Top 10 Profitable Businesses To Start With 1k in Kenya

Last Updated on: 7th November 2023, 12:35 pm

Can your 1k help you start a profitable business in Kenya? Well, no more worries. There are profitable businesses to start with 1k in Kenya. 

This blog explains 10 profitable businesses to start with 1k in Kenya. So you can take the Hustler Fund and start a lucrative business. In the list, I have done three businesses I started with less than 1k. Keep reading to see how I did it.

Those who would like to venture into blogging can join my Blogging Master Course at a discount. It’s not 1k, though. 

The Blogging Mastery Course image

Profitable Businesses To Start with 1k In Kenya Today

Seeing how many youths are jobless in Kenya, I’m thrilled to show you businesses you can start with 1k. You will not sleep hungry again after reading through this blog post. 

We also have some other profitable side hustles you can start to make money.

1. Boiled Eggs 

I’m sure you’ve seen people hawking boiled eggs on streets and bus stops. Do you have any idea of the profit they make per day? 

Let’s do the maths. 

Depending on your location, you can get a crate of 30 eggs with at most 450. These crates can cost as low as 300 when the supply exceeds the demand.

You should also buy tomatoes and onions worth at most Ksh. 100. Working with the cost of 450 per crate, 100 for onion and tomatoes, and a transparent bucket worth Ksh.150. Anything else you need you already have in your house, say a sufuria, jiko/stove/gas, water, and salt. 

One boiled egg plus kachumbari costs Ksh. 30. Therefore, if you manage to sell one crate a day, you will sell at Ksh. 900 making a profit of at least 350. If you sell more than that, the profits increase. In addition, if your business thrives, you can buy a trolley and add samosas and smokies to your stock.

With 1k in Kenya, you can start selling boiled eggs, especially on busy streets. It’s something you can also do after your 8-5 job. 

Read also: Businesses you can start with 50k in Kenya.

2. Bottled Water

Bottled water is another profitable business to start with 1k in Kenya today. You can set up your business in bus parks and along highways. 

With 1k, you can buy a parcel of 500ml bottled water in wholesale shops. Depending on your location, a pack of 24pcs of 500ml bottled water costs between 350 and 400.

If you sell all 24 pcs at Ksh. 25, you will make a profit of at least Ksh. 200. Depending on how aggressive you are, you can sell 2 to three parcels a day. That’s a cool profit of Ksh.400 to 600 a day

3. Nail Technician (Mobile)

If you have been a traveller using Matatus, you usually see people painting nails at bus stops. Being a nail technician is a profitable business, with 1k in Kenya. 

You can visit a cosmetics shop and buy different nail paints and remover colours. This could not cost beyond Ksh.500. 

Mobile nail polish is among the  profitable businesses to start with 1k in Kenya today.

This is a business I have tried while on campus, and it paid for my upkeep. So, one day I took nail paint and applied it to my nails after my morning classes. Then an idea struck me. And being the entrepreneur I am, I started painting my campus mate’s nails immediately.

How much did I make on the first day, from 4 pm to 6 pm? I made Ksh. 400. And I turned that into a side hustle after classes. 

Therefore, you can start being a nail technician on busy streets, and I promise you are going to survive in these tough times in Kenya with your income.

4. Selling Viazi

People like spending money on these small things on the streets on their way from work. Viazis is a native Kenyan snack that people make with potatoes dipped in blended wheat flour.

To start selling viazi in your street, you need at least 1kg of wheat flour, 1 litre of cooking oil, and potatoes worth 250. Once you fry your viazi, you will sell each at Ksh. 5, and you can make a considerable profit by the end of the day.

5. Liquid soap selling

During these tough economic times, people are resolving to use cheaper items at home. And one of these affordable items is liquid soap detergent. Therefore, this is a lucrative business to start with 1k in Kenya.

