Profitable Business To Start with Small Capital in Kenya


Each of the aspiring entrepreneurs in Kenya would want to invest money in a profitable business that would make them millionaires over a short period of time, but the business must require small capital. It’s a norm that the more money you inject into a profitable business, the more revenue it generates. However, most Kenyans are not rich, so they can only afford to start small and rise with time. It’s for this reason that we list tens of businesses to start with small capital that will eventually generate decent profits.

  • Butchery business

Butchery business is a profitable business and easy to manage. With a capital of Ksh 150,000, you’ll comfortably start a butchery. In towns like Nairobi, Mombasa, Machakos, Kajiado, Kisumu and Nakuru, most people purchase goat or beef meat almost daily. These are the best places to set up butchery business.

The hardest part is to get a license, which will cost Ksh10,000 to Ksh25,000 per year, rent and the course of meat. However, if you live in Nairobi, Nakuru or Eldoret, getting meat to sell is easy—you just make an order and it’s delivered.

A busy butchery will generate profits in the range of Ksh 2,000 and Ksh 10,000 per day. After expenses, you’ll earn more than Ksh50,000 every month.

  • Wines and Spirits wholesale business

If you have enough cash, at least Ksh 2 million, start selling wines and spirits to retailers. This is one business that will turn a beggar into a millionaire. A good stock will generate profits not less than Ksh 10,000 per month. There are even some wholesalers who earn more than Ksh 1 million every month from selling wines and spirits.

Wines and spirits business is not prone to losses because the product isn’t perishable.

  • Cake baking business

Another business I will highly encourage you to start is cake baking. In the recent past, most people have dropped bread for cakes. If you go to supermarkets, you’ll realize that cakes take much space than breads because they are more preferred nowadays. When KDF cakes were introduced in Kenya about 3 years ago, that was when people started noticing that cake baking are profitable. The owner revealed that he was earning Ksh50,000 per day and his profits were rising steadily over time.

To purchase equipment, you require Ksh150,000 to Ksh500,000. In total, a capital of about Ksh 400,000 is needed. But once the business is set to run, you’ll get orders from all corners. The only secret of succeeding is to bake good cakes.

If you get orders from supermarkets, events like weddings and birthdays, you will generate not less than Ksh5,000 per day. But for you to realize profits, your business must be strategically positioned and also have heavy presence online.

  • Chemist business

If there is a business that the owner sets any price they wish, it’s chemist business. You can buy a tablet at Ksh 20 and sell at Ksh200.The prices are not regulated.

Starting a chemist costs at least Ksh 500,000. But one obstacle is that you must be a registered nurse or health practitioner for you to run this kind of business. The good thing is,you can partner with someone with the certificate and successfully run the business.

If you set the business in Nairobi, Mombasa or Kisumu, your monthly profits will be more than Ksh100,000. I know a couple of friends running chemist business in Nairobi CBD and are making more than Ksh1 million every month.

  • Blogging

The most successful bloggers are university graduates who are passionate about providing knowledge to their audience. A number of them are forced to become bloggers because they are unable to secure white collar jobs.

The capital required for one to start a blog in Kenya is Ksh5,000 to Ksh 30,000.First,you need to register a domain,then create a website,buy hosting space and start blogging.If you need all this,click on this link to visit Kenya Website Experts,they are the best in domain registration,web hosting and web design.

Once the blog is ready, start developing useful content. You will earn money from AdSense, MGID, Content.Ad, affiliate marketing and selling products online.

Bloggers like Cyprian Nyakundi, Robert Alai, Majani of Ghafla earn more than Ksh300,000 per month. The good thing about blogging is that capital required is small and expenses are meagre but the income is high. With 1 million monthly page views, a blogger can earn as high as Ksh 200,000

There are no restrictions for becoming a blogger, any graduate or school dropout is allowed to venture into this career.

  • MPESA and Agency banking business

MPESA business is somehow flooded but it’s still one of the best businesses to start in Kenya with small capital. You can start with MPESA business, then later incorporate Equity and Cooperative agency business. The seed capital is between Ksh 100,000 and Ksh300,000.

The major challenge is to get an MPESA line from Safaricom and the float to start the business with. The float is usually from Ksh50,000.

