How to Start a Distilled Water Vending ATM Business in Kenya

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Distilled water vending machines are a hot commodity in Kenya right now, and for a good reason. Not only do they provide a convenient way to get your drink of choice on the go, but they can also be a profitable business if you decided to put some money into it. In this article, we’ll show you how to start and operate a distilled water vending machine business in Kenya.

What is a Water Vending ATM?

Distilled water vending machines (WVM) are machines used to distill and sell water in different litter offerings. They are a perfect way to provide safe, healthy, and affordable drinking water to people in need.

Water vending machines are simple to set up and operate, making them a great option for new entrepreneurs who want to help people get clean drinking water and make money while serving humanity.


As you continue to read this post you will learn how to start a water vending business in any part of the country together with a cost breakdown for setting up such a business.

Why is The Water Vending ATM Business Popular in Nairobi?

Distilled water vending machines are becoming increasingly popular in Kenya because they provide a cheaper option for getting distilled water for home use.

Water fetched from these machines is seen as a healthier option than traditional soft drinks and a cheaper option than alternative brands sold in supermarkets.

The vending machines dispense purified water directly into the customer’s cup, or bottle eliminating the cost of packaging which if you ask me, makes water sold at supermarkets more expensive.

For example, if you go to buy water at a water vending kiosk, you will only pay Ksh. 5 per litter. This means that buying 20 liters will cost you Ksh. 100 if you have your water bottle.

The same amount of water will cost you KSh.1,590.00 if you go for the Keringet brand at the local supermarkets.

It needs no explaining that anyone who wants to save over Ksh. 1,300 every time they buy drinking water will want to buy water at the ATMs. Plus, they are easily accessible in almost all the estates in Kenya.

Is Water Vending ATM Business Profitable?

Yes, the water vending ATM business is still profitable in Kenya but before you invest in it, it is important to do your research and determine if this is the right business for you.

If there is fair competition in the area you want to set up in and if there is enough population to buy from you amidst the competition, go ahead and join the wagon.

A few things to note though, the location of your business matters but the more prime it is, the more expensive it will be.

The type of machine you purchase will also determine how much you lose in maintenance costs. You can avoid high maintenance costs by buying machines that are commonly used in Kenya. Don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Use what everyone else uses.

Last but not least, whether or not you will have an attendant will also determine how much of your profits go to overhead costs.

So, be wise and do thorough research if your main objective of starting this business is to make profits.

What’s The Cost of Water Per Litter at Water Vending ATMs?

As I had mentioned earlier, retail vendors charge Ksh. 5 per liter of distilled water. This means that they are getting it at a lower price from county governments and even with the value addition, the cost is still manageable.

Note: – The Ksh. 5 is only for water and the client has to bring a container to fetch.

If they don’t have their own container, charge them Ksh. 200 extra for a 10 litter bottle and 400 for a 20 litter bottle. The light ones.

How to Start a Distilled Water Vending ATM Business in Kenya.

Though we have already touched on a couple of things that you need to know when starting a water vending kiosk, there are still many things you need to know if you want to start a distilled water vending machine business in Kenya.

Here’s the step-by-step guide to everything you need to do to start and become successful with the water vending ATM business in 2022.

1). Do Market Research. Talk to Existing Water Vending Business Owners.

The first thing that you must always do when starting a business, water vending ATM or not is market research to find out what people in your area want and need; if they have a problem, and how your business can fix the problem.

In the case of a water vending ATM business, you can talk to existing water vending business owners to get a good idea of what it takes to be successful in this industry.

If you don’t find existing owners willing to hold your hand through the baby steps, go directly to water vending machine wholesalers and pick their brains on the business.

They might have some ideas that can help you start with success.

2). Write a Business Plan For Your Water Vending ATM Business.

After you have done your research on these water vending ATM businesses and you are convinced that it is good for you, you will need to create a business plan.

A business plan is a document that outlines your goals for the business and how you plan on achieving them.

Your business plan should include information about your product, your target market, your financial analysis, and your marketing plans.

You also need to account for taxes, insurance, and other costs associated with running your business.

If you create a quality business plan, it will help you to understand your goals and make the necessary adjustments if needed.

If you have any questions about creating a business plan or any other aspects of starting a distilled water vending business in Kenya, don’t hesitate to contact SASET Ltd. They are the company that deals with Salad/Cooking oil/Milk/Water ATMs | Water Purifiers and Water Stations in Kenya.

3). Register a Business Name for Your Water Vending ATM Business

Do you have a business plan ready?

Next, you will need to register a business name that you intend to use for your business. You can do it in the comfort of your home on eCitizen or go to the cyber to be helped.

And why is this important you ask? It is important because the eCitizen business registration service also helps with searches to help you find out if the name that you have in mind is already in use by another business in Kenya.

But that’s not all, business registration will ensure that the name you have chosen for your business is reserved for you and that a PIN certificate is created for your business instantly.

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You will need both a business name certificate or company incorporation certificate together with the PIN for your business to open a bank account and to open a lipa na Mpesa till.

4). Find The Perfect Location for Your Water Vending Business

Did you manage to go past the business name registration process? Now you are one step closer to opening your business. But what’s the best place to set up?

A high-traffic area? Of course! You want to locate your business in an area where people are likely to visit on a regular basis.

Or, in a building that’s on the main road where motorists are likely to spot your business when driving around. If you can though, make sure it is closer or within an estate. This will help you offer delivery and with door to door marketing.

5). Source Water Vending ATMs Either Locally or Internationally.

Once you have found the perfect location for your business, you need to decide what type of vending machine you want to use.

There are a number of different types of water vending machines available, but you only want to use the ones that are already popular locally.

This helps during maintenance as local engineers are already familiar with them. Plus, you can easily find spares for popular ATM machines.

6). Set Up and Open Your Doors For Business.

Finally, can open your doors for business. But, also prepare yourself for the inevitable challenges that will come with running a distilled water vending business in Kenya.

If you bypassed the business registration and licensing process, you may find yourself on the wrong side of the law quite so often as government agencies and the county government where you are operating will be doing inspections.

Before you open your door for business, make sure that you have all the necessary documents and paperwork ready in case something goes wrong.

7). Brand Every Bottle of Water Leaving Your Store

Have I already mentioned that you’ll need to brand your store? Well, that’s part of the marketing efforts that you will need to put in to ensure that your business is visible to everyone. This will not help set you apart from other sellers of bottled water, but it will put you on the map for this kind of business.

Finally, you’ll need to make sure that every time you get a client, you brand their bottles before they leave the store.

This will help keep your business in their minds plus, they can also call you with the contacts on your branding for water delivery.


Starting a distilled water vending business in Kenya can be a very lucrative venture, as the country is plagued by the high cost of distilled water at the supermarket.

Distilled water vending ATM machines are easily accessible, easy to set up and operate, and customers are always readily available.

If you want case-specific examples of how the business is done in the estate near you, I suggest you talk to existing business owners and ask all the questions you have regarding this business. Success.

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