Described as the most affluent and glamorous couple of Africa, the eldest daughter of the Angolan president, Isabel Dos Santos and her husband, art enthusiast and the son of Congolese tycoon, Sindika Dokolo have set up vast business empire across the continent.
Isabel Dos Santos who studied mechanical and electrical engineering at King’s College, London has today come to be ranked as Africa’s eighth wealthiest by Forbes magazine. Her first business venture was a restaurant, Miami Beach, which she opened as a 24-year-old in Luanda. It was in this restaurant that she met her future husband. They married in 2003, at the presidential palace, where several African head of states were among 100 guests, which cost an estimated $4m (£2.5m). It was reported then that a choir was flown in from Belgium and two charter planes delivered food from France.
The couple have three children, divide their time between Luanda, London, Lisbon and Johannesburg, Isabel regularly posting photos on her Instagram account.
(José Eduardo dos Santos, Angola’s president, left, next to his third wife, Ana Paula dos Santos, in Luanda. Isabel dos Santos, his eldest daughter, and her husband, Sindika Dokolo, are in the second row.)
When Isabel dos Santos was appointed by her father as the head of Sonangol, the state oil firm last year, after the president sacked the entire board, there was much furore.
This was in addition to her already existing plethora of business interests in Angola and Portugal— the African country’s former colonial power—including a 25 percent stake in Angola’s biggest mobile phone network Unitel and a 7 percent chunk of Portuguese oil and gas firm Galp Energia, whose chairman Americo Amorim is Portugal’s richest man.
She has more legitimate jewel to her crown: de Grisogono, a Swiss jeweler renowned among the Hollywood A-list for its extravagant, celebrity-studded parties in Cannes and Miami Beach and fans like Heidi Klum and Sharon Stone.
Isabel Dos Santos her husband Sindika Dokolo
Her husband Sindika Dokolo in his own right has a vast amount of wealth, as he inherited his father’s business at 29 years old, in 2001.His late father Augustin Dokolo Sanu had built one of the largest economic empires in the Zaire of Mobutu, with the Bank of Kinshasa as its flagship. He married Hanne Kruse, a Danish woman and gave birth to Sindika. Today, the mother is an honorary general consul at the Norwegian embassy in Kinshasa, where she oversees family affairs in DR Congo.
Sindika Dokolo attended the Parisian elite high school Saint-Louis-de-Gonzague – and where he forged bond with the future political elite of DR Congo, including Olivier Kamitatu. Today he is best known in the small world of African art, as the first art collector of the continent. He is also the owner of the exceptional diamond, the “404”, valued at 16 million euros and the largest ever unearthed from the Angolan subsoil.