In a highly populated business where you get an average of 50-1000 customers per day,you’ll earn at least Ksh1,500 daily in profits. Those combining MPESA and agency banking business earn more than those with just MPESA business.

  • Grocery

Grocery business is where you sell vegetables and fruits and sometimes cereals. The most ideal towns to do grocery business are, Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Nakuru and Eastern region. This is a low budget business but with the potential of returning daily profits of above Ksh2,000. The capital required range between Ksh 50,000 and Ksh 300,000.

  • Web hosting business

You don’t have to secure a license to start web hosting business, all you need is a capital of Ksh20,000 and Ksh 70,000 to buy reseller hosting plans and start hosting your clients. Bluehost, Kenya Website Experts and HostPinnacle have reseller packages for upcoming entrepreneurs.

If you are a blogger or web designer, web hosting is another side hustle you can join. Once you have created a website for your client, you will start hosting them and they pay monthly or annually. Below are the links to companies offering web hosting reseller services to Kenyan entrepreneurs;

Kenya Website Experts(Click here to visit website)

Bluehost(Click here to visit website)

A2 Hosting(Click here to visit website)

HostPinnacle Kenya(Click here to visit website)

  • Selling samosa, sausages, smokies and boiled eggs

For those with a capital of Ksh 5,000 and Ksh30,000, selling smokies, sausages, samosa and boiled eggs will be an ideal business. One smokie will cost Ksh10 but it will generate profit of Ksh 5. Assuming you sell 100 smokies,100 boiled eggs and 100 sausages per day, you’ll earn an average of Ksh1,500 daily.

You should not despise this kind of business, it might pay your rent and other bills even if you live within Nairobi. In the city, you need just Ksh20,000 per month to survive—smokie and samosa business will generate more than that. Remember that a primary school teacher earns less than Ksh20,000 per month and they survive with that salary.

  • Tent and chairs for hire

If you have never gone to funerals and weddings, then you haven’t known how tent and chair hiring business is profitable. In a normal funderal,500 people attend, that means 500 chairs are needed. One chair costs Ksh10, meaning that you will make Ksh5,000 by letting out 500 chairs. Chairs must be accompanied with a tent which goes for Ksh3,000 to Ksh10,000 per day.

In a month, you will earn not less than Ksh 50,000 from this business.

Buying one chair will cost Ksh 500.If you buy 1,000 chairs, it means you’ll spend Ksh500,000. You will recover the capital within 6 months.

  • Outdoor catering business

Few years back, outdoor catering business were only prominent in major cities which is not the case anymore. Nowadays, when there is a big event in the village, they call someone with catering equipment who can cook and serve visitors. The business has become extremely popular.

As an entrepreneur, all you need is a capital of Ksh50,000 to Ksh150,000 to start. Each catering event you attend will generate Ksh 10,000 to Ksh 50,000. In a month, if you attend 10 catering events, you’ll make over Ksh100,000.

The only expenses you incur are transport costs and the daily wages you pay your workers.

  • CV and cover letter writing

Instead of just idling at home with your degree and knowledge of Microsoft Word, start writing CVs and cover letters to your fellow graduates. This business works well for people who advertise the skills in social media, especially LinkedIn and Facebook. If you would create a blog to advertise jobs as well as market your skills, the better.

You need zero capital to start this kind of business when you own a smartphone and a laptop. But if you need a blog, you’ll require at least Ksh10,000 for domain registration and web hosting.

To design one CV, it will cost your client more than Ksh1,000. One cover letter costs Ksh500 and above. In a month, you need less than 100 clients to earn more than Ksh100,000.

  • Shoe shining

When you see those old wazees doing shoe shining on the streets, what comes to your mind? Of course you may take them as old, desperate people trying to earn a living by doing low paying jobs. But I can confirm to you today that shoe shining is a well-paying business. That man doing the job will get 100 customers per day and make more than Ksh 10,000.

Nairobi is one of the best places to set up the business. You can decide to go it alone or employ people to work for you.

Capital required range between Ksh10,000 and Ksh 100,000 depending on the size of the business.

