Reaching Great Heights with Prince Ngwenya: A Success Story for Entrepreneurship in South Africa


Jared Kruger

26 May 2019

Reading time: 7 min Thought leadership articles
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Born with an entrepreneurial spirit, Prince Ngwenya was always headed for a life of success and significance. Discover how he seized opportunities from a side hustle, refined his business idea 7 times, expanded his skills through an entrepreneurship course, and finally, arrived at what is known today as Lotsman Lifestyle.

An Entrepreneurial Journey Paved with Grit and Determination

When he was growing up, Prince took on a number of side jobs to earn money for food, entertainment and time with his friends. Back then, he didn’t know that he would one day have his own business in the entertainment industry.

This is his story.

  1. And so Lotsman Lifestyle was born
  2. But startup life is tough (which is why he loves it)
  3. And then the entrepreneurship course happened

And so Lotsman Lifestyle was born

Entertainment was never something that South African entrepreneur, Prince Ngwenya, took for granted. “Fun” was earned through hard work and determination. Until fun and hard work became the same thing, because he was building a business of his own. A business, in the entertainment industry.

“I would help my uncles get passengers for their taxis, and I would wash cars in my neighbourhood, just to have lunch money. Eventually I started involving myself in anything and everything I could to get money, and I soon developed a database of people, businesses and places. I saw an opportunity to make use of the connections for business purposes.”

From those connections, Prince created a business specialising in concierge services in the entertainment industry.

“Lotsman Lifestyle offers entertainment travel packages for people who are looking for fun holiday packages, including VIP packages for discreet clientele, and sales and rental in the luxury automotive and property development industries. Lotsman Lifestyle is all about giving you the fabulous lifestyle without having to stress about sourcing the goods, services and products yourself.”

But startup life is tough (which is why he loves it)

He might wear one of the biggest smiles you’ve ever seen, but creating the business and life he wanted was no easy feat for Prince. His journey was (and still is) packed with challenges, particularly when it comes to government processes.

My challenges are taxes for import and export of goods, calculations at the Department of Labour for SDL, keeping track of SARS business registrations and taxes, lengthy meetings between ward councillors, SAPS, Metro police and community members for public events, all while trying to stay up to date with industry regulations, like vehicle permits.

That’s a lot to deal with. And yet, when Prince speaks of his challenges as an entrepreneur, it’s hard to ignore the passion and excitement in his voice. Because hard work doesn’t scare him, or even exhaust him. It’s what gets him out of bed in the morning. Which is why Prince told us that the uncertainty of the next pay check is his favourite part of being an entrepreneur.

I enjoy not being in a comfort zone, always having to think on my feet to be ahead of a competitor, researching other entrepreneurs’ moves in different continents or regions, and meeting up with other entrepreneurs to put together sustainable business concepts. Sharing ideas with open minded people always leads to great things.

And then the entrepreneurship course happened

Prince was always able to spot entrepreneurship and business opportunities in South Africa. Still, he knew that he needed some direction so that he could refine his ideas into a business with a purpose. So he joined Startup School’s online entrepreneurship course.

“Firstly, during the course I changed my already good business idea 7 times before finding my core discipline. I also got to know more about myself as an entrepreneur, how to approach my business plan, and so much content from all over the world that helped me to become open-minded to new, different and sustainable markets for my business. Startup School has created a new journey which will see me reach greater heights with all the skills, mentorship and lessons learnt throughout the entire course.”

There’s No Time Like Right Now

Prince isn’t shy about his passion for entrepreneurship. He’s achieved a life that fulfils him, and he wants the same for his fellow South Africans. Which is why he’ll urge you to begin your startup journey – like right now!

“START! START NOW. GET THE IDEA ROLLING – You have to invest your own money into your own ideas, your own time, energy and belief before anyone can take you seriously.”

He also recommends that entrepreneurs research their business ideas thoroughly before they fully invest.

“It may be new to you or your region, but there is someone out there who has either tried the concept or is working on it. Connect with people in the tech world, like programmers, find out how a prototype can be created for your idea (big or small). Get it done and start testing out your idea or passion – you are even more lucky if you are an intrapreneur and are already in the working environment, climbing up the ladder and making moves within an organisation.”

 

If you have any thoughts or questions for Prince, pop them into the comments section below!


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