How to Start a Profitable Mitumba Business In Kenya

How to Start a Profitable Mitumba Business In Kenya

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Would You Like To Start a Profitable Mitumba Business In Kenya, Here is a Step By Step Mitumba Business Guide On How To Start a Successful Mitumba Business In Kenya?

Mitumba groups abound in estates, in shopping centers, in open-air markets, in city center stalls, and even via the roadside. You can start a mitumba business in Kenya with any amount of cash but to make it profitable, you want staying power and resilience.

Profits don’t come easy except you put in long hours waiting for clients or looking for the right products. There can be days when you stroll again domestic tired and hungry having made nothing. On other days, it could be a sleek hop like a bunny glad about the bulge on your wallet. Here’s a comprehensive guide on a way to begin a mitumba business in Kenya.

Mitumba Grading.

When exporters buy mitumba from charities in various European countries, they grade each item counting on its appeal. Hence, when the bales reach the port, they’re in various categories locally referred to as bales.

When you approach mitumba suppliers, expect terms like:

Crème bale

The items during this bale are new, never worn. Most of the things during this bale should have the shop labels on them. Probably, someone bought an item, didn’t wear it, and dropped it at a charity pick-up point. Crème bales are expensive. A crème bale may cost the maximum amount as KSh50, 000.

Grade 1 (Grade A)

The items have seen a couple of washes but they’re still wearable. Grade 1 bale is cheaper than Crème.

Grade 2 (Grade B)

The previous owner wore the things severally in order that they aren’t as pleasing as a Grade 1 bale. Grade 2 is cheaper. Hence, Grade 2 is suitable for an open-air marketplace because the typical price of mitumba in such markets is about KSh100, so you won’t incur a loss.

Mitumba bale prices range from KSh1,000 to KSh50,000. the quantity depends on the country of origin, the grade, the wholesaler’s margin of profit, and therefore the item. as an example, a Grade 1 bale of trench coats cost about KSh8,000 to KSh9,000, and it’s about 40 to 50 pieces.

One school of thought alleges that supplies from some countries have better quality than others. Other sellers claim the country of origin affects the dimensions. Hence, such mitumba traders only buy bales shipped from Canada, US, or America saying such bales have larger sizes going by the physical traits of the population in those regions. There’s another group of traders who only buy China bales because they’re cheaper.

Is a Bale more Profitable than Selecting Pieces Randomly?

In each bale, there are three sorts of items. There are pieces that look almost new, and that they haven’t any defects in the least. The mitumba industry calls such items a camera. There also are pieces that are slightly used and aren’t as appealing because of the camera pieces.

The third variety during a bale is items with some defects like missing buttons or they need to be been worn severally in order that they aren’t as bright because of the other two types. This doesn’t mean they’re wiped out. The industry refers to such items as fagia.

Fagia consolidates all remaining stock after a day/week’s sale. It denies a reseller the prerogative to pick what finishes up within the bag. for instance, if a seller’s fagia comes from several bales of women tops and therefore the price is KSh20, when a reseller buys 100 pieces, the vendor picks 50 pieces randomly from the pile and multiplies by 20.

A bale is more profitable because you get a refund as soon as you sell all the camera pieces. Additionally, with a bale you sell to both customers and resellers. A bale allows you to explore various markets. for instance, sell the simplest of your stock from a store and therefore the least attractive of the things from a substitute an area council market.

On the opposite hand, bales are unpredictable. the sole one that knows what’s in them is that the guy who packaged them overseas. Hence, you would possibly get a variety of defective or unappealing items in each package. For that reason, select a couple of items from various sellers whether you simply want camera pieces or the cheaper old stock (fagia). If you simply have a couple of thousands to take a position, select pieces randomly rather than buying a bale of mitumba clothes.

Mitumba Retail Business Plan Kenya

Mitumba Vs New: Which Busines is Better?

The entrepreneurial journey starts the minute you opt for the sort of business you would like. This initiative, finding a business idea, may have a couple of doubtful moments. you’ll come up with a couple of ideas, toss them around in your head and leave them altogether. If you’ve got been weighing your options between starting a mitumba business and a replacement clothes store, here’s some information to save lots of you the nerve-wracking thoughts wondering what to take a position in.


