Friday, July 12, 2024

9 Most Profitable Businesses to Start With Sh. 20,000

Starting a business is often a capital-intensive venture. Here are some of the most profitable businesses to start with 20k to 30k in Kenya.

Most Profitable Businesses and Businesses to Start with 20k:

Selling Mitumba Clothes

Many young people are turning to selling secondhand clothes. Business centres in towns or residential areas have shops or stalls selling these clothes. It is a favourite business idea as it generates profit quickly.

Co-Op post

The trick is starting small by selecting good and fast-moving items such as children’s clothes or official ladies’ clothes. Do your selection carefully to have a high chance of quickly turning over your stock. As a small business, never tie down your cash in stock.

You may choose to wash and iron the clothes to attract more value. Gikomba market is a good place to start. Many successful secondhand clothes dealers started there.

Decide on your routine such that you replenish your stock weekly. You can operate by either visiting your clients in their workplaces or homes. This will eliminate the need to pay rent for a shop or stall. You can wash, keep and iron your stock at home. If you decide to rent a stall, start small. Look for a strategically located place going for less than Sh10,000.


Freelance Printing

Printing of documents such as receipt books, invoice books, delivery books, wedding cards, business cards, brochures, funeral programs and any other documents used by businesses or individuals does not necessarily require you to own a printer or printing machine.

You can outsource these jobs and give your clients a higher quotation. Your main concentration will be on looking for clients who want documents printed. As usual, always start small and grow with the business as you learn the ropes.

RELATED: How to Start Your Own Business in 7 Easy Steps


Selling Cereals

We all eat cereals. You can model this business as a broker or middleman too. To start small and slowly get clients and grow your market, you can go to places like Nyamakima or Eastleigh in Nairobi and buy cereals wholesale then distribute to other sellers in residential areas or in areas out of town such as Ongata Rongai, Kitengela, Mlolongo or in Eastlands.

You may also choose to open up a small store to store your cereals or sell from. A small store will enable you to reduce rental costs.

Personal Lending

Personal lending can be profitable if you lend to friends, family, colleagues or acquaintances with an interest rate of say, 5% to 20%. I am sure you have friends or relatives who keep asking for money every now and then. Stop giving them handouts! You can turn their needs into a financial benefit.

Agree on a deadline and ensure that those who do not keep it pay a fine. Keep good records of those you have given money, the amounts, fees, contacts and due dates. Let them sign a form to acknowledge receipt and commit to paying back at a fee.

You can also lend to small business people. Since businesses are expected to make some money every day, you can lend for a week or a few days. This will reduce the rate of default and increase your returns. Visit the business and assess the stocks and expected returns before lending.


With parents getting busier by the day, small children are increasingly being left at home under the care of house help. A lot of parents are worried for the safety of their children as many house helps are known to abuse children left under their care.

Small businesses that cater to kids are hot moneymakers. Parents don’t have enough hours in the day to take care of every programmed event for their children.

Talk to parents with small children who do not go to school in your neighbourhood. Explain to them that you can look after their children well at a small fee. Target children between 1 year and 3 years. You do not need to start with a big place; you can use your house.

All you need to do is to buy secondhand toys, both hard and soft, to keep the children busy the whole day. Prepare to feed and wash them whenever necessary. If you have to, you can hire an assistant.

Ensure you agree with the parents on the exact time of dropping and picking the children, feeding, fees charged or any other special needs.

Cleaning Services

Since many businesses started outsourcing their cleaning services, many entrepreneurs have made good money cleaning offices and buildings. You too can join in this by setting up your cleaning services business.

Gideon Moi buys multi-billion company from Narendra Raval

This is surprisingly one of the easiest businesses to start. Depending on your set-up, you can buy some buckets, cleaning rags, detergent, brushes etc and look for clients who want their homes or offices cleaned.

Professionals such as lawyers, doctors, engineers or some businessmen may not employ cleaners in their offices. You can approach them and offer to clean their offices once a week at an agreed fee. You can also visit homes and offer to clean their carpets. With 4 or 5 clients, your week is fully covered.

Errand Service

Urbanization has made people busier than ever. Between working long hours, cooking more at home and juggling responsibilities, there’s a lot that gets left undone.

A service that runs errands (including dropping off dry cleaning, paying bills, shopping etc.) requires just a cell phone. Start small, do a good job and word of mouth will spread quickly.

Services such as renewal of driver’s licenses, and business permits, collecting and paying bills, shopping, passport applications etc require a lot of patience and time.

RELATED: TerryAnne Chebet: 10 businesses you can start with Sh10,000

With the majority of people busy and cannot stand in queues for hours, you can offer to do these on their behalf, at a fee of course. Pitch your idea to those who need the service and do a good job. In no time, word will spread about your timely and efficient service.

This business idea requires a high level of trust because some documents are very valuable. You can start with close friends and family to demonstrate and develop trust.

Errand’s service can be profitable if you work smart. Try and make friends with officers in government offices such as Kenya Revenue Authority, Huduma Centres, Sheria House, Kenya Power etc. This will help you offer speedy service.


If you are good in a certain subject or area, you can offer to teach others at a fee. Many people are willing to pay to learn talents such as music, piano, drawing, singing, hairdressing etc. If you are talented in any of these areas, you can make money by teaching others.

The beauty of this business idea is that you don’t need to set up and pay for a location or room. You can visit the client in their homes or offices to teach them. Your operating costs will therefore be minimal.

Event Organization

Events such as parties or meetings require a great deal of time and effort to plan and organize. You can offer to plan and organize such events at a fee.

Look out for parents with birthday parties for their kids, couples planning to wed, churches with fundraisers or special events, companies and organizations with business events such as product launches, parties, meetings etc.

Approach them and offer to take off their headache of planning and organizing such events at a fee. If it is a company or organization, you will need to have a thorough knowledge of their activities, products, market and other details.

Marketing your services will be your key task in the event organization business. Look for ways to advertise your event organization skills and network through family and friends. If you do a good job, word-of-mouth advertising will bring clients your way, therefore, strive to excel.

The above 9 most profitable businesses can easily be set up with between Sh. 20,000 and Sh. 30,000 or even less depending on your set-up. If you do not have access to a large capital base, I would recommend that you consider some of these small business ideas in Kenya.

Latest Stories


Loading comments...

Related Stories

error: Content is protected !!