Martin Mutai: Hawker Who Established Third Largest Textile Business In Meru With Ksh10,000

Martin Mutai: Hawker Who Established Third Largest Textile Business In Meru With Ksh10,000
Collage image of Martin Mutai. |Courtesy| The Standard|

Martin Mutai is the founder and owner of Mutex General Supplies Limited, a textile business located opposite Consolata Hospital at the heart of Nkubu Town in Meru County. It is the third-largest business of its kind in the county.

The 33-year-old criminology graduate ventured into selling clothes, veering off his profession, before later establishing his fashion house.

In a 2021 interview with the Standard, Mutai revealed that he was supported by his mother who spared the little she had to fund his new venture. He invested a paltry Ksh10,000 into the company and has seen it grow into its current stature.

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Mutex General Supplies Ltd tailors a variety of clothing including; T-shirts, tracksuits, dust coats, pullovers, corporate shirts, jumpers, school uniforms and other unique apparel.

The Kanyakine Boys High School alumni noted that he decided to pursue other life options after finding it difficult to get a job in his profession. He, however, said that he has no regrets whatsoever.

“At the beginning, I started hawking but later my mother gave me the little cash she had to start me off with a materials shop at Marigiti stalls at Nkubu town,” he was quoted as saying.

Mutai stated that he saved every shilling he could spare since he knew that the market and demand for clothes will always be there and thus the textile industry made perfect sense to him.

The company boasts a workforce of over 15 employees and produces clothing sold to Meru, Isiolo, Tharaka Nithi, and other towns across the region.

“I had 25 employees, but we were forced to lay off 10 of them in the wake of Covid-19,” he said.

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The father of two serves as the company’s managing director and spends most of his time at the factory. He notes that the ever-growing population creates a huge demand for textiles in the country and, therefore, mandates players in the field to satisfy consumer needs.

“We are opening shops in other towns soon. We decided to integrate our trading company with a manufacturing entity so that it would be more efficient to meet our customer’s needs,” Mutai said at the time.

Mutex General Supplies Ltd manufactures clothes for all ages, shapes and sizes, and Mutai notes that he wants to grow the company into a national and regional brand.

Though 33 years of age, Mutai notes that he has vast experience in the field, having been a hawker, a tailor, and now a textile factory owner.

“There are experienced experts in tailoring and other processes. But sometimes we experience a shortage in fundis, because many of them are alcoholics, but we took steps and solved the problem,” he said.

Trading in a highly competitive industry, Mutai notes that they had to come up with a strategy to get ahead of the competition.

“We make school uniforms look more interesting and creative, so that students can use them as their unique form of expression. We also make unique corporate uniforms which are both eye-catching and functional, so that workers feel good wearing them,” he said.

His business is rebounding from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and Mutai hopes to grow the company exponentially and recruit an even bigger workforce.

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