Arguably, mitumba suppliers are in plenty around the country. you’ll buy directly from mitumba importers, or buy from resellers.

On the opposite hand, there are fewer suppliers of the latest clothes, and that they do business only in major towns like Nairobi and Mombasa. If you would like to extend your margin of profit while selling new clothes, you’ve got to import directly from Kampala, Turkey, Dubai, China, or another major international market.

Price of stock

Mitumba clothes are affordable in wholesale whether on per item or per bundle (bale) basis.

However, new clothes are pricey. The wholesale price often features a minimum number of pieces requirement.

Marketing avenues

For both mitumba and new clothes, you’ll use offline and online marketing platforms and be as creative as you would like .


Mitumba clothes often have a 100% per item because you’ll sell some items at double the quantity you purchased them, or pick a couple of of the simplest clothes and sell them thrice the acquisition amount. Mitumba pricing depends on the standard of an item and therefore the overall cost of purchase per bundle (bale).

There is an honest margin of profit in selling new clothes, but since the buying price is high, you’ll not double the asking price to urge a 100% profit. for instance, a second-hand handbag can cost Ksh100 in Gikomba for you to retail it at Ksh200 – Ksh1, 000 counting on your quality of the bag and your market. On the opposite hand, a replacement handbag will cost between Ksh1,000 and Ksh2,500 so your retail price could be just Ksh500 above your buying price.

Uniqueness of Mitumba Clothes

Mitumba is exclusive. A bale may need several similar pieces but they’re going to attend different customers. Kenya’s uniform is the best description of the shortage of creativity when it involves imports of the latest clothes.


Competition is present in both markets whether you sell new or second-hand clothes. The marketing strategy distinguishes one business from the opposite.

Capital Needed

Mitumba needs as low as Ksh100 to start out. On the opposite hand, you would like several thousand to start out selling new clothes.

Quality of Mitumba products

Both the mitumba and new clothes are quality products. However, mitumba’s quality depends on the number of washes before the things importation as mitumba. Therefore, unless you purchase crème bales only, expect to possess a couple of worn-out pieces within the bale.

How to Find a Mitumba Supplier in Kenya.

To set-up a successful mitumba business, you would like a competent and efficient supplier. the sort of bale or items you would like to sell should guide you.

Terms suppliers use to define bales include ladies’ chiffon tops, ladies’ fancy tops, poly (official-looking dresses) dress, and mixed (a mixture of denim, cotton, and other materials) dresses. If you ever get confused, invite a clarification before you order.

If you would like to pick a camera rather than buying a bale, find a mitumba trader who opens bales regularly, and is willing to sell the simplest pieces to you. you would possibly need to pay beforehand as assurance that you simply will show up when the vendor opens the bale for you to select the simplest items.

If the thought of paying beforehand doesn’t sound good to you, visit open-air markets like Korogocho at dawn and choose items freely from various traders. That’s why traders flock Gikomba as early as 5:30 a.m. in search of stock. you only got to know when and where the simplest bales are opened in markets around you.

When buying a bale, one of the most difficult is finding a trustworthy supplier. There are numerous cons so you would possibly pay and never get your bale. Additionally, a trustworthy supplier won’t tamper with the bale by removing the simplest pieces and repackaging the old stock.

One of the foremost popular platforms to find out about mitumba and skim reviews of mitumba suppliers in Kenya maybe a Facebook group called Mitumba Chap Chap. With over 180,000 members, this group discusses issues arising within the industry. Grace Wambere, the founding father of the group, maybe a graduate who has been in the mitumba business for over 5 years now, demystifying the parable that mitumba businesses are for college dropouts and therefore the hopeless.

How Much Capital does one get to Invest in Mitumba Business?

You can start a mitumba business with as low as KSh100, and expect a margin of profit of fifty to 100%. However, capital controls what you sell, where you get your items from, and where you sell them. for instance, with KSh100, collect ties, socks, and bras from various sellers and resell them from an open-air marketplace. With KSh100, you want to select items to sell from another trader.

However, if there’s extra money, buy a bale, and have the liberty to settle on where you sell it from whether during a shop or from an outdoor market.

