About PEN

Patrick E. Ngowi is a Tanzanian businessperson, entrepreneur, environmentalist, climate action leader, mentor and philanthropist. He is the founder of Helvetic Group, a clean energy investment company. Helvetic Group has numerous subsidiaries operating across East Africa.

Patrick started his first business at the age of 15 with only $50 in his pocket. At 22, he started his first clean technology company, having studied renewable energy in China. Since then, he has diligently grown Helvetic into a group of successful and diversified companies. Helvetic was the first company to offer renewable energy solutions in Northern Tanzania, demonstrating the business opportunities in providing solutions to combat climate change.

Helvetic renewable energy research and training project is currently instructing 500 individuals on clean energy solutions who then will be empowered to train others. Through solar projects, Patrick and his companies have directly employed 250 people, and an additional 1,000+ people indirectly throughout East Africa.

As a charity connected to Helvetic Group, Patrick has created the ‘Light for Life Foundation’ with a mission of giving back to the community, the economy and the environment. Since its launch in 2012, the foundation has donated over 1,000 Helvetic solar kits with lighting and phone charging capabilities to women throughout Tanzania.

Besides his role in Helvetic Group, Patrick sits as a director or member of a wide variety of global and local institutions including the Tanzania Private Sector Foundation (TPSF) and Tanzania National Business Council (TNBC) – representing Youth and Energy on the council chaired by the President of the United Republic of Tanzania; member of the CEO Roundtable of Tanzania (CEOrt), East Africa Business Council (EABC), Global Philanthropy Forum (GPF) and Africa Philanthropy Forum (APF).

In 2015, Patrick was elected as Chairman of the United Nations Global Compact Network Tanzania (UNGCNT). Helvetic is one of the founding members of the private sector led network that aims to unlock social, economic and environmental opportunities through business.

In June 2016, Patrick was one (1) of ten (10) in the world to be recognized by the United Nations Secretary General, Mr. Ban Ki-moon, at the United Nations General Assembly as a Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Pioneer for SDG 7, providing ‘Affordable Clean Energy’ at the first ever inaugural SDG Pioneer Class of 2016; for translating UN’s Global Goals into Local Business.

Patrick’s inspirational story has been featured and profiled extensively on Forbes including a profile called ‘The Young African Millionaire Lighting Up Tanzania’. He has been listed on the Forbes list of ‘30 Under 30 Africa’s Best Young Entrepreneurs’ in 2013 and 2014;  ‘10 Young African Millionaires to Watch in 2013’. Forbes again listed Patrick in the 2014 list ‘Africa’s 30 Most Promising Young Entrepreneurs’ through Helvetic Group. Both Forbes and CNBC listed Patrick among the ‘Top 100 Most Influential Africans 2013 and 2015’. Patrick also appeared on CNN’s ‘African Voices’.