Growing up, the dream is to live the big life, living, working and playing in those affluent, posh and clean suburbs. It does not really matter what one aspires to be i.e. whether be a lawyer, engineer, and business executive or academic among others, the quest is to enjoy the best. However, while it’s the dream of many to live in such affluent and posh suburbs, for one man, the dream was not only to live here but to be the one responsible for developing these affluent and posh suburbs.
Mutombo Kitenge’s life journey started in central Africa, specifically in the Democratic Republic of Congo. His life journey, however, would soon take him out of his mother country all the way south to Botswana, a country mostly covered by the vast Kalahari Desert. Botswana is where Mutombo Kitenge did his primary and secondary education and this is where the dream started to take shape.
Upon finishing his secondary studies in Botswana, the ‘bright lights’ of the rainbow nation lured Mutombo. In Johannesburg, South Africa, Mutombo enrolled as a matric student; he passed and proceeded to the University of Witwatersrand where he did his bachelors and a masters in Architecture degree.
Driven by his dream to make a difference in the lives of other people, Mutombo established his own firm, TOP CENTRE PROPERTIES GROUP. This company provides Architectural services, construction services, Project Management services and Interior design services in the building industry. Mutombo assumed the position of Principal Architect, a position he still holds up to this day. The firm focuses mainly on residential architectural and construction solutions. It also has interests in other areas such as commercial, retail, leisure, educational, and hospitality projects.
TOP CENTRE PROPERTIES GROUP is Mutombo’s lovechild as it was borne out of the desire to inspire change by designing complex state of the art facilities and homes first from a conceptual sketch on paper to a built product. Due to his love for his lovechild, Mutombo ensures that the firm offers the absolute best in terms of service. For every client, Mutombo assigns one contact who will fulfil all the demands of the client. This means that a TOP CENTRE PROPERTIES GROUP client has a helping hand available 24/7 proffering advice and guidance on how best to move forward.
Brand reputation means a lot to Mutombo, therefore, his firm has a mixture of exuberant young professionals and experienced architects who ensure that the firm remains relevant and competitive in the industry while keeping its ‘clean’ status.
While the firm has had massive success in its first years in operation, Mutombo acknowledges that he and TOP CENTRE PROPERTIES GROUP have encountered some challenges along the way some of which are still existent to this day. These challenges include sourcing clients, a bureaucratic red tape which makes it hard for the firm to start new projects in addition to affecting cash flow.
Despite the challenges, Mutombo says that he lives by two rules which are persistence and determination. Mutombo also advises other entrepreneurs to stay true to these two rules. His advice to entrepreneurs is that they should not be afraid to turn their ideas into business. Once they turn their ideas into a business, Mutombo states that they should keep going and need not be discouraged by the challenges they will face along the way but rather they should keep determined to reach their destination.
Mutombo also states that from a distance entrepreneurship looks challenging and difficult but once you get into business, new avenues will open and the process will no longer be that difficult. He gives an example of someone trying to cross a river, before s/he starts swimming, the task at hand looks daunting but once s/he takes the first two laps, then everything starts to fall into place as s/he can see the destination.
While acknowledging that an entrepreneur’s life is challenging, Mutombo also says that he finds time to relax away from all the pressure. Away from architecture, Mutombo says he is a guitarist well capable of reading music but jokingly concludes that he is not that good to warrant a place in a rock band.