Women Entrepreneurs Who Founded Businesses With Less Than Ksh10,000

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Catherine Muringo, Lindah Kiyeng and Anzani Kiti PHOTP/Courtesy

Unforeseen challenges such as job losses has taught Kenyan a lot, and how far money thought to be little for starting a business can go.

With the economic constraints brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become clearer to Kenyans that job security can be sometimes overrated.

For this matter, Kenyans have seen the need of getting into business, and no matter the starting capital, with the required effort towards the business, making it is a matter of time.

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In this article, WoK looks at women entrepreneurs who founded businesses with less than Ksh 10,000 capital.

Grace Wambere

Grace Wambere is the proprietor of a mitumba wholesale and retailing shop in Nairobi CBD known as Mitumba Chap Chap.

The IT graduate ventured into second-hand clothes business in 2013 while shopping for her newborn baby at the Gikomba market.

With an initial capital of Ksh 2,000, she bought some clothes which she sold online before acquiring enough capital to set up a physical shop in 2016.

In 2013 I was expecting and when I was shopping for my baby, I discovered there were nice things selling in lower prices that I can sell to people who cannot manage to access Gikomba,” Wambere said.

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Askah Nyakwara

Askah Nyakwara is the founder of Nyangorora Banana Processors, a venture that she started with Ksh 2,000 only.

Since its establishment, the processor has since benefited over 580 people and producing at least five banana products.

The company produces banana crisps, flour, baked banana bread, wine and fibre which trade under the brand ‘Ritoke’.

Askah also explained that they can also produce beer, soap and juice if they decide to expand their venture.

Joyce Waithira

Joyce Waithira runs various ventures including organic fertiliser production, interior decor shop, online shopping coaching and she is also a Youtuber.

The University of Eldoret graduate is the CEO of EcoRich Solutions, a firm that converts Nairobi’s waste into organic fertiliser.

The organic fertiliser business was incepted to help solve the challenge of waste management which keeps on getting worse with ballooning population.

Waithira noted that she began with a Ksh 6000 capital, and now, years later, her business has grown in leaps and bounds.

Catherine Muringo

Catherine Muringo runs Experience Mtumba Bales shop in Gikomba market and she sources her second-hand clothes directly from suppliers abroad.

She ventured into the mitumba business over nine years ago after her salon business collapsed.

The entrepreneur was devastated and feeling hopeless but was not about to give up. She used the Ksh 2,000 she was left with as capital for her mitumba business.

From the Ksh 2,000 stock, she was made Ksh 9,000 which she used to buy another bale. She met dealer who taught her about varieties of mitumba bales, making her business even more profitable.

Jackline Watahi

Jackline Watahi ventured into the chapati business to provide for her two children. Her idea was to set up a chapati kiosk but this could not work because of her limited finances.

She only had Ksh 430 which she used to buy ingredients and made 34 chapatis in her home kitchen.

According to the businesswoman, her profits are not less than Ksh 30,000 in profit monthly.

Easter Kojwang

Easter Kojwang is the founder of Eastnat, a business she started in August 2015 after being jobless for months.

The businesswoman quit her first job and realized employment was not for her when she took up another job.

Kojwang started her business with Ksh 9,000 as capital and it has grown to be a big enterprise that delivers honey worth millions of shillings to various businesses. 

Lindah Kiyeng

Lindah Jelegat Kiyeng founded her thriving multimillion public relations company with only KSh 10,000 capital.

She founded her business, Lindah Kiyeng Communications headquartered at Transnational Plaza in Nairobi, after working at a PR company where gained invaluable insights in the trade.

Their services include branding, press release distribution for companies, social media management and press conferences.

Jennifer Barasa

Jennifer Barasa is the founder of Top Image Africa Ltd, a below the line agency she started after leaving McCann Erickson in 1995.

She founded the business with Ksh 30 as starting capital.

The company first began in her living room before she turned it into a big brand with tentacles spread across Africa.

In a previous interview with KTN, she revealed that the company employs 4,000 people across Africa with over half of this being permanent employees. 

Anzazi Kiti

Anzazi Kiti is the founder of Taste Afrique, a company that manufactures, distributes and sells natural food seasoning products.

She started the business with Ksh 4,800 capital.

The unique name for her spices was inspired by both Swahili and her native language. The name Chibundiro is derived from bunda in Swahili which means grinding.

Maggie Wakori

Maggie Wakori is the owner of a shoe company dubbed, Sidmar Premium Rubbers who import shoes, mostly from China and sell to different wholesalers and retailers.

In 2017, her husband got a job in China, something that would prove to be a great opportunity for the family.

Having a special love for shoes, her husband brought them good quality rubber shoes whenever he visited his family.

This sparked in her the interest to get into business. She began buying them from a supplier and hawking them to friends and to other people through referrals.

The shoes sold very fast and her husband sent her more stock from China. Her initial starting capital was Ksh 5,000.

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