The amount of capital also depends on the quantity needed for expenditures like rent, the value of stall installations, employees, a business license, a steamer to get rid of creases, a mannequin, hangers, and a motorbike if you’d wish to do deliveries yourself. once you list down all the expenses and include a minimum of three months’ rent, you reach the typical amount of capital you would like.

The Pricing Strategy for Mitumba Bales

In an open-air marketplace, you’ll open a bale of garments and sell everything at an equivalent price. In such settings, the worth of every item should cover a fraction of the value of the bale and therefore the profit expected. the worth of the remaining items goes down consequently every day. you’ll wait until all the things sell, mix the last 20 approximately pieces with a replacement bale or set the old pieces aside and sell them alongside a replacement bale. If there are space and money, get two stands. Stock one stand with new bales, and sell old stock( fagia) at a throwaway price from the opposite stand.

Another pricing strategy 

Another pricing strategy that works best for stall owners whether selling retail or wholesale is sorting the things into the camera, the center quality, and fagia. as an example, a lady’s poly dress bale bought at KSh30,000, delivered in Nakuru at KSh1,000 means the value of the purchase is KSh31,000. Hence, the 150 pieces therein bale must yield the quantity invested plus profit.

Let’s say there are 70 dresses that are almost new, 50 pieces that are in fitness, and 30 pieces that aren’t so pleasing. Divide the value of purchase with the 70 pieces and you get 442. Sell the 70 pieces at between KSh450 and KSh500 and to urge you’re a refund. Sell the remaining 80 pieces at between KSh300 and KSh200 to urge a profit of about KSh20, 000.

When using this pricing strategy in an outdoor market, state clearly that every item features a different price in order that your customers know before they rummage through the pile. Hence, the camera pieces revisit all the cash invested in buying the bale.

Additionally, use discounted pricing when targeting resellers so as to clear your camera stock fast. Encourage resellers to shop for from you at a lower cost for maybe 10 pieces or more.

The Most Profitable Mitumba Clothes

All second user clothes sell. However, more mitumba traders specialize in ladies’ clothes, shoes, and purses. Shem Spiess, one among the youthful mitumba bale suppliers says ladies tops, both chiffon, and ladies t-shirt tops, sell fast. Nevertheless, you need to find out what sells better in your region by analyzing the local market or trading center.

According to Shem, who reaches bent customers trying to find mitumba bales online through his Facebook business page, Purple Queen Stores, “The biggest challenge is handling people that want to venture in mitumba. they’re available in eager to make their millions fast hence they are not prepared to handle the risks involved in mitumba business”.

Factors Influencing Mitumba Business In Kenya

Factors that influence what sells better in your local market include the weather, the demographics also because of the economic activities. for instance, if you reside during a township with a bigger older generation, you’d obviously not expect to ascertain jumpsuits in mitumba shops within the town center.

However, if there’s a university nearby, a couple of mitumba traders stock clothes for the younger generation. Additionally, if you reside on the foothills of Mount Kenya, heavier jackets would sell quite light sweaters.

The profitability of stalls and markets near Boda Boda operators or the most stage can also be influenced by the economic activity happening there. These are small niches that require mitumba helmets, maroon and blue khaki trousers, reflector jackets, riding boots, and heavy (winter) jackets. Hence, the profitability of such mitumba businesses therein area is influenced by economic activity.

The most profitable mitumba in your area may additionally be controlled by the purchasing power of your audience . as an example, if you’re targeting girls in high school, selling bras at KSh50 and below is more profitable than buying an upscale bale to retail each bit at KSh200.

Where to Set-up your Mitumba Business

There are two sorts of mitumba businesses. you’re either a retailer or a wholesaler. A wholesaler needs a couple of millions to ship a container of mitumba wear with about 550 bales, so let’s leave that for an additional day.

As a retailer, sell exclusively online, or have a store and use various marketing strategies to draw customers to the shop. There are a couple of challenges of selling online but as I said earlier, resilience and patience are the last word traits of a mitumba seller.

Mitumba may be a good side hustle. Make deliveries at lunch hour and over the weekend. Get a trustworthy employee and run the business all week long. the sole compromise could be awakening early over the weekend in search of stock if you decide on items from other sellers in Gikomba et al. Alternatively, buy bales rather than selecting pieces randomly.

