Afrobeat was developed in Nigeria in the late 1960s by Fela Kuti who, with drummer Tony Allen, experimented with different contemporary music of the time. Today, the iconic music genre has transformed into Afrobeat, a 21st-century West African music genre that blends genres like Hip Hop, House, Jùjú, Ndombolo, R&B, and Soca into one single sound.

Global icons like Wizkid, Davido, Burna Boy and Sarkodie are a few of the many Afrobeat artists taking the sound beyond borders today. Nonetheless, this article is centered on the top ten Africa’s biggest Afrobeats Artistes who have made a fortune from this afro-fusion sound.

1. Youssou N’Dour ($40Million)

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Youssou N’Dour is a Senegalese singer, songwriter, musician, composer, actor, and businessman who is also known for his exploits in politics in his home country of Senegal. From April 2012 to September 2013, he was Senegal’s Minister of Tourism. The 63 year old has earned multiple nominations and many awards, including a Grammy in the Best Contemporary World Music Album category for his commercially successful album, “Egypt” in 2005.

2. Davido ($40Million)

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Davido is another biggest Afrobeats Artiste in the World. David Adedeji Adelekewas (Davido) was born into a billionaire family, but hard work seems to have paved the way for the Nigerian singer. Davido’s second single, “Dami Duro”, brought the singer to fame. “Dami Duro” was part of his first album ‘Omo Baba Olowo’ released in 2012. Asides from music, the 29-year-old American-Nigerian singer, songwriter, and record producer has also made an enormous fortune from brand sponsorship and endorsements which has contributed to his current net worth.

3. Wizkid ($35Million)

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Since coming to the limelight with his 2010 smash hit single “Holla at Your Boy”, the 32-year-old Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun, widely known as Wizkid has never looked back as he continues to take Afrobeat from Africa to the entire world. He is a brand ambassador to many Nigerian and International brands. Wizkid is the most awarded African artist in BET history. In 2012 and 2017, Wizkid won the Best International Act category.

In 2020 Wizkid was also among the recipients of the BET Her Award due to his collaboration with Beyonce in the Brown skin Girl track. The Grammy award winner is one of the few Afrobeat artistes in Africa currently making timeless music which is why it is no surprise that his latest album, Made in Lagos, released in 2020, is still topping the music charts today.

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4. 2Baba ($18Million)

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2Baba is a household name that breeds music, quality and Africanism with 21 Awards to his name. Born Innocent Idibia, 2baba is widely regarded as one of Nigeria’s greatest and most influential musicians. The 47-year-old iconic singer and songwriter shot into stardom with the release of his solo debut album, Face2Face in 2004. That album produced the smashing hit “African Queen”, a song referred to by many listeners as one of the greatest love songs ever recorded.

5. Burna Boy ($17Million)

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Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu, who is known by the stage name Burna Boy, is a 31-year-old Nigerian singer and songwriter known for his exploits around Afrobeat. He rose to stardom in 2012 after releasing “Like to Party”, the lead single from his debut studio album L.I.F.E. He was awarded the African Artiste of the year at the 2020 VGMA.

In 2020, his album Twice as Tall was nominated for the same category at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards, making him the first Nigerian with back-to-back nominations at the Grammys. On April 28th 2022, he became the first African artist to headline and sell out a concert at Madison Square Garden.

6. Rudeboy Boy ($15.4Million)

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Paul Okoye aka. Rudeboy is one half of the P-square duo, both known for delivering smashing hits in the early 2000s and their electric dances. However, since the split in 2017, Rudeboy, now 40 years old, has continued to make great music, much to the delight of his fans. His 2019 hit single, “Reason with Me”, topped the chart when it was released, and the same can be said of many of his other singles. 

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7. Sarkodie ($15Million)

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Michael Owusu Addo popularly known as Sarkodie is a Ghanaian rapper and songwriter, regarded by many Ghanaians as the country’s most excellent afrobeat star. His contributions to the Ghanaian music industry have earned him numerous accolades, including the Vodafone Ghana Music Award for “Artiste of the Decade”. He was the first winner of BET’s Best International Flow artist at the 2019 BET Awards. His latest album, “No Pressure”, released in 2021, continues to top charts in Ghana and abroad.

8. Timaya ($12.5Million)

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Inetimi Timaya Odon, better known by his stage name Timaya, is a multiple award-winning Nigerian singer and songwriter.  His first album “True Story”, was commercially successful, as it produced one of his finest solo singles of all time- Dem Mama. Timaya, who has been very active in the Nigerian music industry, has won many awards that have earned him a fortune and made him one of Africa’s richest musicians.

9. Olamide ($12Million)

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Since his successful debut album “Rapsodi” in 2011, Olamide Gbenga Adedeji, widely known by his stage name Olamide or Olamide Baddo has cemented his status as one of the most prominent and influential afrobeat acts of all time. He has received numerous awards in the Nigerian music industry, including Best Indigenous Artiste and Album of the Year. All of his hard work and music awards have helped him become one of Africa’s top ten richest musicians.

10. Diamond Platnumz ($10Million)

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Nasibu Abdul Juma Issack, popularly known by his stage name Diamond Platnumz, is a Tanzanian bongo flava recording artiste, dancer, philanthropist and a businessman of Ha heritage. He was the only East African nominated in BET award for the BET Awards 2021 in the Best International Act category. Diamond Platnumz as one of the biggest Afrobeats Artistes in Africa to set record in the Tanzania Music winning 7 awards, including Best Male Writer, Best Male Artist, Best Song Writer and Best Male Entertainer of the Year.