  • Taxi business(Uber)

The traditional way of doing tax business is not fashionable anymore. Since the coming of Uber, Bolt, Wasili and Taxify, the traditional taxi business has been heavily impacted on negatively. The good thing about Uber business is that your driver will not steal from you because the company’s software will have all the payment and operational details.

You need a capital of Ksh300,000 to Ksh600,000 to start the business, then register with Uber and employ a driver. The company will pay you Ksh 60,000 to Ksh 80,000 every month as profits.

There are people owning more than one taxi and make more than Ksh150,000 monthly.

Uber business will always generate profits.

  • Restaurant

Restaurant business is also a highly profitable business but it need efficient management strategies. The owner should also focus on where there is enough human traffic.

If you are going to start the business near a school, focus more on fast foods like chips and chicken.

Any business that is related to food is extremely profitable.

A restaurant of a sitting capacity of 10 people will generate not less than Ksh2,000 per day. In case you set one in Nairobi CBD, you must make over Ksh500,000 every month, that’s after paying workers and other expenses.

The capital required for restaurant business depends on the county you are setting up the business and the size of the business. Generally, you need more than Ksh150,000 to start restaurant business in Kenya.

One thing you should know is that for the business to run smoothly, the owner should closely monitor it. If possible, install CCTV cameras which you can use to verify with the income your workers report.

  • Salon business

Salon business require a capital of Ksh 100,000 to Ksh 500,000. Buying blow dry equipment will take a large proportion of the money. Rent and license fee will also cost more than Ksh40,000. Once you set up the business and get good people to work for you, the profits will be amazing.

Posh areas like Runda, Karen, Kilimani and Kileleshwa have salons which charge up to Ksh20,000 per head.

When owning a salon, you must be there physically to count the number of customers attended to, otherwise you’ll register losses when in the real sense the business is making profits. If you won’t afford time to supervise, then employ someone you trust to oversee the workers.

  • Hawking

Hawking is the last resort to many Kenyans. This comes when someone is desperate to get money but don’t have connections to secure white collar some cases, you will find someone has been sacked and they have bills to pay. The advantage of hawking is that one can start the business with as little as Ksh 1,000. Just go to Gikomba, buy 10 shirts and start hawking around the streets—you must get some customers.

It’s quite interesting that there are some millionaires who started like hawkers and ended up owning multi-million enterprises.

  • Tomato/watermelon/cabbage farming

Some of the most profitable crops to grow are tomatoes, watermelon and cabbages. Any farmer with more than one acre will generate over Ksh1 million every year from those fruits. Watermelon is increasingly becoming popular among Kenyans in urban areas.

The capital required range between Ksh 50,000 and Ksh 100,000 and estimated profits are from Ksh 500,000 per year. It takes three to 5 months for cabbages to be sold. Watermelon take more than 6 months from the time they are planted to the time they are harvested.

Instead of planting tea or maize, it’s better for you to plant either cabbages, tomatoes or watermelon. In case you own more than two acres, incorporate avocado and mangoes.

  • Cosmetics shop

Another business you should not ignore is the cosmetics shop. On this earth, cosmetics business is ranked among top 5 most profitable businesses.

While starting this business, ensure that it’s strategically positioned especially in areas where there are many salons. With good traffic flow, you will earn more than Ksh70,000 monthly.

Cosmetics business require a capital of at least Ksh100,000.

  • Hardware

Hardware business will require a capital of more than Ksh 2 million, but it’s one of the best to launch in Kenya. Construction is ongoing almost in every country which require materials. Few people would travel from as far as Kisii to Nairobi to look for materials like iron sheets and cement.

It’s hard to register losses from hardware business.

  • Photocopy, printing and scanning machines near schools

If you live near schools, please start the business of photocopying and printing documents. Since most universities and colleges don’t run such businesses, it will be a great opportunity for you to earn money from the business.

A powerful printer, scanner and photocopy machine will jointly cost less than Ksh100,000. If you set it up in busy universities like KU, Maseno, Kisii and MKU, you’ll make a lot of money.

  • Electronics shop/online shop

You can also set up online electronics shop where you sell TVs, laptops and mobile can even become an agent of Jumia and start selling to earn from their affiliate program.Jumia offers cheap prices during black Fridays.Click on this link to learn more about Jumia products and offers

I guess one of the businesses above will bring good returns.All the best!


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