folorunsho Alakija.

Born 15 July 1951, Folorunso Alakija is a Nigerian billionaire businesswoman and a Minister of the Gospel. Also a Philanthropist, Mrs. Alakija is involved in the fashion, oil, real estate, and printing industries, and she earns a lot of money simply by being industrious and hardworking.

This easy-going woman oversees several business ventures such as FAMFA Oil Limited, which happens to be her major money-fetching enterprise. She is also the Vice-Chairman of a world-class real estate company known as Dayspring Property Development Company Limited, with investments in different places of the world, as well as Digitalreality Print Ltd., a well-known printing firm.

Born in Ikorodu, Lagos State, Folorunso came into the family of Chief L. A. Ogbara, a Muslim with several wives. In fact, she attended a Muslim secondary school known as “Muslim High School”, in Sagamu, Ogun State, Nigeria, before traveling to England for her secretarial studies at Pitman’s Central College, London.

Related: Christians in business interview: Dapo Sosanwo advises entrepreneurs to deal with customers with integrity

In 2018, the Billionaire made it known that though she was born Muslim, she converted to Christianity at age 40. She explained that she was born into ‘a large and illustrious polygamous Muslim family as number 8 out of 52 children through a father who had 8 wives’.

In her words:

“It happened almost 27 years ago when I gave my life to Christ at the age of 40 and my life has not been the same ever since.’

Mrs Alakija is not only successful as a businesswoman, but also as a wife and mother. She married her husband, Modupe Alakija, a successful lawyer, back then in 1976, and they have been together ever since. Their union produced four children, all grown boys doing well in their various fields.

Alakija, who is also a Grandmother to her grandchildren, splashed a lot of money when her son Folarin Alakija, married Iranian model Nazanin Jafarian Ghaissarifar in a wedding at Blenheim Palace in England. It was even suggested that the wedding was one of the world’s most expensive events.

When we are being told not to despise the days of little beginnings, we can talk about the journey of Mrs Folorunsho Alakija also. She started her career in 1974 as an executive secretary at Sijuade Enterprises in Lagos as a young but focused lady, before establishing a tailoring firm which she called Supreme Stitches.

With diligence and skill, her brand became famous, that she started working for the bigwigs of the society. Her breakthrough came when she got an oil block, and she is currently ranked by Forbes as the richest woman in Nigeria with an estimated net worth of $1 billion.

As a child of God who is aware that God blesses us so we can be an answer to other’s prayers, Mrs. Alakija has been helping many people with her wealth, directly and indirectly. She has a foundation called the Rose of Sharon Foundation that helps widows and orphans through scholarships and business grants.

She is also a Minister of the Gospel, and with her influence, she is able to reach a lot of people with the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Related: Read the interview with a Christian in Business Sunday Moshood

Article written by:

I love to teach and use success principles from the Bible to solve practical problems. My many books tell all the stories. All problems have their solutions in the Bible. I am married with kids.

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