Black Excellence: The Success Journey Of How Senegalese Business Magnate Yerim Sow Built A Fortune Estimated At $350 Million

by Duke Magazine

Yerim Sow is a Senegalese business magnate with a wide range of interests. Sow has been quietly building a corporate empire out of the public eye for the past two decades. Forbes Afrique stated in 2017 that he has amassed a fortune of 350 million dollars.

He is the creator of Teyliom Group, an investment firm with a diverse portfolio that includes the Radisson Blu Dakar, Noom, Seen, and Yaas luxury hotels, as well as Bridge Bank, a commercial bank. Sow began his career as a shopkeeper before founding Direct Access, an IT firm, in 1988.

He turned his focus to the mobile phone markets in Senegal and Ivory Coast six years later. After achieving success, the Senegalese turned their attention to larger enterprises.

With his sights set on the telecom industry, he partnered with the Pan-African operator Telecel International to invest in Loteny Telecom, the first mobile operator license holder in Ivory Coast.

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Sow established Teyliom Group in 2001 to combine his telecom interests. Then came MTN, the South African telecommunications behemoth. MTN acquired 51% of Loteny from Sow. According to sources, the Senegalese businessman went on to get a mobile license in Cape Verde, where he founded TPLUS, allowing him to play a significant role in the Guinean telecoms sector. In 2013, the Teylium organization was renamed Teyliom. Teyliom’s commercial interests are no longer limited to telecom.

Sow spent more than $32 million two years ago to open Noom Hotel, a 5-Star hotel in Niamey, Niger’s capital city. According to Forbes, the hotel has 141 rooms, including 123 regular rooms, 10 executive rooms, 5 junior suites, two rooms for disabled visitors, and a prestige suite.

Sow not only owns a commercial bank called Bridge Bank, but he also engaged in the beverage sector when he bought Continental Beverage Company in Ivory Coast. Sow did not overlook the real estate industry in his investment strategy, owning the Radisson Blu hotel and the Sea Plaza.

Sow is one of seven children in her family. Aliou Sow, his father, was a well-known Senegalese construction magnate. His father started the Compagnie sahélienne enterprise, a building company (CSE).

The sow was born in Dakar in 1967 and grew up in the affluent Fann Residence neighborhood. He proceeded to the University of Montreal in Canada after finishing his secondary education. He majored in engineering before moving to the United States to pursue a degree in commerce at Boston University.

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