Worst Business To Start in Kenya


Starting a business in Kenya is all fun until you realize that you are running the worst business ever. Before starting any kind of business, conduct thorough research to determine whether it will succeed or not. Every industry has successful people, but that does not mean that you’ll also be successful. Some entrepreneurs use orthodox means to get successful, if you follow them blindly, you’ll fall into a ditch without a point of return.

Here is a list of worst businesses to do in Kenya

  • Running a football academy

You might want to replicate football academies in Europe, but you’ll face the shock of your lifetime. The football standards in Kenya are low, so low that no external club will be interested in academy players. You will use your funds to finance the academy but at the end of the day gain nothing. Even our government offers limited support for football—nobody will recognize your efforts.

Clubs like Wazito FC and Sofapaka are struggling to remain afloat, already Wazito FC owner is dejected and ready to give up because the club does not offer value for money.

  • Insurance company

If you are planning to start an insurance company, be ready to lose money to underwriters who collude with motor vehicle owners to steal from you. Even running a medical cover program will be extremely difficult because hospitals will exaggerate prices. It has even become difficult for IRA to monitor fraud in this sector.

Due to the high level of fraud in the industry, most companies are posting losses annually.

  • Matatu business

The only way to succeed in matatu business is when you are the conductor. Matatu business is hard to manage, especially when you employ people you can’t trust. Police will eat from the matatu, conductors and drivers will also eat, at the end of the day you’ll go at a loss. You’ll buy a matatu for Ksh1.5 million but in three years, you only make Ksh 800,000. The conductor will save enough to buy his own matatu and quit the job when your vehicle is old and not useful anymore.

  • Running a TV station

You may think that running a TV station is easy, just from the way the likes of Citizen TV are being managed. One thing you should be reminded is that the owners of Citizen TV, K24, KTN and NTV are also the owners of Kenya. These guys take all the adverts in the industry. It’s extremely hard for a little known Kenyan to start a TV station and become successful.

  • Running a supermarket

Nakumatt collapsed, Tuskys is about to collapse, Uchumi collapsed, Ukwala collapsed and several other supermarkets. These were giant supermarkets nobody expected to collapse, but they went under. Running a supermarket in Kenya is not easy, your workers will steal from you until you surrender.

  • Operating a betting company

Sportpesa, Betin and Betpawa are some of the popular betting companies that were chased from Kenya in 2019.Before then, running a betting company was the most profitable business in Kenya. Politicians realized that there is money in football betting, they introduced punitive taxes which forced many companies to shut down.

If you are planning to start a betting site in Kenya, you better shelve the plans until further notice—probably 2023 when the current regime would have retired.

  • Boutique Business

Boutique business is only good when your clothes are cheap, but since you will pay rent for your premise and experience less customer traffic, your profit margins won’t be high. It’s only during festive season that you can make decent sales.

To make matters worse, Kenyans prefer Mitumba clothes over clothes sold in boutique shops.

Out of 100 people operating boutique shops, only 5 can be successful.

  • Cyber Café

About 10 years ago, cyber café business was highly marketable but with the introduction of smartphones, this business became obsolete.

Instead of setting a Cyber Café, it’s better you start a PlayStation business because it’s very profitable.

  • E-Commerce business

There are almost 30 e-commerce companies in Kenya but most of them are struggling, even Jumia is not doing well. This type of business may be successful in USA, Europe and Asia but not in Africa. Most Africans love to buy from supermarkets and shops, they are not patient enough to wait for the products to be delivered to their homes. Someone opts to commute to town to purchase the same item they spotted in an online shop because it’s more convenient than waiting for the same from an online shop.

  • Offline Taxi business

Unless you join online taxi companies like Uber and Texify, you won’t manage to make any money with your card. The taxi Apps have taken over the industry and now it’s like taxi business is owned by those companies. The sad thing is that even the profits you’ll make are controlled by the Apps.

Don’t dare start offline taxi business on your own—you won’t succeed.

  • Shylock business

Shylock business is not for the faint hearted. This kind of business does not involve any collateral, in most cases it’s through the word of mouth. Most people doing this kind of business are at a risk of losing their money or life.

  • Political blogging

Blogging about politics will put you in danger—you can be killed. Blogging is profitable, making over Ksh1 million per month is possible, but when you decide to write about politics, you won’t live in peace. The likes of Alai and Cyprian Nyakundi are facing it rough because of the route they took. Bogonko Bosire disappeared forever because he was involved in matters of politics.

If you want peace as a blogger, focus on less sensitive topics like education, business and gadgets. To create a blog, you need a capital of about Ksh10,000.First,register a domain name and buy hosting space,click here to acquire hosting space

  • Doing Business with County Governments

You might be happy to win a tender from a County Government and get promised of millions of money, but the excitement will be short lived. Counties rarely pay supplies and if they pay, they do so late. Never sacrifice your resources and time to deliver products to counties—most of them won’t pay.