He modified an old car into a convertible nicknamed Malcolm X, by literally disassembling it in Rwanda many years ago. Now he owns several multi-million-shilling convertibles. Clearly, Barry Ndengeye is not your average car enthusiast and neither is his wife, Samia.
The rides in their yard include a Rolls Royce, Maserati, Lamborghini, Hummer, Ferrari, Mercedes, Range Rover and a futuristic Tron bike. A Bugatti is on its way to Kenya.
The father of two started accumulating his fancy toys way back in Rwanda.
“I started as a teenager making a few coins as a fashion retailer buying, customising and selling second-hand clothes. I was also an artistes’ designer,” says the soft-spoken billionaire.
The 1994, Rwanda’s genocide became a turning point in his life when he was forced to leave his country, relocating to Kenya where he remained for three years before moving to Europe. In Europe, Barry embarked on his passion of entertainment.
He got into several businesses including renting and selling sound and public address systems. He also went into petroleum as well as gold and diamond business.
“While in Belgium, my wife and I expanded our businesses to other countries like Germany, Switzerland, Italy and Dubai,” says the Art and Design graduate from DRC.
Barry met his wife Samia, a private banker in wealth management, in 2006 while in Belgium. They relocated to Dubai where they have managed to do a lot of business with several members of the royal family among other billionaires in the world.
“We managed to open high-end clubs such as Billion Club in Belgium that has a capacity of 3,000 people, Afrodiziac Club (also in Belgium) that accommodates 1,000 people, B-CLUB, Kigali and B-CLUB DRC among others, which are currently doing well,” he says.
Barry works with numerous artistes across the continent thanks to his showbiz passion.
“The Rolls Royce Phantom (drop-head) was customised by Masonry from a Sheikh in Dubai’s royal family. Its interior is made of ostrich-skin, smooth piano wood and custom-made carbon fibre,” Barry notes.
After purchasing his other favourite ride, the green-wrapped Lamborghini Murcielago, he had to do some modifications, among them fitting it with carbon fibre.
His Range Rover’s makeover was done by Hamann who also customised his red Ferrari F430.
“I see the beauty of car through its uniqueness. Customising cars makes them unique,” he remarks.
Unfortunately, he has had his share of bad days. He once took his unique Mercedes S600 to a top garage for service, but the mechanics ended up spoiling the whole engine.
“I decided to fly in one of the renowned mechanics from Dubai, who services other luxurious cars for other billionaires in Africa, especially Nigeria,” he tells Pulse.
His wife and business partner, Samia who acts as a key advisor and administrator in their multiple businesses, prefers driving the Hummer H2 because of its unique transformation, comfort and masculinity on the road.