African Millionaires: Strive Masiyiwa

This is a continuation of a series featuring millionaires across Africa who have turned heads with their dynamic approaches in the business, oil, and technology industry. Many of them came from humble beginnings and started small companies that later expanded to million dollar empires. African Luxury Magazine will feature these ambitious African men who are putting Africa on the map!



Strive Masiyiwa, 53, is the founder and chairmen of Econet Wireless, a global telecommunications group with offices in Africa, Europe, and Asia. As an entrepreneur from humble beginnings, Masiyiwa’s parents fought against the odds to raise enough money to send him to school in Europe. He attended private school in Edinburgh, Scotland and later continued his education at the University of Wales where he studied electrical and electronic engineering and graduated Cum Laude.

He briefly worked in the computer industry in England, but later went back to Zimbabwe to establish his company. Today, Econet Wireless has expanded to countries across Africa, Europe, the East Pacific Rim and South America. Beyond the telecommunications industry, Masiyiwa has invested in a variety of business ventures including renewable energy, financial services, insurance, and hospitality.

In addition, the success of Masiyiwa’s company is also extended in charitable ways as the company contributes heavily to one of Africa’s largest orphan care programs. He has also dedicated his time towards initiatives aiming to improve conditions in Africa. In 1995, he was appointed by President Bill Clinton to the board of the Southern African Enterprise Development Fund. He is also a member of the Social Dimensions Fund and the Africa Progress Panel.

At the young age of 29, Masiyiwa was the youngest recipient to receive Zimbabwe’s “Businessman of the Year Award.” He was also awarded with the “Manager of the Year Award” and “Entrepreneur of the Year.” By the age of 40, Masiyiwa was featured on Time Magazine’s Global Business Influentials list.