If you have the skills, you can find a soap chemicals shop and buy materials for making 20 litres of soap which can cost about Ksh. 500. You can search for tutorials on YouTube and learn how to make the detergent if you don’t have the skills.

You will also need water and plastic bottles. Some people sell these bottles at Ksh. 2 per bottle. 

A 500ml bottle of this soap costs Ksh 25, and you can get around 50 pieces of high-quality detergent. That will leave you with sales of Ksh. 1250 and you will have a profit of about 800. 

You should hawk your soap in estates and shops, and you can always sell more than 50 pieces daily. Meaning you can also make more than Ksh. 1000 in profit per day. That will be at least 26,000 per month if you give yourself a leave of one day per week. 

I have sold these detergents for quite some time during my studies. Do I say I was a go-getter? Ooh, I still I’m!

You can accumulate savings to start a business with at least 50k in Kenya. Isn’t that a great way to start making money immediately?

6. Selling Cooked Groundnuts

Well, this is another business you can start with Ksh. 1k in Kenya today. There was a time during campus long holidays when I opted to do this business.

All I had was 1k. Therefore, I bought 3kgs of Jugu ( as we call it). At that time, a kg was retailing at Ksh. 130, so that was Ksh.390. I also bought packaging bags worth 100, candles for sealing, and a small jiko worth Ksh. 350 and charcoal worth 100. That way, my business was set. 

A plate of uncooked groundnuts

The target customers are retail shops and people who sell Miraa and Muguka (the Meru community can attest to this). I got double sales out of that stock and kept multiplying the income until I was investing Ksh.7k to get at least Ksh. 14k.

7. Hawking cooked food

If you know how to cook delicious food, you can start cooking food and hawk in the streets, especially in bus stages where people are in a hurry to get into hotels.

You can start with 1kg of wheat flour, cooking oil 1 litre, rice, 1/2 kg of beans/ndengu, tomatoes, onions, 3 small transparent buckets for supply, and charcoal. I’m assuming you have a Jiko and Sufurias. These items cannot cost you more than Ksh. 900.

Hawking cooked food can give you a daily profit of not less than Ksh.500, depending on how aggressive you are.

8. Be a Beba Beba

I’m sure you have seen people in busy markets offering beba beba services to shoppers. For instance, if you visit most supermarkets near you, you’ll find people offering to carry items for shoppers at a small fee, say Ksh. 50. 

You can get at least Ksh. 200 or more during busy days. Some people can also give you tips, hence closing your day with more money. You don’t need capital to start a beba beba business. Instead, you need to be strong. Therefore, stay fit and eat healthy before you head to work. 

9. Fetching water 

In the small town where I live, I see young men and women fetching water for people in businesses and estates. Depending on how far the well/borehole is, the carrying services range from Ksh.10- 15 per 20-litre jerrican. 

You can start by carrying one or two jerricans per trip and make at least Ksh. 200 per day. You can save money to buy a trolley or a wheelbarrow to ease and improve your work performance.

10. Be a Mama Fua

Mama Fua is a Kenyan native phrase describing the people, primarily women, who offer clothes-washing services in estates and homes. We all know that some people prefer one person who comes once or twice a week to wash their clothes and clean their houses.

You can take advantage of this business and market your services to your friends in your neighbourhood. If you have a smartphone, market your services on Whatsapp statuses and other social media platforms.

You can charge your client according to the quantity of clothes and how dirty they are. 

For instance, kids’ clothes are considered to be too dirty, and mama fuas charge higher for washing them. 

The Bottom Line: Profitable Businesses To Start With 1k In Kenya Today

To succeed in these top businesses, you need to be aggressive and a go-getter. Most people despise those who do these businesses, so you should develop a thick skin. 

No one will feed you and your family if you don’t work. Therefore, brace yourself and get out there and start that hustle.

I also have a list of other online side hustles you can start in Kenya. Some need capital, while others require you to invest the time to learn and implement what you learn.

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