African Millionaires: Patrick Ngowi

This is a series featuring millionaires across Africa who have turned heads with their dynamic approaches in the business, oil, and technology industry. Many of them came from humble beginnings and started small companies that later expanded to million dollar empires. African Luxury Magazine will feature these ambitious African men who are putting Africa on the map!


Patrick Ngowi, 28, is a young Tanzanian entrepreneur and founder of Helvetic Solar Contractors, a company that supplies and maintains solar systems throughout the northern region of Tanzania. Ngowi has been featured on Forbes, Forbes Africa, and the African Business Journal and has been revered for his accomplishments at such a young age.

Ngowi began his career at the tender age of 15 selling a popular top-up voucher phone card that was in very high demand. This led him to another business venture of selling phones and accessories through cheap manufacturers in China and Hong Kong. During his frequent trips to these countries he learned of solar power and renewable energy. Like many African countries, Tanzania suffered from poor energy infrastructural issues. Realizing his countries need for alternative sources of energy, Ngowi enrolled at Dhenzou University in China where he studied renewable energy.

While attending Dhenzou University, he began an informal exporting business in which he exported building materials and other goods to Tanzania. Using the capital from his exporting business, Ngowi purchased solar and thermal equipment and launched his business once he completed his bachelor’s degree in renewable energy. Today, Helvetic Solar Contractors brings in an estimated $10 million in revenue a year.

Ngowi has expanded his company to neighboring countries in Africa, such as Rwanda. He plans to continue expand to other countries, as well as, reinvesting in real estate and tourism. Ngowi’s success and impact in his home country has led him to be awarded The Special Achievement Award by the Tanazania Private Sector and the Tanzanian government. He was also nominated for Africa’s Young Person of the Year Award 2013 by The Future Awards  His company has been recognized by the United Nations Defense Facility and United Nations International. Helvetic Solar Contractors continues to grow as Ngowi aims to make the company worth $100 million in the next five years.