Garbage Collection stopped being a thing of the government once the service was devolved in Kenya.
Since then, private entities have come in to offer the service to towns and estates alike.
With those changes, many Kenyans have stepped forward to take up the opportunity and exploit the market gap.
Do you know what all that has resulted in?
The Garbage Collection Business has grown into a very popular venture and is now, among the most profitable businesses in Kenya in 2024.
Remember, the garbage collection business is still not that overcrowded and so many market gaps are still available to exploit.
I know you are now dying to have your own Garbage Collection Company launched tomorrow.
But give that thought a break.
Let’s first discuss what really is required of you, how much capital is required, where best to locate your business, and just how profitable the venture can be, among other important issues in the business.
What’s the best location for a garbage collection business in Kenya?
For your garbage collection business, of course, you need to base your operations on places where there is so much garbage to collect.
Rural areas are most of the time so clean and green that you can almost find nothing to call garbage to collect. Urban areas and major towns, however, have the garbage collection burden and that is where to thrive.
Identify certain estates around town, which are well populated and occupied so that there will be reasonable garbage to collect every week, month, or even for years.
Once you have done this you then have your location right. Keep expanding and covering more estates and homes.
Need an office?
Maybe as you grow, for bookings and any other ways in which you may be of help to your existing and new clients. This can be located in a strategic place in town like along a busy street or close to estates and homes.
What really is expected of you if you will make a dime out of this lucrative Garbage Collection Business? Below are some of the requirements:-
- Carry out market research – go around and see where your services will be of much help. Estates and homes where county government garbage collectors never reach or are inconsistent are the best for you.
- Agree with each house on collection fee – in the areas you have identified, then if really they need your services, agree with them on the fee they will be paying say monthly and that will be your first milestone in success. Do not overcharge because of competition or undercharge to a level where you won’t be making anything.
- Identify a truck you can hire – you may not need to buy your own truck but if you got the cash then why not. So if there is a truck you can hire only for the days you need it as you grow your business then that will cut on initial costs.
- Identify reliable people you can hire – you may not need permanent employees. Identify some people you can mobilize when you need them on a particular day of work and that will be okay.
Acquire the relevant licenses as follows:
- County Council Single Business Permit – this costs about Ksh.5,000 – Ksh.10,000 per year depending on your county. Enquire there as you get the permit from the town zoning department on the practicality and how you can go about garbage collection in the area you intend to.
- NEMA License – National Environmental Management Authority will need to issue you a Garbage Collector’s License and to do so, you may be required to show the logbook to the truck you will be using which should be enclosed.
- Approval by authorities – you can’t just invade the area to begin collecting garbage when the community leaders like the chief, assistant chief, nyumba Kumi leaders are not aware. You need to inform them and get their approval and support. This is all for security purposes in case of anything.
- Approval by landlords – Meet the landlord or caretaker of every estate or residential area you identified during your market research and talk to them about your services. They will help mobilize tenants to put their garbage in a particular place on the scheduled days and collect the fees from the tenants as they collect rent.
- Ensure every house has Garbage bins and bags – you can provide these to the tenants who do not have them to put their garbage, at a retail price. This will make your collection easy on the day of work.
- Identify a dumping site or Recycling site – talk to the county government so you can be dumping your garbage in one of their recycling sites. If you can make your recycling site then why not.
- Start your business and adhere to your agreements with your clients. Offer services as agreed and be reliable as you expand your business.
How much capital do you need to start a garbage collection business in Kenya?
You must be wondering just how much is enough to begin this business.
- Licensing – Ksh.10,000
- Truck hire – Ksh.5,000
- Employees – Ksh.5,000
You can see that with as low as Ksh.20,000 you are already in business. If you have enough money you can do it on a large scale and you will need much more though.
How profitable is this kind of business?
In an estate that is so populous and occupied, let’s say it has 100 tenants and each contributes Ksh.150.
That makes Ksh.15,000 per estate.
Go to 10 estates of such nature and you already have Ksh.150,000. Pay your employees and the truck and you have the difference all to yourself.