12. Omer Ali Shifaw
Omer Ali Shifaw began in the spice business but would leave that to open his own company with a paid up capital of 5,000 ETB or 185 USD.
Unfortunately, after five years of running the business, he would be placed in jail by the Derg military government for long years.
Upon his release, finding his children all grown was difficult yet through hard work he would open up a company named after him (Omer Ali), but would in 1990 change the name to that of his daughters: Nejat International.
Beginning with only the import of items to satisfy the local demand, Omer would in 1995 expand to engage deeply within the coffee business.
Omer owns coffee clearing machines, coffee washing stations and plans to start up a coffee plantation.
By 1998, Omer’s Nejat International had sales valuing at 198,000,000 ETB or 7,400,000 USD and owned the largest warehouse in Ethiopia with all the latest machineries.
All this and more, has made Omer Ali Shifaw one of Ethiopia’s richest men and a self-made one at that.