For someone born to a poor family, one who grew up in Burgersfort, in the Mpumalanga province of South Africa, Xolane Ndhlovu has tasted the two sides of life. His rag to riches story could make it to a bestseller.
Born to a Nigerian dad and a South African mom, Ndhlovu started hustling to survive in life as a young boy.
At 17, he worked as a dishwasher. He also tried his hands as a disc jockey in clubs and on radio stations. He was popularly known as Master Ziggy. He only recorded a little success here. In 2013, he got involved in gang activities and was eventually arrested and convicted.
His life changed in prison
Ndhlovu's conviction and incarceration eventually became the beginning of greater things in his life as it changed it for good. He developed the willpower to live right and in just eight years, Ndhlovu has risen to the position of CEO of DafriGroup plc, a conglomerate that has its base in South Africa.
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According to Ndhlovu, his view of life changed after reading Richard Branson's biography, Losing My Virg*nity. The book he claimed prepared him for his sojourn into entrepreneurship.
Because of his poverty-ridden background, Ndhlovu could not get proper education but with his new lease to life, he took himself back to school and earned, first, a diploma in media management and later on a B.sc in economics, and topped it with a master's in business administration from Georgia Institute of Technology.
He said he began by investing in a crypto blockchain technology company and by the year 2020, his little step in investment in Binance (BNB) turn over to worth N30 billion making him one of the few successful crypto blockchain investors in Africa.
But by and large, it is his entrepreneurship acumen that separates him from his contemporaries. Ndhlovu fashioned his business acumen after his role model Richard Branson's Virgin Group.
He founded UMEH Group, a R500 million (N14 billion) company. In 2020, he merged it with DafriGroup plc which has its headquarter in South Africa. It has no less than 20 subsidiaries across four African countries and the UK.
Ndhlovu who is also known as a philanthropist has become one of the new breeds of role models for the new generation of Africans.
This he is doing because he has tasted what it is to be poor and knows the challenges the poor faced. No wonder, he recently made a man a millionaire.
Xolane Ndhlovu gifts Nigerian Libya returnee N1.5m
A Nigerian man, Victor Iken, whose story went viral after he told Legit TV in an interview about how he returned from Libya broke, with nothing to show for his desperate journey, had his life changed for good.
In another exclusive video, the man could not hold back tears after Legit TV correspondent, Damilare Okunola, informed him that a kind man, Xolane Ndhlovu, founder and chairman of DafriGroup, sent him the sum of N1.5m.
Iken went straight on the floor and sat speechless, mumbling nothingness for some seconds in utter shock at what he just heard.