Colombia’s richest man adds $3bn to bank fortune in rally


Billionaire Luis Carlos Sarmiento Angulo’s companies are poised to extend their rally after leading Colombian stocks in 2019, benefitting from strong consumer demand in one of Latin America’s fastest growing economies.

Shares in the companies that make up Sarmiento’s financial conglomerate were the top performers in the country’s benchmark Colcap index, led by Corporacion Financiera Colombiana SA, an investment company known as Corficolombiana, which posted an eye-popping return of more than 100%. Banco de Bogota and the parent company Grupo Aval didn’t fare poorly, with returns of around 60% and 40%, well ahead of the Colcap’s 26% gain.

The stock rally has boosted Sarmiento Angulo’s net worth by about $3 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. The 86-year-old Grupo Aval founder is the richest person in Colombia, worth an estimated $12.2 billion, and the nation’s second-wealthiest citizen after Alejandro Santo Domingo.

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