The Gupta brother is said to have accumulated a R10 billion net worth, toppling African Rainbow Minerals’ Patrice Motsepe, whose personal riches amount to R9,5 billion.
Gupta is appearing on the newspaper’s Rich List for the first time following the listing of his family’s investment company Oakbay Holdings on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) two years ago.
He made his debut at number seven and with that bumped Motsepe, for the first time, off the top 10 list of the country’s wealthiest business people, which include the likes of Steinhoff chairman Christo Wiese, Glencore’s Ivan Glassenberg as well as First Rand’s Laurie Dippenaar.
Of the 200 people who feature on the list, just 35 are black and only seven are women, according to the report.
The Gupta family have in recent months been involved in a series of scandals and allegations that include capturing Zuma and strategic state-owned entities, money laundering, and accusations of failed attempts to capture the National Treasury.
As part of his evidence to former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela that formed part of the report on state capture, deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas blew the whistle on how the Guptas, and in particular eldest brother Ajay, offered him R600 000 in a black bag with the promise of R600 million if he agreed to work with them, ahead of former Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene’s axing in December last year.
The Gupta family have been the recipients of several lucrative government tenders and suspicious state loans, such as one from Eskom that enabled them to acquire Glencore’s Optimum coal mine, as well as an earlier transaction that helped them buy a uranium mine.
Zuma’s son Duduzile, who is a close business partner and associate of the Guptas, is also said to have made hundreds of millions – if not more than R1 billion – out his relationship with the controversial family.