Irene Oduor started her business in June, 2016, and she or he says it currently meets all her financial needs. “I chose to sell Kidswear because after doing my research I acknowledged that they move really fast since babies outgrow their outfits in no time compared to adults. most significantly, I really like children so dressing babies is fun and that I roll in the hay effortlessly”. She is active on Facebook, continually publishing collections of baby decline her business page Timeless Kidswear.

Irene makes deliveries throughout the region. “I sell purely online since I started and that I must appreciate the very fact that I can reach an outsized client base because a client in Malindi or Busia can get to ascertain what I sell just by getting to my Facebook business page. Besides, by selling online, I reach even those around East Africa and therefore the more customers access my page, the more it boosts my sales, as long as I stock the right outfits for them. I might choose online any day so as to not limit myself then far so good”. Her page is doing well for a business that’s just over a year old, with over 4,000 Facebook page likes.

For a land-based mitumba business, sell during a make-shift stall (kibanda), during a local market.

You can sell your items from a selected outdoor market or explore a spread of markets in your vicinity. for instance, if your stall is during a council market in Nairobi, you’ll visit other markets around Nairobi on some days. Here’s an easy guide to outdoors markets in and around Nairobi ( most local council markets charge between KSh20 – Ksh50 per trader).

  • Githurai 45 – Sunday
  • Kikuyu – Sunday
  • Ruiru – Wednesday, Saturday
  • Kitengela – Sunday
  • Limuru – Wednesday, Saturday
  • Kenol – Sunday
  • Dagoretti – Wednesday, Saturday
  • Wangige – Monday, Thursday
  • Athi River – Tuesday, Saturday
  • Mokongeni in Thika – Tuesday, Friday
  • Githunguri – Monday, Thursday, Saturday
  • Kiambu – Tuesday, Friday
  • Gachie – Sunday
  • Kawangware – Tuesday, Friday
  • Korogocho – Wednesday, Saturday

Selling mitumba clothes in Gikomba and other large open-air markets is profitable due to the millions who tickle certain supplies or to shop for mitumba for private use. However, all mitumba sellers cannot slot in Gikomba so you’ve got to urge a kibanda or stall elsewhere.

To sell during a stall or kibanda, here are a couple of things to believe.

Location For Selling Mitumba Clothes In Kenya

Find a premise that’s suitable for the things you would like to sell. for instance, sell Grade 2 bales in an open-air marketplace because they’re cheaper, and on an honest day, it takes a couple of hours to recover your money. Alternatively, if capital limits you, select a couple of pieces from other sellers at about KSh10 and resell at KSh30 in an open-air marketplace. On the opposite hand, when selling during a classy mall, you would like enticing apparel like crème and first camera pieces from Grade 1.

How will you attract pedestrian traffic to your stall? Some sellers use digital marketing platforms like Facebook to form sales or inform area residents about the shop. Unless you expect to form all sales online and do deliveries, there should be sufficient pedestrian traffic around your stall or kibanda.

Can you sustain the business for a few months without spending the cash recovered from selling a bale on expenses? If not, you won’t have money to shop for the stock by the second month.

In Conclusion: 

Problems/market forces in mitumba business

Selling mitumba may be a lucrative venture. This sector supports a big population across the country. stepping into this sector is usually suffering from problems like extortion by middlemen and supplier scams. However, these problems shouldn’t stop you from earning an honest living.

Some issues, like losses and buying a bale that’s not suitable for the market, are manageable. However, there are other economic processes beyond your control like calamities and political influence on the industry. Annually, mitumba sellers in open-air markets like Toi Market and Gikomba incur losses thanks to unexplained fires. the simplest precautionary measure is insuring your stock against theft, fires, and political upheavals.

Since 2015, the East African Community (EAC) has held talks several about banning mitumba to save lots of the region’s textile industry. However, Kenya stalled these plans earlier this year, so mitumba businesses can breathe and compete with the local textile industry. For now, since the govt has not banned the importation of mitumba, found out your business and make some money. You shall cross that bridge of import ban once you come thereto.


Mitumba Retail Business Plan Kenya

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  1. Thank you,i was so confused on what to do bun now Im informed n certain too, asante sana

    1. Thanks So Much For Your Review Marione. We Wish All The Best. Thanks

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